By: AP
By: AP

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- The Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences has received a grant from Gov. Robert Bentley that will allow the agency to buy a piece of equipment that will speed up the identification of drug evidence.

Bentley said the grant of $145,870 will allow the department to buy the Direct Analysis in Real Time instrument. Bentley said the equipment has the capacity of analyzing 1,000 evidence items per month and will help reduce the agency's backlog of substances that
need to be tested.

The governor said the tests are important in determining if a suspect is found guilty or set free. Department officials said the equipment can be used to detect "designer drugs," such as synthetic marijuana. A recent executive order by Bentley makes possession and sale of synthetic marijuana illegal.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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