Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine officially opened BCI&I’s new Athens office last Thursday. The BCI&I Athens office will serve southeastern Ohio counties with evidence intake, polygraphs and other law enforcement services.
“As Attorney General, I made a commitment to make BCI the premier crime lab in the country for the protection of all Ohioans,” DeWine said. “The BCI Athens office, with its full-time presence in southeast Ohio, brings BCI closer to that goal.
The BCI&I Athens office will make it easier for area law enforcement to submit evidence to the BCI&I. In 2010, law enforcement agencies in southeastern Ohio counties submitted 1,180 cases to the BCI&I London laboratory for examination. In Athens County alone, the Sheriff’s Office submitted 99 cases and the Athens Police Department submitted 51 cases.
“I’m not so sure it will make it any easier on us,” Scioto County Sheriff Marty V. Donini said. “It’s about the same distance, as I recall.”
DeWine said the BCI&I Athens office will also offer full-time polygraph services for law enforcement. The office also contains witness and suspect interview facilities and office space will also be used by BCI&I special agents.
The Athens office joins regional offices in Bowling Green, Richfield and Youngstown; and the part-time evidence intake facility in Cambridge.
“In law enforcement, time is of the essence in getting criminals off the street,” DeWine said. “Having full-time evidence intake facilities accessible in all areas of Ohio means that law enforcement can utilize evidence to identify suspects more quickly.”
FRANK LEWIS may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 232, or firstname.lastname@example.org.