Evidence Submission Information
The Wisconsin State Crime Laboratory is part of the Division of Law Enforcement Services within the Wisconsin Department of Justice. To support the state, there are three separate service areas: Madison, Milwaukee, and Wausau. Both the Milwaukee and Madison laboratories are full service laboratories providing DNA Analysis while the Wausau laboratory offers limited services at this time. In total, there are ten disciplines practiced at varying levels throughout the state. The service of questioned documents and handwriting analysis as well as tire track impression are no longer provided by the WSCL.
Services at the WSCL are available without charge to all authorized submitters. By extension, this includes a member of an authorized agency acting within the scope of their employment. If you are uncertain if you are an authorized submitter please contact the WSCL.
The WSCL reserves the right to and may decline any matter that does not involve a felony charge. Whether or not it ultimately accepts a case, the WSCL is available for consultation. If in doubt, criminal justice providers are urged to contact the WSCL for advice related to problems confronting their investigation. The WSCL is open Monday through Friday, 7:45 am to 4:30 pm, except federal holidays. After-hour services are available via crime scene response teams dispatched from the Madison, Milwaukee, and Wausau Crime Laboratories.
Evidence Caseload and Case type
In total, there were 12,564 cases submitted to the WSCL in 2015. The case intake was split relatively even across the three Bureau locations with the two full service laboratories having slightly more submissions. The data in the graph below is based upon the offense code assigned to each case in the Laboratory Information Management System (BEAST). The types of cases submitted to each laboratory vary; for instance Controlled Substance cases account for over 70% of the cases received at the Wausau Laboratory. Case types included in the Other category include Weapon Seizures, DWI, Other Assaults, and Miscellaneous.
Physical Evidence Handbook and Guidelines
The WSCL has published the 8th Edition of the Physical Evidence Handbook on the public side of WILEnet. Additionally, the WSCL has put together a more condensed Evidence Submission Guidelines as well as references for DNA Analysis and Controlled Substance.
As of September 1, 2013 the WSCL will no longer provide the service of questioned documents and handwriting analysis. For more information see this announcement.
As of January 1, 2016 the WSCL will no longer provide the service of tire track impression. For more information please see this announcement.
Evidence Submission Information for Criminal Defense
Upon court order, the services of the WSCL are available at no cost to a defendant in a felony action. Results are confidential to the defense. Often, the items to be examined are in the custody of a police agency. While the agency may be directed to act as courier to deliver and retrieve items after analysis, results will not be discussed with them.
The WSCL does not provide services for civil cases.