Mihaela Sfiroudis On Working At The St. Charles Crime Lab

As a DNA analyst Sfiroudis and her team works on many cases assigned to them at any given time.


via @SCCMOPD Twitter

In March 2021, Mihaela Sfiroudis was featured as a EnpowerHER panelist on the online panel for the St Charles County Missouri Police Department.

Elizabeth Hamby, Co-Editor-In-Chief of The Ledger

The fluorescent lights shine on the St. Charles Crime Lab workers as they serve the county by studying evidence delivered to them, all-around machines are whirring as they complete the duties of the scientists. 

On April 21, through the program Career Explorations Alliance, one Wentzville School District student signed up to job shadow at the St. Charles County Crime Lab. 

Of the many women that work at the lab, Mihaela Sfiroudis serves as a DNA analyst. 

“As a DNA analyst, I process evidence, DNA analysis which is finding sources of DNA and body fluids, process for touch DNA, then process that to get a DNA profile. And on top check machines to make sure that they are running the way that they are supposed to,” Sfiroudis said. 

Along with her team, she works within the DNA unit, she processes many cases working them from start to finish. Sfiroudis has many cases currently backlogged and she says that she works them at a much slower pace than the drug chemists that can whip them out fast. 

“There are around 30 cases pending on one list which are done within the next month or two,” Sfiroudis said. 

The St Charles Crime Lab only services this specific county, and she explained that there is a different influx of cases compared to say the city. 

Another unseen responsibility of her job is to potentially testify in court speaking on behalf of the evidence she processed. 

We do testify in court if you write on a report. In order to be able to testify, you had to be the scientist that processed the DNA and wrote the report,” Sfiroudis explained. “We then send it to the detective, that sends it to DA’s office and decides if the victim even wants to press charges.”  

She has her first date to testify coming up in the near future and she expressed her nerves due to the event.

Sfiroudis has been working at the Crime Lab for two and half years, previously working at a research facility at her alma mater, Washington University of St. Louis. She participated in unicellular algae research on genes of diseases, and noted her love for the impact she has on the community she serves at the Crime Lab. 

The facility deals with three main forensic disciplines, firearms (in which they are fired into a water drum and analyzed shots), drug chemistry (studying and identifying identities of collected drugs), and of course the DNA analysis unit.