Dale Laux talks about the connections that can be made at ISHI and discusses the products that SERATEC offers.
Travis: Is this your first ISHI or how many have you been to?
Dale: Well, it’s not my first. I’ve been to probably 10 or 12.
Travis: Ok, with…
Dale: No, I started years ago, I worked at a crime laboratory in Ohio. Ohio BCI for 30 years, and my very first meeting was in (I believe) 1995.
Dale: Occurred right after the OJ verdict.
Travis: Ok, can you tell me about that? That’s interesting.
Dale: Well I sure can. I have a story. I was very excited. I was new. This was my first meeting at Promega and back at that time it was in Scottsdale, Arizona, at these resorts, which was great. And I had gone out to Scottsdale and they had a nice buffet (Mexican of course), and I gathered my food on a dish, and tacos, and burritos, and everything; a new person looking for a spot to sit. And I asked, “Is this seat taken?” “No.” “Ok, thank you.” And I sat down, and somebody said, “Well, let’s go around and introduce ourselves.” “Dale Laux, Ohio BCI.” You know, just a schmuck. “Hello, I’m Chris Darden. I’m a prosecutor in California.” “Hello, I’m Marsha Clark, prosecutor.” And I’m thinking to myself “Oh.My.Gosh.”
Travis: You were sitting with the dream team.
Dale: I was sitting with the dream team. And Robin Cotton, who had analyzed the DNA from Cellmark. And I know I had heard and seen the trial, and I know these people, and I’m thinking “Oh my gosh, don’t drop food on yourself, Dale. Don’t belch.” It was the most uncomfortable meal I’ve ever had, but I made contacts, and the nice thing was these were real people. They were very nice to me. Accepted me, and that’s the way it’s been throughout the years that I’ve attended these. You meet people, and you’ve read about these people in the news, and they’re human beings. And I’ve just enjoyed every year coming here. This is the group of scientists that are making a difference in solving crime, advancements every year. You come to these to recognize all the new techniques and trends in science and it’s just wonderful.
Travis: That’s great.
Dale: We produce membranes that detect the presence of body fluids and they’re used in preliminary examinations that detect semen, blood, saliva, before we go on and do DNA on something that’s not even human.
Travis: Right, right, right. So would you do this at a crime scene, or is this for after collection?
Dale: We are developing tests that can be used at a crime scene; swabbing and collecting and running them, but primarily they’re used in the laboratory by scientists.
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