Corpus Christi (KIII News) — The Department of Public Safety has its very own forensic crime lab located in Corpus Christi. It serves much of South Texas and is located near Moody High School.
Usually the building is off limits to the public, but on Wednesday some students from Robstown Early College High School got a rare look behind the scenes. The students were given a tour that provided a unique look inside the crime lab to see what DPS investigators do on a daily basis.
The DPS crime lab opened its doors to the students to check out a different aspect of fighting crime. Instead of a gun and a badge, the staff at the DPS crime lab use science.
"It's very, very cool. Not a lot of people get to see it," student Caleb Kwiatkowski said.
Kwiatkowski and his peers got to see firsthand how evidence is processed and how it can help solve a variety of cases.
"I've always wanted to do law enforcement my entire life and something that, when they asked if I wanted to go to the forensic crime lab, see how we do it, I was stoked to do it," Kwiatkowski said.
The students are currently taking a forensic science course in school and are learning that the work that goes on in a crime lab is not quite the same thing they see on TV crime shows.
"I found out a lot of stuff they do is super cool," student Oscar Vela said.
"They get to see these different areas, how they do it, what goes on. Gives you an idea that crimes can't be solved in 40 minutes like they see on TV. That it takes time. There is a time process there. They take their time to get it right," Sgt. Nathan Brandley said.
From processing DNA to drugs, the crime lab not only handles all of the volumes from DPS but also assists different law enforcement agencies through 18 counties in South Texas.
The tour was an eye-opening experience for the students serving as sort of a recruiting tool for the department.
"Especially the ones who want to go into forensic science, getting degrees or looking for colleges that they can get a degree in chemistry or biology. You have to have either one of those to work in a crime lab," Brandley said.
DPS holds an open house for the public two times during the year.
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