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State Police Forensic Labs Adopt Rigorous National Standards

In a continued pursuit of excellence, the seven laboratories of the Michigan State Police Forensic Science Division (MSP-FSD) were recently issued certificates by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC) for implementing nationally recognized forensic standards. The OSAC organization aims to develop technically sound standards and guidelines to be used in the forensic science community that help to provide confidence that forensic analyses across various disciplines are properly supported, reliable and reproducible.

"Our pre-existing adherence to some new OSAC standards and the voluntary adoption of others demonstrates the continued strong commitment of our scientists and technicians to conducting the highest quality, most objective scientific analysis," stated Col. Joe Gasper, director of the MSP. "We take great pride in being among the first 10 percent of public forensic science laboratories to adopt these nationally peer-reviewed standards."

Of an initial 36 registered applicable standards reviewed, the MSP-FSD fully incorporates or has adopted 29 of the standards. An additional seven standards are partially incorporated with the intention of full adoption. 

MSP's seven laboratories join just 36 other labs in the United States that have received official recognition as an OSAC standard implementer. MSP-FSD personnel have also provided national leadership in the OSAC procedure development process via the membership of several MSP scientists on various committees since the inception of the OSAC.

"By choosing to be an early implementer, the Michigan State Police Forensic Science Division has demonstrated its leadership and commitment to quality. We look forward to continued collaborations with the MSP and appreciate the participation from their nine OSAC members and affiliates in drafting these nationally recognized standards," said John Paul Jones, OSAC Program Manager with the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The MSP operates seven regional forensic laboratories accredited by ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB) to ISO/IEC 17025:2017 that provide forensic services to law enforcement agencies and fire investigation units statewide. MSP scientists have expertise in 11 forensic specialties and analyze a wide range of physical evidence in criminal investigations.