06.26.08

Schiff Secures Funding for Local Law Enforcement to Help Improve Safety and Investigation Efforts

Official Seal of the US House of Representatives

Thursday, June 26, 2008 Contact: Sean Oblack (202) 225-4176

Schiff Secures Funding for Local Law Enforcement to Help Improve Safety and Investigation Efforts

Washington, DC – Today, Representative Adam Schiff announced that the House Appropriations Committee approved funding for several local law enforcement initiatives to establish a local forensic DNA laboratory and institute, to purchase protective equipment for SWAT team members and to upgrade investigation equipment. The funds for Glendale, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Station in Temple City, Monterey Park, and California State University, Los Angeles were requested by Rep. Schiff and included in the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS) Appropriations bill.  The bill will now be sent to the House Floor for a vote. 

“DNA evidence is one of the most powerful tools we have to track down murderers and rapists. The funding in this bill will help speed DNA analysis by establishing a new lab in Glendale and expanding the institute at Cal State LA. It will also provide life-saving equipment to law enforcement."

The bill included $1 million for the City of Glendale for a Forensic DNA Laboratory.  The City of Glendale has a backlog of almost 1,000 cases with preserved DNA evidence. This funding would establish a DNA laboratory within the Glendale police facility which would provide a timely return of DNA analysis, crime evidence, and cold case evidence. While the DNA lab would be located in Glendale, it would also service the neighboring cities of Burbank and Pasadena and would be capable of accepting evidence from many of other regional communities as well.

The bill appropriated $1 million for Cal State, Los Angeles for its California Forensic Science Institute (CFSI).  This funding will enable CFSI to become a training and technical support center for local public crime laboratories in California. The funds will provide start-up resources for CFSI, and will be used for forensic science curriculum materials and staff training programs.

The bill provides $50,000 to the Monterey Park Fire Department for protective equipment.  This equipment will enable Monterey Park fire personnel to work with law enforcement agencies to set up staging areas in the event of an emergency.  In addition, the Fire Department provides tactical medics to be a part of the Monterey Park Police Department’s Special Weapons and Tactics and Special Response Team (SWAT/SRT). These firefighters enter dangerous areas under conditions that could inflict life-threatening damage, and the funding will also be used to purchase body-armor for this work.

Lastly, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Temple City Station will receive $35,000 for a Mobile Law Enforcement Automobile Investigative System.  Temple City Station serves a population of 200,000 and will use this funding to purchase a system to improve investigation capabilities.  The unit will be installed on a sheriff's car and will help recognize and identify suspicious vehicles and will be used for investigative purposes.