BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Budget cuts are prompting Alabama officials to close three state crime labs and stop crime-scene processing, which some police officers say will cause delays.
The Birmingham News reports that the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences will close the drug chemistry labs in Jacksonville, Florence and Dothan to meet a 15 percent state budget cut. ADFS Director Mike Sparks said the employees at those sites will be moved to larger labs elsewhere in the state.
Sparks said he is also ceasing crime scene assistance since most of that work is done by local police officers. His department conducts death investigations, processes DNA samples and analyzes drugs and firearms. It handles roughly 60,000 cases annually.
Jacksonville Assistant Police Chief Bill Wineman said the budget cuts will be a "nightmare."
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