Recording the scene• There is no question that there is a limited amount of time that a crime scene stays undisturbed; in that time frame the scene must be accurately recorded in its original state before it is lost• This is a vital step for the presentation of the investigation to the courts
How do you record the scene?• There are several methods for recording the crime scene… • Photography • Computer drafts • Sketches * Rough sketches * Final sketches
Photography• The most important prerequisite for photographing a crime scene is having it its unaltered condition… why?• If items are changed, moved, or removed prior to photographing then they are not admissible in court• If anything must be moved prior to photographing it must be mentioned in a report with an explanation
• Photographs of the crime scene should be taken as completely as possible including… • The area the crime actually took place • All adjacent areas where important acts occurred before and after the crime • All walls within a room • All walls within adjacent rooms
• Any weapons, puncture marks, wounds, blood, and the surface under the body must also be photographed• If the crime scene includes a body then the position of the body, as well as the position relative to other parts of the room must be photographed.
• As physical evidence is discovered it must be photographed in its original state before it is removed for processing• If the size of an item is important, how can we show relative size in a picture?• Once an overview of the area an item is located has been photographed then a close up picture must also be taken to show details.
Sketches• Many of us in this room right now, like the investigators of a crime, do not have the talent to create an extremely detailed sketch of a crime scene…instead they start by making a rough sketch
Rough Sketch• A rough sketch needs to contain an accurate depiction of the dimensions of the scene and the important evidence within the scene• Distance measurements need to be made accurately to depict the size of the crime scene and the location of particular items in the crime scene by using a tape measure
Things to include• Designation of items in a sketch can be made by assigning a letter or number for the item and creating a legend for the items in the sketch• The sketch should also include compass, date, time, and incident description
Finished sketch• Drawn with care and concern for appearance and accuracy• Must reflect the information in the rough sketch to be admissible in court