The United States Supreme Court recently ruled that laboratory technicians will have to testify regarding lab tests for such tests to be accepted into evidence. This will create significant problems for the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office.
Nassau County Crime Lab Closed Since February
In February of 2011, the Nassau County Crime Lab was closed. This action was taken after the crime lab lost it’s certification for drug testing. Nassau County is now in the process of re-testing thousands of samples taken regarding drug cases. All of the testing is currently being undertaken by a crime laboratory located in Pennsylvania. It is estimated that this is costing Nassau County in excess of $100,000 per month.
Presenting Laboratory Evidence
The Supreme Court decision will require Nassau County to bring the crime laboratory technicians from Pennsylvania to testify with regard to the tests they conducted concerning evidence obtained by police in drug related cases. The United States Supreme Court case requires the actual lab technician who conducted the test to testify on the procedures utilized in the analysis of the drug material. The court ruling does not allow for supervisors or other employees to testify instead of the technician that conducted the tests.
Criminal defense lawyers throughout the country have taken the position that this removes the unfairness from the submission of laboratory tests by prosecutors without calling the lab technicians to testify regarding their procedures. This gives criminal defense lawyers an opportunity to cross examine the laboratory employees with regard to how they handle the evidence sample and the tests and procedures undertaken by them.
The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo represents individuals charged with crimes or who are being investigated for crimes. We are experienced in representing individuals charged with computer and internet crimes, violent crimes, white collar crimes, sex crimes, weapons possession, driving while intoxicated (DWI), shoplifting, burglary, juvenile offenses, assault and battery, domestic violence, drug offenses and all other types of misdemeanors and felonies. Feel free to contact us for a free consultation.