09.08.09

eahy Invites Vermont Forensics Lab Director To Testify Wednesday Before Senate Judiciary Committee

WASHINGTON (Tuesday, Sept. 8) – The director of the Vermont Forensic Laboratory, Dr. Eric Buel, will testify before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.  Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, who chairs the Senate panel, invited Buel to testify about the state laboratory’s successes and challenges in forensic analysis and addressing backlogs in processing forensic evidence.

The hearing will be the second chaired by Leahy this year to examine a report released in March by the National Academy of Sciences.  The report was commissioned by the Senate to review the quality and rigor of many forensic sciences, and its conclusions identified several needs within the forensic science community.

Buel will testify about the support the Vermont Forensic Laboratory has received through federal grants, and about the growing need to make improvements to forensic science.  Forensic science plays a critical role in the investigation and prosecution of criminals.

Leahy also is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and has secured funds to help the Vermont Forensic Laboratory invest in instruments, supplies and technology that have allowed the state’s premier forensics lab to develop a successful evidence processing program.  Leahy also worked to secure federal funds to move the Laboratory to an updated facility.

Also testifying Wednesday will be Peter Neufeld, Co-Director, The Innocence Project; Harold Hurtt, Chief of Police, Houston Police Department; Paul Giannelli, Professor, Case Western Reserve University; Barry Matson, Deputy Director, Alabama District Attorneys Association and Chief Prosecutor, Alabama Computer Forensics Laboratories; and Matthew Redle, County and Prosecuting Attorney, Sheridan, Wyoming.

The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. and will be webcast live online.  Buel’s testimony will be available online Wednesday morning.

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Hearing before the
Senate Committee on the Judiciary

on

"Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States"

Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Dirksen Senate Office Building Room 226
10:00 a.m.

Dr. Eric Buel
Laboratory Director
Vermont Forensic Laboratory
State of Vermont Department of Public Safety
Waterbury, VT

Peter Neufeld
Co-Director
The Innocence Project
New York, NY

Harold Hurtt
Chief of Police
Houston Police Department
Houston, TX

Paul Giannelli
Professor
Case Western Reserve University
Cleveland, OH

Barry Matson
Deputy Director
Alabama District Attorneys Association
Chief Prosecutor
Alabama Computer Forensics Laboratories
Montgomery, AL

Matthew F. Redle
County and Prosecuting Attorney
Sheridan County
Sheridan, WY

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Press Contact

David Carle: 202-224-3693