DNA Section Supervisor on Board at HPD
September 28, 2005 -- Houston
Police Crime Lab Director Irma Rios is pleased to announce the
selection of a DNA Technical Manager to head the lab’s DNA
Vanessa Nelson, most recently a DNA analyst in
the Harris County Medical Examiner’s office, assumed her
duties over the operations of the DNA section in the HPD Crime
Lab on September 5. “I am extremely excited to accept this
opportunity and welcome the challenge to help build the Houston
Police Department’s Crime Lab into one that will eventually
serve as a model for other labs to follow,” said Ms. Nelson.
Prior to her duties at the medical examiner’s
office, Ms. Nelson worked as a DNA Section supervisor at the Texas
Department of Public Safety Crime Lab in 2003 and 2004. She was
promoted to section supervisor after working in the DPS lab as
a criminalist the three previous years. Ms. Nelson earned a doctorate
of philosophy in medical sciences from Texas A&M University
in 2000 after graduating cum laude with a bachelor of science
degree in biomedical science in 1996 at A&M.
Ms. Rios said Ms. Nelson was chosen over a number
of candidates in a nationwide search and after an extensive review
of her background. “Vanessa brings experience, professionalism,
a work ethic, and communication skills that I believe are going
to bring credibility and public trust back to one of the most
important sections in our lab,” Ms. Rios added. “This
hiring is a major step in the goal to achieve accreditation in
the DNA section by the end of this year or early 2006,”
said Ms. Rios.
On May 10 of this year, the HPD Crime Lab was
granted national accreditation in five of six areas of the lab,
with the DNA section in the process of restoring DNA testing to
meet standards for accreditation from the American Society of
Crime Lab Directors-Laboratory Accreditation Board (ASCLD-LAB).
For additional information, please
contact the HPD Public Affairs Division at 713-308-3200.