Police Investigation

1304 Words Apr 22nd, 2012 6 Pages
Mr. Michael Munn, M.A.
Mary Lara
02 March 2012
Criminal Investigation Principles
Crime today has become complex as human nature. The sophistification of how crimes are committed today and the challenging of certain laws have added substantial burden to those who have chosen careers within the Criminal Justice System to investigate and prosecute such criminals. Many concerns in conducting the various types of investigations has always been the legality of the “how’s”, “who’s” and “when’s”. The collecting of physical and DNA evidence, Interviewing of witnesses and the various types of surveillances used all fall into a closely watched category within the investigation process. Not only is it imperative that all types of investigations
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Once collected and back in the laboratory the appropriate experts will examine each piece of evidence and conduct analysis such as fingerprint identification, ballistic examination, DNA testing etc deemed necessary to identify the individual/individuals responsible for a crime while at the same time maintaining a record of all test done. Any mishaps or protocols not followed can be damaging in a successful prosecution. The defense counsel can ultimately challenge the evidence, have it suppressed and not admissible in court. Another area in investigation that brings up some issues is the interviewing of witnesses. Key issues that are normally looked for in interviews are inconsistencies, credibility and if the witness voluntarily gave information or was coerced in some way. A rule of thumb for doing interviews is to be as complete and detailed as possible. Several good steps to follow for a solid interview are: 1) Interviews should be done as close to when the event occurred. As time passes, chronological and inferential confusion increases. 2) Prepare for the interview. Make a list of topics and questions you want to cover; be prepared to take a different path of questioning if necessary. 3) Build rapport and be an effective listener. Make the witness as comfortable as possible and listen with active involvement. 4) Gather all information from the witness regarding the event and if needed a written statement as well. 5) Before

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