Why does it take the OSBI so long to test a SAK?
The amount of time needed to process a SAK can vary widely depending on many factors. Testing a SAK is a multi-step process that includes screening for biological material, extracting DNA from stains or swabs, analyzing the DNA, producing a written report, and reviewing the entire process for errors. Each step is conducted systematically in an effort to avoid mistakes. Currently, turnaround times at the OSBI forensic laboratory are higher than we would like. Many factors have contributed to this, but know that the OSBI has created the “Specialized Forensic Biology Unit” whose sole responsibility is to do testing on sexual assault cases. The OSBI has purchased new instrumentation that will decrease the turnaround time. This new technology is going through the process of validation. We plan to begin using it in casework starting in July 2020. Additionally, five new biologists came on board in early 2020 to assist with sexual assault cases. While time is needed to ensure they are fully trained, OSBI is working diligently to decrease the amount of time it takes to complete analysis on sexual assault cases.