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Moreau, Dale M. Crime Scene Search As a Process. Forensic Science Training Unit, FBI Academy. Quantico, Virginia.

Abstract: This article provides information related to the management of a crime scene and the procedures for collecting evidence. The author suggests a set of guidelines for the administration of a crime scene, although there is no definitive set of rules that will apply to all crime scenes.

A successful crime scene search begins before a crime is ever committed. Training, planning, and organization are key components to a search that will yield valuable information.

The major goals of a crime scene investigation are to collect physical evidence, reconstruct the crime, identify a suspect, and link the suspect to the crime scene. Physical evidence provides impartial facts that alone may not prove much. However, when combined with witness statements and other factors, physical evidence becomes vital, especially in a courtroom. When collecting, preserving, and documenting evidence, the investigator must keep in mind that this evidence will end up in court. Law enforcement officials must work together to procure accurate and objective evidence from a crime scene.

This article provides a basic procedure for the management of a successful crime scene. The steps include: (1) approach scene; (2) secure an protect scene; (3) preliminary survey; (4) narrative description; (5) photograph scene; (6) sketch scene; (7) evaluate latent fingerprint evidence; (8) evaluate physical evidence; (9) detailed search; (10) collect, record, mark, and preserve evidence; (11) final survey to insure scene has been documented thoroughly; (12) release scene.

For more information, contact:
FBI Academy
Quantico, VA 22135

 
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