Utah Department of Public Safety

Forensic Services - Evidence

The evidence section is the first place your evidence will enter when it is brought to the lab. It is their job to inspect the evidence to ensure it is properly sealed, a proper chain of custody has been established, and that the evidence is probative to the case. If they feel that the evidence you bring in does not meet the criteria stated above, it may be rejected. Evidence may be submitted in two was. These are in person or through the mail.

In Person Submissions

The submitting agency can bring the evidence straight to the lab. There are 3 labs throughout Utah. All of these labs can accept evidence for any section in the lab. Before you bring your evidence to the lab we ask that you pre-enter case information into the Utah Criminal Justice Information System (UCJIS) Each agency has designated people who have access to this network. To gain access, you can speak with BCI and they will get you set up.

When entering information into UCJIS, make sure you have the following:

  • Correct case number
  • suspect information
  • Correct item numbers
  • Correct description of evidence (include all layers of packaging and accurate counts if there are multiple items in one bag)

Pre-entering case information helps us take in your evidence faster so you can be on your way quicker. If you have already submitted items of evidence for a case and need to submit more, you will not be able to pre-enter the information into UCJIS. You will need to bring that straight to the lab.

Submissions By Mail

When sending evidence to the lab, you MUST use a trackable carrier. This includes Fed-Ex and UPS. Here are some guidlines to follow when sending evidence to the lab:

  • Evidence must be protected against alteration, contamination, and destruction.
  • Please make sure that the evidence you are mailing is packaged securely.
  • Items should be packaged separately to ensure cross contamination does not occur.
  • A signed chain of custody is required for acceptance into the lab. Keep the chain and other paperwork outside of the sealed evidence. We will not open sealed evidence to retrieve these items. If we find that they have been sealed in the evidence, we will send it back for correction
  • Items containing blood or bodily fluids should never be packaged in plastic
  • Also remember to leave room for the item to be placed back into the original packaging after analysis, do not package the item too tightly.
  • Proper seals must be on ALL items
  • Check each item to make sure that a signature and date has been placed ½ on and ½ off of the tape to show that the evidence has not been tampered with. This MUST be done.
  • Remember to identify biohazards, sharps, and weapons cleared.
  • Only submit items to be tested. If you have additional items all packaged together please remove the items not needing to be submitted to the laboratory.
  • Submit all items necessary to complete the case
  • Pre-enter case information into UCJIS
  • Any problems with packaging or the chain of custody will result in us sending the evidence back with out performing an anlysis.

If you have any questions as to what to submit or how to submit it, feel free to call the lab. We will be happy to answer any questions.

[Last Update - Friday, 08-Mar-2013 16:25:37 MST]