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Social Media & Homicide Investigations | Colonel Henry F. Williams Homicide Seminar Albany NY 2011


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The 24th Annual Colonel Henry F. Williams Homicide Seminar
Hosted by the New York State Police - September 17 - 22, 2011
Attendees are selected by their agencies and represent that portion of theinternational and national law enforcement community having the investigation of homicides as their primary responsibility and focus.

This 5-day seminar covers such critical areas of investigation as forensic pathology, dentistry, anthropology and video enhancement; crime scene reconstruction, cell phone technology, terrorism, and computer crimes.

Some of the Key cases that will be discussed are:

BTK Case (Witchita, Kansas)
Craigslist Killer (Boston, MA)

Among the conference faculty are Dr. Michael M. Baden presenting Forensic Pathology, Dr. Thomas D. Holland addressing Forensic Anthropology, Dr. Lowell J. Levine on Forensic Odontology, and Dr. Henry C. Lee discussing High Profile Cases.

For attendees to obtain more information on the seminar, see the 2-page printable brochure on The 24th Annual Colonel Henry F. Williams Homicide Seminar. For Vendor opportunities please click Vendor Prospectus on link:

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Social Media & Homicide Investigations | Colonel Henry F. Williams Homicide Seminar Albany NY 2011

  1. 1. Social MediaHomicide Investigations by Scott Mills
  2. 2. 2008 Interpol + Social MediaPrevent/SolveCrime @Interpol_ICPOFor full presentation at 5th Annual Interpol FugitivesConference Nov/2008 Click ‘Documents’ tab
  3. 3. Relationships +Technology Internet Violence Prevention
  4. 4. Key Messages• Social Media Helps to Prevent And Solve Crimes Together With Police and community.• Relationships + Technology Strategy Works• Community - Police - Media Crime Stoppers Partnerships Are Needed To Prevent And Solve Crimes Worldwide• Homicide Officers Need To Use Social Media for both communications and investigations• Purpose + Process = Payoff + Potential• Social Media Policy, human resource allocation and proper equipment should be a #1 priority for every Homicide Team.
  5. 5. Presenter | Scott Mills • Social Media Officer • Corp Comm | Toronto Police Service • Social Media Adviser QuickTimeª and a decompressor are needed to see this picture. • • QuickTimeª and a decompressor are needed to see this picture. • QuickTimeª and a decompressorare needed to see this picture. • + TorontoBMX • Wordpress: • • • • Google Plus
  6. 6. Reference Social Media Presentations on SlideShareLinkedIn
  7. 7. *TorontoPolice* Youtube |Facebook | Twitter | UStream
  8. 8. Crime Stoppers International Facebook Profile
  9. 9. Crime Stoppers World Getting Networked in #SM
  10. 10. @CSIWorld Twitter
  11. 11. Public Like Crime Stoppers Social Media CommunityChannels + Appeal Channels
  12. 12. Plain Clothes Professional Facebook Profile• (Profile)
  13. 13. Uniform Professional Facebook
  14. 14. Facebook Page Unlimited “Likes”
  15. 15. Presentation Collaborator Det/Sgt Frank Skubic
  16. 16. First Social Media Experience “14 Take Skubic”
  17. 17. Toronto Demographics • Town of York – 1973 • City of Toronto – 1834 • Population - 2.48 million people (5.5 million in the GT G • 140 languages and dialects spoken • 47 % Visible Minority •South Asian 12.0 % •Chinese 11.4 % •Black 8.4 % •Filipino 4.1% •Latin American at 64,860 or 2.6 per cent • 44.7% Youth and Young Working age group (15-44 yrs)
  18. 18. Toronto AttractionsPride Week Scotiabank Caribbean FestivalToronto International Film Festival TD Canada Trust Jazz FestivalHonda Indy
  19. 19. Homicide Squad S/I Mark Saunders Unit Comm ander @TPS Hom icide 2 Administrative Staff E-Disclosure Team 1 Team 2 Team 3 Cold CaseOperational Inspector Operational Inspector Operational Inspector D/Sgt, 3 Det, 1 D/C 4 D/Sgts 4 D/sgts 4 D/Sgts 6 Detectives 6 Detectives 6 Detectives 6 Detective Constables 6 Detective Constables 6 Detective Constables Major Case Management
  20. 20. Statistics Year # Solved Clearance % Firearm 2011 34 YTD 23 67.65 19 2010 62 29 46.77 32 2009 62 36 58.06 37 2008 70 44 62.86 36 2007 86 60 69.77 43 TORONTO HOMICIDES LAST 5 YEARS100 90 86 80 70 70 Average 62 62 60 50 40 34 30 20 10 0 "2007" "2008" "2009" "2010" "2011" ytd YEAR
  21. 21. Toronto Police Service Social Media Strategy• 2010 - 2011• Lauri Stevens Laws Communications• Policy for communications• Policy for investigations• Led by Deputy Chief Peter Sloly• Corporate Communications Team• 170 officers trained by end of 2011• Training team led by Sgt Tim Burrows• Traffic, Community Mobilization, Specialty Units, Police Divisions, Individual Officers
  22. 22. Official Toronto PoliceSocial Media Facebook Page
  23. 23. Official Toronto PoliceSocial Media Terms of Use
  24. 24. Official Toronto PoliceHomicide Squad #FB Page
  25. 25. Individual Homicide Officers Facebook + Twitter
  26. 26. Officer In Charge@TPSHomicide
  27. 27. Investigative Tool – Internet Homicide 46 Web Page Hits April 2010 70 60 50 40 30Total Hits 20 10 0 2010-04-01 2010-04-05 2010-04-09 2010-04-14 2010-04-20 2010-04-03 2010-04-07 2010-04-12 2010-04-16 2010-04-22Month – 279 Page hits April 19 – 63 April 20 - 27
  28. 28. Overcoming Cultural Barriers – Reaching your Target Audience
  29. 29. Reaching a target audience
  30. 30. Imbedding Video
  31. 31. Drawing Interest
  32. 32. Search Warrants + Production Orders• MLAT - treaty• Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty• Jurisdiction issues• Bogged down in bureacracy• Facebook used to have an office in Canada but that is no longer• We don’t just need Facebook -- it is all of social media• Need to streamline the MLAT system - mutual collaboration between law enforcement and social media providers worldwide• Need gov’t coordination and regulation
