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Community Foundation Of The Verdugos Unveils Campaign To Fund Glendale-Burbank DNA Justice Project
Date:11/7/2014

BURBANK, Calif., Nov. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In conjunction with the Glendale and Burbank Police Departments, The Community Foundation of the Verdugos has announced the "GLENDALE-BURBANK DNA JUSTICE PROJECT," a $250,000 initiative to keep the Verdugo Regional Crime Lab operational after its extremely successful initial phase. In its first six months of existence, the Lab has processed more than 400 DNA samples, providing desperately needed evidence support for local law enforcement.

"Because our number one priority is the wellbeing of our community, it's only proper that the Community Foundation of the Verdugos take a leadership position in securing the future of our community's DNA lab," said Ernest P. Burger, Esq., president of the Foundation board. "This funding will help the police identify criminals and keep our community safe."

Since January of 2014, the Verdugo Regional Crime Lab has helped police investigators work smarter and faster – both in building cases against criminals and in exonerating the innocent. Additional funding provided through the Community Foundation will allow the lab to secure even more advanced crime-fighting technology that will improve law enforcement's ability to process DNA samples.

"As larger regional DNA analysis labs have become overwhelmed, the cities of Burbank and Glendale have been determined to find a solution for processing DNA evidence more quickly," said Edna Karinski, CEO of the Community Foundation of the Verdugos. "Making safer communities and safer neighborhoods is something that the CFV can wholeheartedly support."

"DNA is one of the most powerful tools law enforcement has to identify violent offenders and take them off the street," said Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), who secured the original funding to build the regional DNA Lab serving Glendale, Burbank, Pasadena and the surrounding communities. "I want to thank the Community Foundation of the Verdugos for its campaign to increase the capacity of the forensic DNA Lab and allow local law enforcement to solve crimes faster and keep our families safer. The Foundation deserves our gratitude and support for the vital role it is playing with the Lab and so many other important neighborhood efforts."

The monies raised through this initiative will help prevent the delay of rape kit processing as well as the backlog of other DNA evidence. It will also secure much-needed software that will help analysts identify multiple sources of DNA within the same sample.

"The Foundation is making an initial commitment of $50,000, and has already collected several important pledges from local organizations," Burger said. "We are looking to the communities to help us raise the additional $200,000 needed so that rape kits and other DNA evidence can be processed in time, and perpetrators brought to justice."

For more information about the Community Foundation of the Verdugos and the Glendale-Burbank DNA Justice Project, please visit cfverdugos.org or call (818) 241-8040 or email info@cfverdugos.org.


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SOURCE Community Foundation of the Verdugos
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