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Forensic Chemistry-Trace Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q:  How do I package fire debris?
Q.  Can the OSBI determine if alcohol was used to start a fire?
Q.  Can the OSBI determine if the gasoline found in the fire debris came from the gas station down the street?
Q:  How long after a shooting can gunshot residue be collected from an individual?
Q:  How should I collect gunshot residue?
Q:  Can gunshot residue be collected from clothing/inanimate objects?
Q:  How should known paint samples be collected?
Q:  Does the OSBI do explosive analysis?
Q.  How do I obtain gunshot residue collection kits and arson cans?

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Q:  How do I package fire debris?
A: Fire debris should be packaged in clean, previously unused lined paint cans and should be filled no more than three-fourths full.  If the fire debris is too large to fit in a paint can, the fire debris can be submitted in an arson bag or a biohazard bag tied and placed in another biohazard bag.

Q.  Can the OSBI determine if alcohol was used to start a fire?
A.  No.

Q. Can the OSBI determine if the gasoline found in the fire debris came from the gas station down the street?
A.  No.  Fire debris analysis is able to distinguish gasoline from other ignitable liquids, but no information can be provided on where the gasoline came from.

Q:  How long after a shooting can gunshot residue be collected from an individual?
A:  It is recommended that gunshot residue on a living individual be collected between 0 and 4 hours after a shooting incident; however, samples taken up to 10 hours can be analyzed.  

Q:  How should I collect gunshot residue?
A:  Gunshot residue should be collected with an OSBI provided gunshot residue kit.  Samples from cotton swabs or gauze are unable to be analyzed by the OSBI.  

Q:  Can gunshot residue be collected from clothing/inanimate objects?
A:  Yes.

Q:  How should known paint samples be collected?
A:  This is case dependent.  Please,
contact the Trace Evidence Unit.

Q.  Does the OSBI do explosive analysis?
A.  No, the OSBI does not analyze explosives.

Q: How do I obtain gunshot residue collection kits and arson cans?

A:  OSBI Gunshot Residue Collection (GSR) Kits and arson cans are available to Law Enforcement agencies in the State of Oklahoma. 

     Click here for contact information on obtaining GSR kits and arson cans.