  33. 33. Social Media | Traditional Media• Balance between the integrity of the investigation and the public’s right to know• Photos of witnesses or accused can be accessed by traditional media and the public as soon as their names are known and posted…• Potentially compromising ID evidence for a trial - what do we do with this..• Example of Ed Boyd video - specifically telling media NOT to release photo .. They did 12hrs later anyways BEFORE investigators had chance to show photo line up
  34. 34. Go Forward Strategy Toronto Police Homicide• @Fskubic wants to see…• Full time staff member in Homicide office overseeing communications and investigations for social media• All homicide officers trained in use of social media for communications and investigations• As each case is assigned, social media be engaged for communications and investigations immediately and linked to major case management file manager
  35. 35. Promote Social Media• Homicide officers need to promote to the public that they approachable by the public in social media• The public can communicate with them via facebook and twitter• For example
  36. 36. Use of SM by Homicide Copsto Reveal Photos From Crime Scenes• This drives traffic to your social media accounts - fans, followers and Likes that increase your reach• Drives main stream media to your accounts as a ‘go to’ account for newsworthy items to fuel traditional media
  37. 37. SM As Investigative Tool Tracking of IP Address of Person of Interest• Investigative technique of posting a photo and tracking if a certain IP address views the photo several times• It is a clue if an IP address from a specific location hits on the link several times - suspect may be in p
  38. 38. Full Message Gets Out• In social media the homicide cop’s full message gets out there .. Not an ‘edited’ version as often occurs with traditional media• Wire tap Stimulation “sentence” .. Traditional media leaves it out…• @PeelPoliceMedia homicide case post on twitter from Henry F. Williams Homicide Conference today is front page on the largest circulation newspaper in Canada
  39. 39. @PeelPoliceMediaTweet Makes Front Page @TorontoStar
  40. 40. Personalization of Message Trust of Homicide Cop• Social media allows the public to see that the homicide cop really cares• Frank Skubic posts his entire script into the text portion of his youtube videos, and facebook “notes”• Both the media and the public like this• Increases the accuracy of the reporting by both traditional media and new media (bloggers etc)
  41. 41. Toronto HomicideSolves Case Using Youtube
  42. 42. Purpose+ Process = Payoff + Potential• Peter Code video appealing for 2nd suspect … on youtube from crime scene resulted in arrested party in another jursdiction wanting to talk ‘to the officer in the video” about name of 2nd suspect.• D/Sgt Peter Code organized OHIA talk on this 2008 . .. Is not training officers at Canadian Police College to use social media for homicide investigations..
  43. 43. Geo Locations | “Check Ins” Facebook | Foursquare QuickTimeª and a decompressorare needed to see this picture. • Crime scene check ins are a great tool for investigators to appeal for information • Ready made witness list at scene • If not doing a check it, missing lots of potential evidence • POTENTIAL FOR ALIBI TO BE CREATED • Critics say info management is challenge • NEED MAJOR CASE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM integerated with social media investigator on all cases.
  44. 44. Tagging of Facebook Photos• Potential for suspect Id• Potential for abuse• Great way to appeal for info• Great way to raise awareness + trust for police• Great way to viral market education on anonymous tips to Crime Stoppers
  45. 45. Location Tagging Foursquare and Facebook• Be Aware of potential to create an alibi• Facebook ‘friends’ can “check in” a friend to a place they are not at … however this will me minimized with the end of Facebook Places … and location tagging to be post specific…
  46. 46. All Homicide Cops Need A Smart Phone• BBM ‘groups’ for back and forth talk is good - BBM messages encrypt before they hit the RIM server ..So back and forth chat between investigative team is not accessible for capture and disclosure .. There is a NEED for day to day chat among team members -- this ‘chat’ needs to be kept professional .. And creates transparency and is easily disclosed by the social media officer coordinator having the messages e-mailed to a central source …
  47. 47. Investigative Notes All Done On Smart Phone• No need to hand write notes… do it all as you go ..on BBM and e-mail to case manager who inputs it all for actions in to major case management system• Creates efficiency and transparency for the investigations
  48. 48. WEBDOC All Homicide Cases in SM in Toronto• Reference document of all homicide appeals that have been made in social media in Toronto•
  49. 49. STAFFING LEVELS• We need to get into the 21st Century• Significant human resources need to be added to social media
  50. 50. Importance of Live Streaming• Timing is everything• Info needs to go out from the official source in a timely fashion• Risks of live streaming - unrehearsed.. Once say something can’t take it back .. No differnce between a live media srum..
  51. 51. Live Streaming or Youtube video.. Or Both• Live Stream video can be flipped to Youtube immediately• |• A rehearsed video prepared just for Youtube eliminates the potential for a slip up..• Value in both formats --- have both available to use …
  52. 52. Message From CanadianAssociation of Chiefs of Police Past President William Blair•
  53. 53. Why Do Police Need To Engage Social Media?“There’s an important conversation going on andwe know we have to be a part of it, and it’s a meansby which we can reach a very broad audience, atargeted, focused audience in order to provideinformation (and) to learn from that discussionthat’s taking place. It’s really important that weparticipate.”Chief William Blair