HPD crime lab fails to gain accreditation

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The Chronicle‘s Steve McVicker reports that the Houston Police Department has failed in its latest attempt to gain accreditation for the crime lab:

A national panel rejected the Houston Police Department’s effort to have its troubled crime laboratory accredited by the end of February.

Mayor White and Chief Hurtt

In a meeting Saturday in New Orleans, the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors told HPD lab director Irma Rios that auditors had found problems with the evidence chain-of-custody record-keeping.


On Feb. 16, Police Chief Harold Hurtt told state lawmakers investigating the crime lab that he hoped to have it accredited by the end of February.

On Tuesday, state Reps. Kevin Bailey, D-Houston, and Robert Talton, R-Pasadena, filed a bill that would establish regional DNA crime labs that would be overseen by the Texas Department of Public Safety.


“It’s two years later and they still can’t get accredited,” the state lawmaker said. “You don’t see any real evidence that they’re making a whole lot of progress.”

In all fairness, Mayor White and Chief Hurtt have been very busy with other priorities, such as Tasers, red-light cameras, SAFEclear, and the like.

We’re sure, though, that the sky is the limit now that Chief Hurtt is in uniform.

Laurence Simon has further thoughts on this news.

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Kevin Whited
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Kevin Whited is co-founder and publisher of blogHOUSTON. Follow him on twitter: @PubliusTX