DENVER (CBS4)– There is new technology coming to Colorado that promises to help investigators process crime scene DNA faster. The Denver coroner’s office received a $386,000 grant to buy a rapid DNA processor.
That processor can speed up the process of identifying victims, especially in mass casualty situations. The machine can process DNA in less than 2 hours.
Right now, that process takes months.
“Having the ability to process DNA on site, in a matter of hours, greatly improves our ability to find and notify decedent’s families. This identification allows loved ones to have a burial, to obtain death certificates and to receive justice, in some cases,” says Dr. James Caruso, OME’s Chief Medical Examiner, in a statement. “The pain for families can be unbearable when they don’t know where there loved one is and aren’t able to give a meaningful and proper goodbye.”
The machine is also mobile and can travel to different locations in the nine-county region. It can also help identify people who remain unknown.
The grant is part of the Urban Area Security Initiative. The grant not only covers the purchase of a DNA processor but also the equipment necessary to run the machine, including hardware, software, hundreds of tests, access to databases, and training of staff.