Reviewing the Crime Scene—Picking Apart the Prosecution’s Work

Professional investigators are fact checkers, not advocates; but shoddy work or unscrupulous work by the prosecution should be exploited. A professional investigator with proficiency in police procedures can help you find flaws in work conducted by the police and the prosecution.

If the officer-in-charge provides a less-than-detailed narrative description, there may be a problem hiding behind his omissions. Are the first responder’s notes consistent with the OIC’s notes? Are there pages missing? (Are the pages numbered?) Details, details, details…

You will likely find it beneficial to have your professional investigator visit the crime scene, take pictures, make sketches, verify sight lines, etc. This simple act can turn up revealing inconsistencies.

“Why not part out some of the legwork to a qualified professional investigator, leaving you free to focus on matters of law?”

Example: A key witness told police that he saw the defendant beat the victim with a shovel in the alleyway. Police report indicated that witness lived in Apt. 7B. After comparing the crime scene sketches and photographs with the actual building, the investigator realized that apt 7B faced the street, with no windows facing the alleyway. There was no way the key witness in Apt. 7B could see a shovel fight, or anything else, in the alleyway.

The investigator spent two hours on site, measuring, videotaping, and drawing the scene. Upon return to the office, the investigator made a simple two-dimensional sketch showing the exact place of the crime in the alley and the view the witness had from unit 7B. The police tried to explain, but…

Turns out, the witness had a few outstanding warrants when this crime occurred, completely unrelated. The police, based on his later testimony, had indicated that if he said he saw the crime, they would forget about the outstanding warrants. Details, details, details…

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