Houston Is Finally Getting Out of the Crime-Lab Business

The chronically hapless Houston police crime lab will be no more, thanks to a City Council vote today.

Council approved a measure taking the first steps to close the lab and outsource its work to an independent nonprofit organization.

Mayor Annise Parker has long pushed for the move. Critics have railed against the HPD lab for years, with studies and media reports showing incompetence and allegations of bias. The city even has an official FAQ page on the crime lab controversy.

Parker has told KUHF she's earmarked $5 million to run the Houston Forensic Science Center.

Harris County is building a new forensics center, and some councilmembers wondered about duplication of effort. Parker said some consolidation of city-county operations in the future hasn't been ruled out.

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Richard Connelly
Contact: Richard Connelly