Crime Scene Investigation is an integral part associated to a crime scene. A thorough crime scene processing can lead to sequential collection of evidences that constitute a crucial part in legal processing of the case. The CSI division of our laboratory handles all the matter related to a scene of crime. Securing of crime scene, crime scene photography (overview, mid-range and close-up), and proper search of crime scene, systematic documentation of the crime scene along with suitable collection, packaging and preservation of all the evidences encountered at a specific crime scene.
The complete trial and legal proceedings depend on the crime scene investigation, as this is the only technique that helps in finding the evidences associated with the crime; by use of which through re-construction technique we can crack the possible number of events that may have occurred and thus could aid in establishing the link of the crime with the victim and the culprit.
In crime scene investigation process, no specific standard is adopted because the delicacy and fragility of a crime scene differ along with the type of crime scene it is associated with. For example, an indoor crime scene is considered much more secure that an outdoor crime scene. This is because its accessibility can be prohibited when compared to an outdoor scene of crime. Likewise, in a hit and run case, safety of the crime scene is the primary concern because of the interference of the travellers and on-lookers around. Thus, the protocol for the crime scene investigation differs with the scenario associated with the crime.
Crime Scene Documentation:
After crime scene has been evaluated by a preliminary scene survey, the crime scene’s condition must be documented. Documentation is the most important step in the processing of the crime scene. The purpose of documentation is to permanently record the condition of the crime scene and its physical evidence. It is the most time-consuming activity at the scene and requires the investigator to remain organized and systematic throughout the process.
The four main tasks of documentation are note-taking, videography, photography, and sketching. All four are necessary and none is an adequate substitute for another.
1. Taking notes at the crime scene: Effective notes as part of an investigation provide a written record of all of the crime scene activities. The notes are taken as the activities are completed to prevent possible memory loss if notes are made at a later time. Accurate crime scene note taking is crucial at the initial crime scene investigation and also essential for subsequent investigations. A general guideline to the note taking is to consider who, what, when, where, why, and how.
2. Videotaping the crime scene: Videotaping the crime scene has become a routine documentation process. Its acceptance is widespread, due to the three-dimensional portrayal of the scene and increased availability of affordable equipment with user-friendly features like zoom lens and compact size.
3. Photographing the crime scene: The purpose of still photography documentation is to provide a true and accurate pictorial record of the crime scene and physical evidence present. Still photography records the initial condition of the scene. It provides investigators and others with a record that can be analysed or examined to the scene investigation, and serves as a permanent record for legal concerns. Photography of a crime scene or after the preliminary scene survey. The number of photograph that should be taken at a crime scene cannot be predetermined or limited.
4. Sketching the crime scene: The final task in documentation of a crime scene is sketching. All the previous tasks for documentation record the crime scene without regard to the size or measurement of the scene and its physical evidence. Sketching the crime scene is the assignment of units of measurement or correct perspective to the overall scene and the relevant physical evidence identified within the scene. Three techniques can be used to obtain measurements for a crime scene sketching are triangulation, baseline (fixed line) and polar co-ordinates. All three are based on identifying two starting, fixed points and all subsequent measurements of the crime scene are in relation to those points. Good fixed points are building corners, in-ground survey markers, large trees or utility poles.
After the complete documentation, the evidences are packed properly depending upon their type. More fragile the evidence found, more cautiously its packaging is done.
Crime Scene Kit is the primary requisite of a crime scene. It normally comprises of the barricading tape, gloves, camera-lenses, measuring tape, evidence packaging bags, glass vials for the collection of biological fluids and such other liquids. We have a well-equipped laboratory that helps and enhances a better search, documentation and processing of crime scene. Along with the safety of crime scene, the investigator should always ensure his own safety, as certain crime scenes associated with bombing and explosives are considered active because there are chances of being certain unexploded matter still being alive at a crime scene. A crime scene kit comprises of all the essentials associated with the safety, security and preservation of the scene of crime.