Thanks, The DNA Project team.
Archive for August, 2009
The following items on the FSL’s “wish list” have to date been donated to the FSL by the DNA Project:
|Western Cape Lab|
|Gold 96-Well GENEAMP PCR System 9700|
|Canon 350 Digital camera|
|Crimezone 3d Software|
In addition to the above items, the Pretoria FSL has 8 Imaging Work stations which form part of the 2 Evidence Recovery Laboratories (ERL) – Each of these ERL’s needs a camera, macro lens, macro lighting flash, tripod and head, and (most importantly, given the requirement to use these images in court testimony) a Data Verification Kit (to verify the authenticity of the image – proof that no tampering had taken place with the image).
In response to this need, the DNA Project has provided the Pretoria FSL with:
- High-resolution digital cameras (compatible with DVK; see below).
- Data verification kits (DVK), to verify that images taken with the digital camera have not been altered, tampered with or manipulated in any way.
- Macro lens’, for recording fine detail of evidence.
- Flash units, to properly illuminate items being photographed in macro mode.
- Photo printers, to allow for photographic records to be printed for presentation in court cases.
- Tripods, suitable of facilitating macro photography in a studio environment.
The infinity curve, serving as a suitable backdrop to allow for the capturing of images not disturbed by distracting backgrounds (this is part of the supplies included in the current building contract). As important as the DNA profile is to securing a conviction, it is just as imperative to present irrefutable supporting evidence, e.g. with regards to the chain of custody, when having to testify in a court case. This is where this photographic work station comes in – to indicate the original condition, at the time of evidence recovery and examination of an object from which a DNA profile was retrieved, or to even capture the condition of a package containing evidence submitted for forensic examination, e.g. to indicate that the package was sealed properly at the time it was received, proving that the chain of custody was intact (no tampering with the evidence could have taken place), and therefore any DNA profiles obtained from the evidence may be accepted as valid.
”A Celebration of Women in Science, Engineering and Technology
6th August 2009, MTN Science Centre, Canal Walk – 13h30
National Science Week is an initiative of the Department of Science and Technology and utilises science-based activities to create awareness about the important role that science plays in people’s lives whilst having fun at the same time.
The Association of South African Women in Science and Engineering (SA WISE) is a dynamic association for all those who support the idea of strengthening the role of women in science and engineering in South Africa – www.sawise.org.za
by way of raising funds in order to equip the FSL with crucial and much needed DNA profiling equipment which will help to reduce the current backlog of unanalysed DNA samples and biological evidence. The more equipment that is given to the FSL’s, the more chance we will have of improving the FSL capacities to analyse more DNA samples which translates into a larger DNA Database.
to educate the public and key sectors of the community to safeguard a crime scene in order to maintain and preserve the integrity of DNA evidence.
to increase awareness of the importance of a COMPREHENSIVE National DNA Database so that key people in authority are informed of the benefits of DNA profiling technology for purging and solving crime in SA.
to effect changes in existing legislation which currently prevents DNA samples from being collected from convicted offenders – the amendment of current legislation will ensure that the DNA profiles of convicted offenders are added to the national DNA database, thereby making full use of the power of DNA technology to solve crimes and act as a deterrent.
to look at ways to further improve the capabilities and capacities of the FSL such as analyst training and continuing education, the purchase of additional upgraded laboratory equipment and supplies, scientific validation and implementation of new forensic technologies, facility modifications, and contractor-provided services for assistance in implementing new capabilities.