NMDPS Forensic Laboratories Bureau
Law Enforcement Public FAQs
What time can I submit evidence to the lab?
- The NMDPS Forensic Laboratories Bureau’s evidence sections remain open Monday through Friday between the hours of 8am to 12pm, are closed for lunch, and reopen from 1pm to 5pm. Officers may submit evidence to the laboratories during the listed hours of operation.
How many cases can I submit at one time?
- The forensic laboratories serve the entire state of New Mexico and maintain a consistent intake of evidence. Therefore, our laboratories request agencies limit quantities to 20 cases per submission. The laboratories also requests agencies schedule appointments for high volume submissions with our evidence sections prior to submissions, to allow adequate time for preparation and intake processing.
How should I package the evidence that I need to submit?
- It is imperative to maintain the integrity of all evidence submitted to the laboratory. However, a firearm should NEVER be submitted to the laboratory loaded. In the event a problem exists with a firearm regarding the functionality or safety, please call the Firearms Section for assistance or guidance. Furthermore, clothing and items that have been saturated with blood should be thoroughly dried prior to packaging. Paper packaging is ideal for the majority of submissions to the laboratory, to include Latent Print evidence and DNA evidence, and the use of plastic packaging should be limited to specific circumstances and appropriate drug evidence. Ensure all items are properly sealed with evidence tape, and each seal should have, at a minimum, the initials of the person who sealed the evidence and the date.
What guidelines exist for submitting evidence to the Controlled Substance Analysis Unit?
- The forensic laboratories do not accept syringes with attached needles as evidence. Attached needles pose a significant hazard to the analysts. However, you may place the contents of the syringe into a vial and submit the vial as evidence. Additionally, prior to submitting suspected drug evidence, such as marijuana, the evidence should be thoroughly dried and properly packaged, and in situations where large quantities exist, sub-samples should be taken and submitted for testing. For situational clarification and questions, please contact our Controlled Substance Analysis Units.
Do I need an acceptance code for any additional requests, other than DNA?
- No, you do not need an acceptance code for evidence submitted for analysis with any other disciplines, unless that evidence is also being examined for DNA. If the evidence requires DNA testing, please contact a DNA analyst for a DNA acceptance code or use the Request a DNA Acceptance Code link on the DNA Section page.
How long does it take to get the results back on a case?
- Each case is unique and therefore the time it takes to complete a case varies. The laboratories request a minimum of 30 business days per discipline to complete the analysis. You may submit an inquiry with the specific discipline working on the case, and obtain a projected date of completion.