SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – To help crime labs address the critical issues facing the evolving field of forensic science and improve forensic laboratory turn-around times in criminal investigations, state Rep. Lakesia Collins (D-Chicago), sponsored legislation to create the Illinois Forensic Science Commission under the Illinois State Police.
“Forensic sciences are used daily in the justice system to help solve crimes including robberies, murders and other criminal activity,” said Collins. “With forensic sciences being such an integral part of the work that our State Police do to provide justice for crime victims, we must do everything we can to ensure these services are being delivered timely and as professionally as they possibly can.”
Collin’s legislation, Senate Bill 920, recently passed the House Police and Fire Committee unanimously and is awaiting a vote on the House floor. The legislation creates the Illinois Forensic Science Commission composed of ten members ranging from forensic scientists, State Police officers, academics specializing in forensic sciences and a retired judge with criminal trial experience. The goal of the commission is to provide guidance on how to ensure the efficient and sound practice of forensic science. The commission will also provide training to practicing forensic scientists throughout the state.
“The goal of this commission is to ensure that no backlogs or delay in services happen,” Collins said. “I’m confident that this bill will help to strengthen Illinois’ criminal justice system by improving access to forensic evidence.”