Arkansas State Crime Lab
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About Us

The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory was created in 1977 by Act 517. The laboratory was placed in the Department of Public Safety by Act 864 of 1979. This action was reversed by Act 45 of 1981, when the laboratory once again became a separate agency. In April 1981, the laboratory began moving into its current location at #3 Natural Resources Drive in Little Rock. At that time, the agency shared the building with the Arkansas State Police, occupying approximately 26,000 square feet on the third floor and the basement. In April 1997, State Police moved to their new facility and the Crime Laboratory began remodeling the building at #3 Natural Resources Drive allowing itself to occupy 80,000 square feet.

The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory is led by an Executive Director who is appointed by the Governor to serve at the will of the Governor. Act 383 of 1991 created a new Crime Laboratory Board, which is made up of eight members (where the original board had only seven members. This act also gave the power to hire and terminate the Chief Medical Examiner to the Board. The Crime Laboratory Board has policy-making powers as to the operation of the Crime Laboratory. It is required to meet at least once each quarter. The Laboratory has no police powers. It is funded through general revenue, special revenue, and federal grants. However, in the past, Federal Bureau of Justice Assistance funds have been available and utilized for the purchase of equipment that can be attributed to fight the "war on drugs". There is no charge to any law enforcement agency for any analysis of evidence submitted or for testimony in criminal court. The agency can charge specific fees for testimony of its analyst in civil courts. The Crime Laboratory only accepts evidence from those agencies having law enforcement responsibilities. However, during the 79th Legislative Session, the Public Defender Commission was given the authority to utilize laboratory services.

 

Mission

The Mission of the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory is to provide the highest quality scientific services to the criminal justice community and the State of Arkansas. This is accomplished through a team of skilled and dedicated employees utilized scientific equipment and appropriate validated methodologies. The laboratory strives to provide these services in a timeframe amendable to our customers.

 

Quality Policy Statement

The goal of the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory (ASCL) is to provide the highest quality forensic services to our customers. The ASCL has defined its customer base as the Judicial System. This includes law enforcement agencies, prosecutors and defense council, regulatory and other public service government agencies. The ASCL is committed to meet the needs and expectations of all of our customers utilizing a philosophy of quality and service.

The ASCL standard of quality requires that all forensic conclusions, both written and verbal, are scientifically valid, accurate, consistent, and reliable. This standard of quality serves as the guiding principle for all technical and strategic decisions involving work undertaken by the ASCL.

This principle is shared by all employees of the ASCL.

The objectives involved in meeting this quality goal are to:

  • Maintain excellence in the quality of forensic science services provided to the Judicial System.
  • Ensure the use of validated procedures that are reliable, reproducible and which serve their intended purpose with respect to precision, accuracy, sensitivity, and specificity
  • Provide scientific analysis reports that are clear, accurate and objective
  • Provide relevant, professional and impartial testimony in judicial proceedings
  • Participate in a proficiency-testing program that monitors the capabilities of the analysts/examiners and the reliability of our analytical results
  • Participate in annual audits of the quality system
  • Provide a system to ensure the integrity and security of evidence from its receipt to its return
  • Ensure quality in every aspect of our work
  • Ensure that the public has a quality laboratory in the State of Arkansas
  • Comply with ASCLD/LAB International Accreditation Standards and to continually improve the effectiveness of the ASCL Quality Management System.
  • Identify opportunities for improvement related to quality in all areas of operation, take corrective action to remediate non-conforming work, and make every effort to prevent recurrence.

The entire staff of the ASCL will adhere to the spirit and intent of the quality assurance program, as well as to the directives of this Quality Manual and its supporting documentation, including the Personnel Handbook, the Health and Safety Manual and the Discipline Quality and Training Manuals. All members of the staff will strive to improve customer satisfaction for each and every one of the services provided by this laboratory.

I personally affirm this commitment and support the established comprehensive quality assurance system, which will allow our agency to meet all of the requirements of the ASCLD/LAB International Accreditation Standards. We are committed to a strategy of continuous improvement, constantly seeking to learn the expectations of our customers and striving to meet those needs and expectations.

Kermit B. Channell, II

 

Core Values

The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory has defined a set of core values that influence the way we conduct our daily work:

  • Quality
  • Teamwork
  • Safety
  • Clear communication
  • Accountability
  • Professional development

 

Strategic Plan

The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory has developed a Strategic Plan for the 2018–2019 fiscal year. The document can be viewed here.

ASCL Logo (thick border, color) 120x96

Contact Information

Arkansas State Crime Laboratory
3 Natural Resources Drive
Little Rock, AR 72205
(501) 227-5747 | (501) 227-5936
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