The Increasing Number Of Drugs And Crime

773 words - 4 pages

Drugs are a included in many of the criminal justice cases in the US so the need to have well trained analysts is important as well as having correct equipment and tests to analysis the drugs properly. There are Scientific Working Groups for many of the different disciplines of forensic science, including drugs. The NAS Report has recently come out taking about what changes should be made in the forensic science arena. There is an every multiplying amount of drugs in the world because new ones are constantly being created so there is a long future for this section of forensic science.
The ways of analyzing drugs and identifying them are microcrystalline tests, gas chromatography, mass spectrometry, and spectrophotometry. Microcrystalline tests are more specific than the color tests and is uses the polarizing microscope. Gas chromatography is when the sample is separated into its different components based on size and chemical structure. Mass spectrometry fragments the molecules in the sample and that pattern of fragmentation helps with the identification of the substance when compared to a known standard. Spectrophotometry identifies substances by measuring how it absorbs the different wavelengths of light including; UV, visual, and infrared. There are all used to decipher the chemicals compositions of the sample to determine what kind of drug is contained in the substance, including how pure the substance is as well.
The Scientific Working Group for drugs is SWGDRUG. They set out guidelines for the professionals that practice in the drug analysis. Some of the guideline includes training and continuous training, sample schemes and procedure, and reporting to name a few. The training guideline set out what you have to so to become a certified drug analyst. It also includes the requirement of constnious training, requirements that need to be met every year to maintain certification. Another part of the guidelines is ways the drugs should be tested. The sampling scheme is basically how get a random sample as well as if a “sample reduction” is necessary. There is a graphic laid out in the guidelines for sample reduction. The basic questions are whether it’s a bulk sample or multi-unit, if they are visually the same, and if they are separated or not, etc. The procedure talks about non-random samples and random sample, the guidelines always recommend...

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