The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) provides federal funding through multiple forensic science programs to combat violent crime, resolve cases, lower recidivism, increase public safety, and enhance justice. In collaboration with BJA, the Forensics Training and Technical Assistance (Forensics TTA) Program, led by RTI International, offers a team of subject matter experts who provide expertise and assistance to grantees in support of BJA’s overall mission to strengthen America’s criminal justice system.



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DNA Capacity Enhancement for Backlog Reduction (CEBR) Program

The CEBR Program provides federal funding for publicly funded accredited forensic DNA laboratories to process, and increase capacity to process, eligible samples for entry into the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI’s) Combined DNA Index System (CODIS).

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Missing and Unidentified Human Remains (MUHR) Program

The MUHR Program provides federal funding to eligible entities so they can improve reporting, transportation, forensic testing, and identification of missing persons and unidentified human remains in the United States, including migrants.

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Paul Coverdell Forensic Science Improvement Grants (Coverdell) Program

The Coverdell Program provides federal funding for states and local government units to improve the quality and timeliness of forensic science and medical examiner/coroner (ME/C) services.

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Postconviction Testing of DNA Evidence (Postconviction) Program

The Postconviction Program provides federal funding for states and local government units to defray the costs associated with postconviction DNA testing in cases of violent felony offenses (as defined by state law) in which actual innocence might be demonstrated.

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Prosecuting Cold Cases Using DNA (COLD) Program

The COLD Program provides federal funding for agencies to resolve violent cold case crimes by providing them with resources to investigate and prosecute cases where a suspect’s DNA profile has been generated.

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Strengthening the Medical Examiner-Coroner (ME/C) System Program

The ME/C Program provides federal funding to help address medicolegal death investigation (MDI) workforce needs to increase the number of practicing board-certified forensic pathologists and to support ME/C offices’ needs to implement and follow quality standards and performance criteria in an effort to provide a consistent and equitable application of MDI services.


CEBR Funding Contributes to Approximately Half of All CODIS Hits to Date

Recent performance data from grantees show that CEBR funding is responsible for more than 500 CODIS hits per week. Based on the reported metrics, the CEBR Program has contributed to...

Texas State University’s Operation Identification uses MUHR funding to assist rural jurisdictions with unidentified human remains cases

Operation Identification (OpID) within the Forensic Anthropology Center at Texas State University started ten years ago with the aim of locating, exhuming, and working towards identification for long-term unidentified human...

The City of Charlotte’s Coverdell funds help support evidence documentation that led to a U.S. Postal Worker being indicted for stealing business checks worth over $1.9 million

In 2023, the DCS5 Fingerprint Enhancement System, which was funded by the City of Charlotte’s Coverdell award, was used to document processed evidence in a case involving financial crimes and...

Attorney General Nessel Announces Vacated Wrongful Convictions in Calhoun County

The convictions of Louis Wright, 65, have been vacated pursuant to a collaborative review by the Michigan Department of Attorney General’s Conviction Integrity Unit, the Calhoun County Prosecutor’s Office, the...

Man accused in two 1979 Monterey County homicides cannot be charged due to mental illness

Jurn Norris, 69, formerly from Marina, has been identified as the perpetrator in the killings of Helga DeShon and Uicha Malgieri, both young military spouses slain in their apartments in...

Broward County, Florida Fellow hired as a staff Forensic Pathologist following successful completion of Fellowship Program

The fellow started promptly on July 1, 2018, and successfully completed all phases of the program. She completed over 200 autopsies, attended training from NAME and the American Academy of...
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