Thursday, August 13, 2009


So, I'm driving home from work yesterday and hear the report on NPR regarding the closing of the crime lab in Newburgh. This is the lab where all the regional police departments send their forensic research.

The lab is expected to shut down in mid October. This will definitely delay the turnaround for evidence in many cases, including DWI, Rape, Murder and anything requiring crime scene examination. The materials will now have to be transported to Albany.

Thats right, a police officer in each of our departments from Putnam & Rockland County to Dutchess and Ulster, will now have to trek on up to the already overburdened facilities in Albany to have work done. How will this help law enforcement at a time when crime is expected to rise throughout the region?

I heard DA Carnright on the radio saying "If anything, we should be opening another lab!" He went on: "We're going to be running into delays that could well result in our inability to prosecute some criminals."

UC Undersheriff Frank Felutico said he was shocked to have to hear this from a reporter since the news went out from a committee in Albany without notice that it was even being considered. Having started serving in the regional drug task force based in Newburgh, Frank said he was very familiar with the lab and felt it's need outweighs the expected savings that the State plans to acrue.

Assemblyman Cahill even got a shot in about how this was short sighted and needs to be reconsidered in committee to get the logistics of such a move re-evaluated. The Governor is looking for any means to cut costs, but cutting services to the very forces that expedite criminal cases in the courts throughout the lower Hudson Valley, is not the way to go.

According to one local paper, the State notified the employees at the Newburgh lab will be absorbed in to the workforce at the Albany lab. Considering the lack of lab jobs in the region, many of those employees are destined to make that commute everyday. Needless to say, this lab closure was short sighted at best.


Anonymous said...

Even the freeman didn't go into this detail. What are the chances the state will relocate and continue serving this area? Will such an outcry from the local precincts have any affect on their action? What about other labs in the area?

Anonymous said...

Looks like the entire county is reading the old childrens story: "the sky is falling". I guess if enough people hear the cry- then the sky will fall- The fall out from DC and Albany is not done. Shambles everywhere- yet the proverbial sun will come out tomorrow- No question, these are bad times, more than my three score and two years have ever witnessed. Obama is now considering raising fees to the large banks- don't they realize that these banks will pass on the addtional fees to John Q- oh well. If there was ever a time for the right and the left to move towards the center, today is the day.

As for the discontinuance of the Regional Crime Lab- how, and why. Don't they watch. Miami CSI, NY CSI- how will the local police solve crimes? Seriously, this is the one area that cutbacks will become a problem for the county.
hey I could go on and continue but why? the deal is probably a done deal.
It's really to bad that our own local Public Access Station is not on the air- But soooooooooooon
take care,