St. Paul Police Chief Thomas Smith said he became aware of serious concerns about his department's crime lab in the past week, but court records show that Smith's assistant chief and a senior commander knew about the problems months ago.
St. Paul Police Chief Thomas Smith vowed to make changes at his department's troubled crime lab Thursday, after lab employees testified in court that the lab has no standard procedures for how to test evidence for the presence of illegal drugs.
Senior Commander Colleen Luna of the St. Paul Police Department will lead the reorganization of the crime lab.
Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom said Wednesday that he did not learn of the serious allegations against the St. Paul Police Department crime lab until last week, but court documents show that at least one Dakota County prosecutor knew about problems at the lab for almost four months.
The news comes after two crime lab workers and the director of the lab said this week that the lab does not follow any written procedures for drug testing and does not document most of the steps they take when testing evidence for illegal drugs.
Defense attorney Christine Funk, one of the attorneys challenging the St. Paul Police Department crime lab's drug testing procedures, saying Wednesday that the lab should review all of its drug cases.
The St. Paul Police Department's crime lab came under harsh scrutiny by defense attorneys in the second day of a Dakota County hearing that could affect thousands of drug cases.
Attorneys representing a Rochester man charged with drug possession asked a judge to throw out evidence tested by the St. Paul Police Department's crime lab, arguing the lab's results are not reliable. The dispute over the procedures at the lab comes at a time of increased scrutiny of science in the courtroom.
A new study found the chemical Bisphenol A can disrupt the mating behavior of fish.
While Amy Senser's defense lawyer plans to appeal, several Twin Cities-based attorneys and legal experts said they considered it a fair sentence.
Organizers with the group Occupy Homes say their efforts to help homeowners fight foreclosure are showing signs of success.
State fire officials are urging people to use caution when handling fireworks on the Fourth of July holiday, and not let children handle sparklers or other fireworks.
Minnesota Department of Health epidemiologist David Neitzel says a St. Louis County man become ill in late May after traveling to south-central Minnesota.
Minnesota leads the country in the number of international adoptions per capita, but tighter regulations have caused those numbers to drop sharply in recent years.
Minnesota's lawmakers, political groups and unions reacted quickly to the Supreme Court decision.