Budget Cuts Force Dothan's Crime Lab to Close

Cuts continue to be made in the state budget.
This time, multiple crime labs are being forced to close.

Three satellite crime labs will be closing their doors in Alabama, one of them being right here in Dothan.

This crime lab has been in operation for over 2 decades.

Lab technicians processed narcotics evidence from surrounding law enforcement, including the Dothan Police Department and the Houston County Sheriff's Office.

Now these agencies will be forced to transport their evidence to Montgomery.

Law enforcement officials say it will be a burden and will take longer for evidence to be processed.

However, they say the quality of work will remain the same.

“It’s going to give us a gas issue, vehicle wear and tear, and man power down one or even two depending on we start moving the evidence to and from,” says Captain Antonio Gonzalez with the Houston County Sheriff’s Office.

“It's just going to be a change. The evidence, the way it's handled the way it's processed through the forensic science. It's done impeccably. So nothing with that will change. It's still the same forensic science lab that will be handling it, just a different location,” says Dothan Police Department Corporal Rachel David.

An official closing date has not been set, but officials expect the change to happen sometime in June.

Corporal David said the Dothan lab techs are some of the best employees in the Alabama Department of Forensic Science, and she expects them to be offered a transfer.

Jacksonville State University's Complex and the lab in Florence will also be closing

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