Press Releases

Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher Tours Houston Forensic Science Center Where Federal Funding for Project is Expected to Help Address Criminal Evidence Backlog at Houston Police Department

Houston, TX—Today, Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher (TX-07) toured the Houston Forensic Science Center (HFSC) to see how the $963,000 in federal funding she secured for HFSC will help implement the Forensic Evidence Data System Improvement Project.  HFSC President and CEO Dr. Peter Stout led the tour for the Congresswoman, along with Houston Police Department Assistant Chief Keith Seafous, other police department leaders, and representatives from Mayor John Whitmire’s office.

HFSC is an independent local government corporation that provides forensic services to the Houston Police Department.  Funding for the project will help facilitate the design and development of information systems to improve the collection, tracking, management, and movement of forensic evidence through the criminal justice system in Houston and Harris County

“For years, forensic crime labs across the country—including the Houston Forensic Science Center—have struggled to meet the volume of requests for evidence analysis,” said Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher.  “I am glad to help ensure that the Houston Forensic Science Center will have the resources it needs, including nearly $1 million in federal funding that I requested, advocated for, and obtained through congressional appropriations to help address the backlog of criminal evidence at the Houston Police Department.  I was glad to partner with the Houston Forensic Science Center and the Houston Police Department to support this important work, and I look forward to continuing to work together to help make our community safer.”

Currently, thousands of cases are backlogged because of inefficiencies related to evidence handling.  The Forensic Evidence Data System Improvement Project will enhance the handling and quality of forensic evidence, improving the efficiency and efficacy of the criminal justice system for Harris County residents.

Last year, Congresswoman Fletcher requested funding specifically for the Forensic Evidence Data System Improvement Project for HFSC through the community funding project process in Congress.  The process allows members of Congress to request funding for specific projects in their districts.  She secured the funding through the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2024, H.Res. 1102, a bipartisan government funding bill that funds essential programs and projects—including the Forensic Evidence Data System Improvement Project—for Fiscal Year 2024.