October 1, 2011 began an exciting new era for the department; an additional position for a full time Property and Evidence Technician was authorized. The team is staffed full time by a civilian employee certified as a Forensic Technician through the Texas Forensic Sciences Academy, Texas Association of Property and Evidence Inventory Technicians, and the Texas Department of Public Safety.
The Crime Scene Unit collects and processes forensic evidence from all major crime scenes and assists in many minor cases as well. The “chain of custody” for property and evidence; the integrity of which is crucial, begins with the police officer in the field or a Property and Evidence Technician. When evidence is collected it is entered into the central reporting system and is placed into preliminary evidence storage. The Custodian of Evidence will place the evidence in a specific location in the main evidence room for long term storage. Items are either in long term storage pending trial, sent to a lab for analysis, destroyed/converted to agency use upon court order, or returned to the owner after adjudication of the case.
This unit is responsible for:
• Processing and documenting crime scenes and evidence
• Performing basic forensic services
• Disposition of evidence and property in accordance with industry accepted guidelines
• Assisting law enforcement with the prosecution of cases