Sample Research Paper On Crime Scene Investigation
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Crime scene investigation is the term often used relating to the process associated with the investigation of a criminal event. It is the systematic process of documenting, collecting, preserving, and interpreting physical evidence associated with an alleged crime scene, in an effort to determine the truth relating to the event in question . There are many components of a crime scene investigation. The five basic personnel of the crime investigation process are the first responder, detective or investigator, crime scene investigator or technician, criminalist or forensic scientist, and the courts . The first responder is the patrol officer who responds to the initial complaint. The duty of the first responder is to secure the scene and not to touch anything. The detective decides whether or not additional investigation measures are necessary.
The crime scene investigator is responsible for the physical evidence in the crime scene, such as fingerprints or presumptive tests for the presence of blood at crime scenes. He also transports the evidence to the booking location. He must implement a scientific approach, which not only includes the mechanical aspects of scene security, but also certain dynamic approaches, such as scene survey, scene definition and analysis, and the reconstruction of the crime scene . The characteristics of a successful crime scene investigator are intuition, eye for detail, good communication skills, knowledge of methods for locating and preserving evidence. A crime scene investigator should have good observational skills and adept in both oral and written forms of communication, which is necessary for proper testimony and documentation .
Crime scene investigation is a must in the case of a sudden death. The first responder secures the crime scene so that the physical evidence is safe. The crime scene investigator does a screen briefing, which includes scene location, initial witness information and investigative strategy. The investigator walks through the scene to minimize the disturbance in the scene and to avoid the loss of fragile evidence. Appropriate documentation, collection and integrity of the physical evidence are necessary to maintain a chain of custody, which reduces the possibility of exception to the integrity of the physical evidence . The next step is to perform the investigation adhering to the laws. Photography is the best source for the permanent documentation of the crime scene. A well-written document of the crime scene helps to match the photograph with the actual scene.
The crime scene investigator must safeguard the evidence for future litigation and evaluation. The final record must include the statements of the witnesses and the sequences of the discovery of death. The post mortem report helps the investigator to identify the accurate cause of death. The investigator must also collect information, such as the mental and social history of the decedent to determine the circumstance of death. It is the responsibility of the investigator to interact with the decedent’s family and assist them in making necessary arrangements about the availability of information . Similar to a death scene, sex related crimes also follow a similar process of investigation; however, the process is complex to identify if there is a network of people involved in the crime.
As technology continues to improve, the comparison and identification efforts of the crime scene also tend to improve. It is important to improve the quality across forensic science and its uses within the crime scene investigation process. In addition to photography, the use of other processes helps to improve the further record the finger print, such as enhancing the fingerprints in blood with the use of chemical processes . The increased use of automated laboratory procedures and computerized analyses should improve departmental efficiency and accuracy of handling the evidence through accreditation of the laboratories and certification of its employees. Recurrent forensic awareness training for investigators will promote an integrated approach to the process of crime scene investigation in preserving the evidence. Further advancements in digital technology help to gain the minutest details of the crime scene.
Employing new technologies in the preservation of the evidence and the discovery of innovative methods in the identification of the cause of death make the investigation process easier and accurate. New developments in the crime scene technology help the investigator gain tremendous information from the crime scene. The sooner and accurate the information collected, the better chance for the effective resolution of the case. Current databases store and search data, such as DNA profiles, fingerprint identifications, and other characteristics, which are not sufficient to solve no-suspect cases . It is important to link the local databases to the national database to ease the process of investigation.
Dutelle, A. W. (2011). An Introduction to Crime Scene Investigation. Jones & Bartlett Publishers.
Pepper, & Ian. (2010). Crime Scene Investigation: Methods And Procedures. McGraw-Hill International.
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