Ohio crime lab seeks help to handle increased drug-testing

(AP Photo/Amy Sancetta, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The state crime lab that tests drugs for Ohio law enforcement agencies wants to get help from other labs to deal with increasing demand for testing amid the opioid epidemic.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the attorney general will ask the state Controlling Board this month for an extra $440,000 to have some testing done at crime labs near Cincinnati and Cleveland instead of the Bureau of Criminal Investigation. The money might come from a criminal forfeiture fund and general revenues.

BCI anticipates doing over 27,000 drug tests this year, nearly twice as many as in 2010.

BCI Superintendent Tom Stickrath says drug tests have become more complex and time-consuming as technicians sometimes deal with more hazardous, potent substances, such as the powerful painkiller fentanyl and potent animal tranquilizer carfentanil.

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