Final Essay: Crime Investigation

Assignment 2: Final Essay

As a crime scene investigator, you respond to a homicide scene at a convenience store/gas station at 3 a.m. Upon arrival, the first officer at the scene informs you that there was an additional employee present during the incident as well as a mother and her 15-year-old son who witnessed the crime. You also find a deceased victim with an apparent gunshot wound in the chest.

You are solely responsible for the latent print work and related tasks. For example, you are not to interview anyone. You are not the case detective.

Note the following:

The scene has already been secured prior to your arrival.

All crime scene integrity precautions and procedures are already in place.

Your crime scene photographer has taken all necessary on-scene photographs for you.

All sketches and measurements have already been taken.

Other visible items:

Paper "Quick Pick" Lottery Ticket on counter with a blood-like impression on it

A blue steel .38 caliber revolver with reddish-brown spots and two hair-like fibers on it on the floor by the ice cream cooler

A ripped open cardboard carton on the floor in front of the counter

A crude map and directions to the store drawn/written in pencil on a piece of notebook paper on the floor

A typical cardboard six pack container of cold beer (bottles) on the floor near the beer cooler

One spent bullet embedded in the wall behind the counter

Spilled cigar box of $20 bills on the floor next to the deceased

Fresh-looking cigarette butt only half smoked outside the store in a parking space near the entry to the store

Your Assignment

1) Address the following for each of the eight listed items:

Explain what fixed, non-moveable items you would process for latent impressions. What process(es) will you use at the scene?
Which of the eight item(s), if any, would not be processed for latent impressions? Why?
Where are these items going to be processed?
Explain the processing protocols that you would for each item.
2) What steps would you take to determine if any of the people present at the scene may have been involved in the homicide or are merely witnesses?

3) How would you package the evidence that pertains to the fingerprint analysis?

4) Assume down the line that someone has been charged with the offense. An expert witness is called at trial. Discuss the qualifications, training, and experience that one must have to be an expert witness in a court case.

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