Houston

Forensic Science Center’s Crime Lab to Move to New Facility in 2019

The plan entails constructing a crime laboratory specifically built with forensics in mind

The Houston Forensic Science Center’s crime lab will be moved to a building located at 500 Jefferson.

The Houston Forensic Science Center (HFSC) will move its crime laboratory out of the Houston Police headquarters and head to a new facility by the end of 2019, after the Houston City Council approved the change during its Wednesday meeting.

The crime lab will be moved to a building located at 500 Jefferson and the plan entails the construction of a crime laboratory specifically built with forensics in mind, according to the Forensic Science Center. The agency provides forensic services to the City of Houston and other local agencies and operates in seven forensic disciplines.

The change of facility fits HFSC’s current annual $2.6 million facility costs and will also mean moving a staff of 200-plus.

Three floors will be office space and one floor will be a newly built laboratory space. The lease for the new facility also includes about 3,000 square feet in the basement for a firing range and crime scene evidence processing.

Under the plan, HFSC will begin moving staff out of a leased Fannin location in March 2019. A phased move out of HPD headquarters in 1200 Travis will be completed by the end of December 2019.

In 2009, the National Academy of Sciences recommended that crime labs should be independent from law enforcement and the prosecutorial branches of government.

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