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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms
Explosives Investigation Guide

[ATF 3320.1 (1-85) REPLACES ATF P 3320.2 WHICH IS OBSOLETE]

TEAM LEADER

1. Select and assemble personnel/equipment and coordinate with other jurisdictions.

2. Conduct scene overview.

3. Determine and establish scene integrity, security, and safety.

4. Establish command post and media control.

5. Conduct scene walk-through with Explosives Technician and Forensic Chemist.

6. Coordinate all personnel and search patterns.

7. Assign Immediate Area Search and Investigative Units.

8. Assign General Area Search and Investigative Units.

9. Manage, evaluate, and finalize search and investigative actions.

10. Conduct final scene evaluation conferences.

PHOTOGRAPHER

1. Select and assemble equipment.

2. Photograph immediate and general area including victims, crowd, and vehicles.

3. Photograph team operations.

4. Photograph blast seat and damage showing measurements.

5. Photograph evidence as found.

6. Photograph immediate and general area from aerial perspective.

7. Take scene reconstruction photographic series.

8. Photograph blueprints, maps, and previous photos of the scene, if necessary.

9. Photograph known or potential suspects.

10. Identify additional photographic needs with all scene investigators.

EVIDENCE TECHNICIAN

1. Select, assemble and distribute collection equipment to search team members.

2. Prepare evidence control log and set up evidence collection point.

3. Coordinate and control evidence collection techniques and procedures.

4. Record the receipt of all properly marked and packages evidence from search teams on the evidence control log.

5. Categorize collected evidence.

6. Maintain custody and control of collected evidence at the scene.

7. Coordinate with Team Leader and other investigators

8. Verify collected evidence with evidence control log before departing the scene.

9. Document the chain of custody and provide temporary storage.

10. Prepare laboratory analysis requests and transmit evidence to the laboratory.

SCHEMATIC ARTIST

1. Select and assemble equipment.

2. Diagram immediate blast area.

3. Diagram general area.

4. Identify evidence found by indicating the assigned evidence numbers on the evidence control sketch showing location found.

5. Show necessary measurements of heights, lengths, and widths.

6. Make artist's conception of scene prior to blast with the help of witnesses showing where furniture was arranged or how the structure was before the explosion.

7. Prepare a legend on the diagrams.

8. Inventory collected evidence with the Evidence Technician and ensure that all evidence is noted on the control sketch.

9. Properly mark and identify the evidence control sketch and other diagrams for proper court presentation.

10. Coordinate with the Team Leader and other investigators.

IMMEDIATE AREA INVESTIGATIVE UNIT

1. Select and assemble investigative equipment.

2. Interview local officers, firemen and all possible witnesses at scene.

3. Determine the owner of the property, the victim of the explosion, and if any persons were injured in the blast.

4. Obtain names of any persons that are normally on the premises, such as employees, watchmen, or janitors.

5. Provide the names and location of all persons or groups who should be interviewed to the General Area Investigative Unit. This list will include the injured persons who were taken to a hospital or rescue workers who have departed from the scene.

6. Record descriptions and time of sounds, color of smoke, and any odors noticed by witnesses.

7. Identify all persons at the explosion scene and coordinate with the Photographer to film the crowd and vehicles in immediate and general area.

8. Question the witnesses and record facts pertaining to the general activity at the scene prior to the explosion.

9. Question the witnesses and record facts pertaining to anything unusual about the activity or any facts concerning unidentified packages, items, persons, or vehicles.

10. Reconstruct the immediate area activity and coordinate with the Team Leader and other investigators.

IMMEDIATE AREA SEARCH UNIT

1. Select and assemble equipment.

2. Stay alert for structural hazards, secondary devices and entrapment devices, before and after entering blast area.

3. Locate seat of explosion or point of fire origin.

4. Coordinate with Schematic Artist and Photographer before disturbing the crater or immediate blast area.

5. Measure and record the size, depth, and shape of the crater or damage.

6. Collect samples from the blast seat and retain necessary control samples.

7. Search and sift the seat of the explosion for device components.

8. Divide the immediate area into a search pattern and make a methodical search. Search from the seat of the explosion to an expanded area that overlaps with the general area search unit.

9. Individually record and package evidence found and follow routine procedure with the Photographer, Schematic Artist, and the Evidence Technician.

10. Reconstruct the immediate area scene and coordinate with the Team Leader and other investigators.

GENERAL AREA SEARCH UNIT

1. Select and assemble equipment and coordinate search pattern.

2. Stay alert for structural hazards, secondary devices and entrapment devices.

3. Check all surrounding buildings, vehicles and objects for damage by missiles from the explosion. Mark these locations for the Photographer and the Schematic Artist.

4. Search area of ingress and egress for associative evidence, such as footprints, tire tracks, torn clothing, blood, hair, fingerprints or other evidence that may relate to a suspect(s).

5. Search area for evidence from the explosion.

6. Search rooftops and trees or other high places that may have caught debris from the explosion. Document blast effect and glass breakage in surrounding area.

7. Determine the extent of the outer perimeter of thrown missiles and evidence. Indicate this finding to the Schematic Artist, Photographer and the Explosives Technician.

8. Adjust the outer perimeter of the search pattern as necessary.

9. Individually record and package the evidence found. Coordinate this with the Evidence Technician, Schematic Artist and Photographer.

10. Reconstruct the general area scene and coordinate with the Team Leader and other investigators.

GENERAL AREA INVESTIGATIVE UNIT

1. Select and assemble investigative equipment.

2. Review maps and evaluate ingress and egress and select a methodical pattern for canvassing the area.

3. Determine possibility of deliverymen being in the area and make a list of their names and addresses for follow-up interviews.

4. Canvass neighborhood for witnesses.

5. Canvass business premises that may be related to ingress and egress, such as all-night service stations, cafes, taverns, toll bridge, etc.

6. Prepare a suspect list with necessary facts relating to the investigation.

7. Record descriptions of suspects, suspect vehicles, and suspect premises for future use.

8. Check sources of device components/masterials recovered at the crime scene.

9. Follow Team Leader assignments as developed from the scene and make over-all evaluation from conferences.

10. Maintain communication with the Team Leader and coordinate with other investigators.

FORENSIC CHEMIST

1. Select and assemble equipment.

2. Conduct preliminary walk-through of scene with Explosives Technician and Team Leader.

3. Assist Team Leader in evaluating the situation and discuss the method of approach.

4. Assist General Area Search Unit where appropriate.

5. Assist Immediate Area Search Unit.

6. Coordinate with State and/or local laboratory personnel as appropriate.

7. Act as technical advisor for all laboratory-oriented questions arising at the scene.

8. Conduct field tests where appropriate.

9. Assist the Evidence Technician and Team Leader in the evaluation of collected evidence.

10. Assist the Evidence Technician with proper packaging for submission to the laboratory.

EXPLOSIVES TECHNICIAN

1. Select and assemble equipment.

2. Accompany Team Leader on walk-through in order to provide a technical evaluation and assessment of fire/explosion scene.

3. Establish scene parameters.

4. Identify seat of explosion or point of fire origin.

5. Assist the General and Immediate Area Search Units.

6. Technically evaluate investigative information and recovered materials.

7. Determine whether incident was incendiary or accidental.

8. Reconstruct the sequence of occurrence and physical evidence.

9. Provide technical briefings.

10. Prepare statement regarding technical determination.

[GPO 888-082]

Reproduced with permission.

 
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