Bureau of Forensic Services
The Bureau of Forensic Services (BFS) is the scientific arm of the Attorney General's Office whose mission is to assist the criminal justice system. Forensic scientists collect, analyze, and compare physical evidence from crime scenes or persons. They also provide criminalistics, blood alcohol, and related forensic science information services to state and local law enforcement agencies, district attorneys, and the courts. Please feel free to view the Bureau of Forensic Services Brochure, pdf. BFS also offers specialized forensic science training to personnel who are practitioners in the field of forensic science through the California Criminalistics Institute (CCI).
The Attorney General's Office champions the use of proven technology to fight crime that includes analyzing DNA evidence to produce crime-solving matches - improving from an average of one "cold hit" a year to one a day.
DNA Forensic Technology Solving Crimes
The Attorney General worked to eliminate the inherited huge backlog of DNA samples and pushed for improvements in a system that solved an average of one case a year. Today, the California Department of Justice operates the largest working DNA data bank in the country, processing more than 200,000 DNA samples from convicted felons and matching them to old, unsolved cases that now averages one case a day.
California's cold hit program has allowed local law enforcement agencies to clear their DNA evidence backlog of over 13,000 unsolved cases and propelled the number of "hits" from one a year to an average of one a day. A "hit" occurs when DNA evidence from an unsolved crime sample matches a DNA profile from evidence in another case or an offender's DNA profile in the CAL-DNA Convicted Felons database.
Right now, DNA samples are collected from any person convicted of any felony and those arrested or charged with a homicide or sex offense. Starting January 1, 2009, Prop 69 requires that the Department of Justice begin taking samples for any adult arrested or charged with any felony offense. Expanding the DNA Database is an essential crime-fighting tool.