How Crime Scene Investigations Are Really Done

#Crime

Wed, Jun 27th, 2012 12:00 by capnasty NEWS

If you have ever wondered what happens behind the yellow tape in crime scenes, this article in The Guardian follows John Cockram, crime scene manager on how he approaches his investigations.

The anticipation kicks in as soon as I get the call. I get in the car, put on some classical music and start thinking. Every crime scene is different. It's nowhere near what you expect.

When I arrive, I get a briefing from whoever's at the scene. You listen but you don't necessarily agree. I call it ABC. Assume nothing. Believe nobody. Check everything.

Maybe it's the first time a police officer has seen a body. They'll give a fantastic description of a decomposing corpse, but I can see that with my own eyes. I'll ask: did you smell anything? Was there a window open? How did you kick the door in? Was there a key? Did the key come flying out? I'm trying to get them to see further than the body on the floor.

When I arrive at a scene, it's my thinking time. It's now sterile. The circus hasn't arrived, so I get suited up and go in with my notepad. What am I seeing? What am I hearing? I have a quirk: I tend to follow the left-hand wall around a room. If you go to Hampton Court maze and follow the left-hand wall, you get to the middle. It's a good technique.

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