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News Release| CFSI Program; Cal State L.A.

July 7, 2009

Target, outsource, train: Keys to DNA backlog issue

Cal State L.A. awarded $1 million for Smart Backlog Reduction Program

Los Angeles, CA – Cal State L.A. recently received $1 million from a federal appropriation, championed by Congressman Adam Schiff (CA-29), to collaborate on a strategic, long-term solution to the DNA backlog issue plaguing Los Angeles law enforcement. 

Teaming up with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) and the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), Cal State L.A. will facilitate an innovative Smart Backlog Reduction Program.

Addressing the issue, Congressman Schiff has said, “It is a tragedy of enormous proportions that we could be taking rapists off the street…and we’re not, even though the evidence is sitting there in a lab unanalyzed.”

The Smart Backlog Reduction Program seeks to optimize the process of reducing the DNA backlog. This infusion of federal funding will go towards the program’s three key components: Target, Outsource, and Train.

Target:  Funds for CSULA graduate students to provide the LAPD and LASD with administrative support, tracking down detectives and courts to target cases that will lead to viable prosecutions.

Outsource:  Up to 250 cases filtered through the targeting process will be outsourced to private vendors, which potentially will yield higher rates of prosecution with fewer man hours.

Train:  Advanced forensic DNA training will allow CSULA faculty to share their state-of-the-art research with working professionals. These courses will augment current training programs for professional criminalists.

The California Forensic Science Institute (CFSI), a presidentially-chartered institute at Cal State L.A., will deliver in-service training courses for current criminal justice system professionals. The CFSI is organized under the auspices of the University’s College of Health and Human Services.

Beatrice Yorker, dean of the College of Health and Human Services, said: “I applaud Congressman Schiff for making the DNA backlog a priority that will enhance the prosecution of violent offenders.”

For more information about the CFSI, please visit

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