Flashcards in Initial Response to Serious Crime Deck (23):
Not all homicides are readily identifiable as such. What are some ways a homicide may be initially reported to police?
- Report of a missing person
- Sudden unexplained death of an infant
- Unexplained death
- Report of an abduction
- Report of violence where no fatalities are anticipated
- Crime scene without a body present
- Hit and run vehicle collision
- Fatal fire
- Drug-related deaths.
When attending a crime scene as the first responder we use the investigation model of VAWSEIPO what does this stand for?
V - Victim
A - Appreciation
W - Witness
S - Scene
E - Exhibits
I - Ingredients
P - Powers
O - Offenders
What are the three key things to remember to do when first attending a crime scene?
Freeze, control, guard, and preserve the crime scene..
When first responding to a crime scene making appreciations while the investigation develops is important. What are the four steps of an appreciation?
1 - Aim
2 - Factors
3 - Courses open
4 - Plan (and execute)
When you first arrive at the scene of a serious crime you will conduct an appreciation, what should you main priority be?
Conduct a reconnaissance of the scene, establish who is present, this may include injured people or a hidden offender. The main priority during this will always be to ensure the safety of the attending Police members and to avoid unnecessary disturbance to the scene.
Once you have established who is at the scene the victim/s can be put into three categories, what are they?
- Alive and uninjured
- Alive but injured
- Shows no signs of life
Once you have made sure everyone at the scene is safe and has been given medical treatment and if needed removed for further treatment and there is no one else needing assistance what is the next main priority?
Preserving the scene
If someone is moved in the scene or removed from the scene for medical treatment what should you do?
- Note the original body position and record any movements.
- If the victim is removed from the scene gain the details of the ambulance crew and where they will be taking the victim, if possible have a detective accompany the victim to hospital. Otherwise, a detective should attend the hospital without delay.
If you are the detective attending the hospital for a victim of a serious crime there are 11 steps you should complete for the investigation. What are the first 4 steps?
1 - Obtain a medical opinion about the victim's current medical condition
2 - Seized the victim's clothing and other possessions as evidence
3 - Establish the victim's identity
4 - Obtain a pre-transfusion blood sample using Police Toxicology Kit containers.
If you are the detective attending the hospital for a victim of a serious crime there are 11 steps you should complete for the investigation. What are steps 5-9?
5 - Seize any discarded bandages used to cover gunshot wounds, and record the position on the victim where each bandage had been applied
6 - Arrange firearms residue samples in cases where firearm use is suspected, including from the victim of any apparent suicide involving a firearm
7 - Note and photograph any injuries
8 - Arrange DNA swabs to be taken from the victim's skin, where they would be relevant to the particular circumstances of the case.
9 - Obtain details of any and all people who visit or contact the victim.
If you are the detective attending the hospital for a victim of a serious crime there are 11 steps you should complete for the investigation. What are steps 10 and 11?
10 - Conduct a scoping interviw with the victim using appropriate open questions to establish what happened and who was involved; where this would not adversly affect the medical welfare of the victim.
If it is anticipated the victim may die, consider recording an immediate statement, whether the victim can sign or not.
11 - Conduct a preliminary interview with ambulance and emergency staff who treated the victim to establish what happened.
The fundamental responsibility of police employees is to preserve life. If you discover a body you must never assume a person is dead if there is the slightest possibility the person is still alive, what should you do?
Administer first aid and request and ambulance
In what condition does a boy have to be for you to not administer first aid and request an ambulance?
Badly decomposed or a mutilated corpse.
When you discover a body there are 12 steps your should take, what are steps 1 - 6?
1 - Consider calling an ambulance and administering first aid, if appropriate. If the victim has to be moved for this purpose, note the original body position and record any previous movements.
2 - Remain with the body until relieved by CIB or a supervisor.
3 - Arrange a doctor to pronounce life extinct, unless death is obvious, i.e. decapitation or badly decomposed body.
4 - Treat the 'victim' as a scene (do not move the body unnecessarily).
5 - Instruct medical staff to leave clothes on the body
6 - If medical treatment has been given then request that connecting tubes, needles, bandages, and other medical items are left 'in situ'.
When you discover a body there are 12 steps your should take, What are steps 7 - 12
7 - If possible, conduct scoping interviews with medical staff who treated the victim and establish their actions, apparent cause of death and injury type/s.
8 - Ascertain if the victim spoke to anyone before and record what was said.
9 - Record body position, lividity, obvious injuries and clothing
10 - Objectively record everything observed using all senses, including sight, sound, and smell. Include what is considered unimportant or non-evidential as after further investigation such information may become relevant.
11 - Record all exhibits
12 - Sketch a plan including the position of the body and position of exhibits.
When you are a scene guard and keeping a scene log what must you record in the log?
- Details, times and purposes of all people who enter, attempt to enter, or leave the crime scene
- Any other activity around the crime scene that you think is relevant to the case.
Why is it important to keep an accurate log when guarding a scene?
- To ensure there is no unauthorised entry into the scene
- To ensure the integrity of evidence or potential evidence is secured
- To maximise intelligent oportunities
- To manage contamination issues.
If you are going to brief someone who is going to be a scene guard what 10 duties must brief them on?
1 - Secure Scene
2 - Record Details
3 - Control movements
4 - Record movements
5 - Brief others
6 - Avoid disturbance
7 - Protect the scene
8 - Brief replacement
9 - Respect security
10 - Demonstrate courtesy
If there is a witness at the scene the information they hold may be crucial. It is important to have an initial interview with the witness, keep in mind they will be interviewed further in a more substantial way. What should your initial questioning with the witness cover?
- What happened
- Where exactly the incident happened
- When it happened
- Who was involved
- What the witness did
- Where the witness went
- What the witness touched
- Who touched the witness
- Who else was present
- Descriptions of who was present
- What did those other people present say/do
Some witnesses may have been so proximate to events, that it is likely evidence was transferred to the witness, from the victim, suspect, or from the scene itself. What types of evidence must you be mindful about and obtaining if possible?
Transferable evidence such as,
- Body fluids
- glass or other material
What should you consider doing to preserve and recover evidence from a forensically important witness?
- Immediate DNA swabs of an areas of the witness that the suspect may have touched
- Immediate DNA swabs of any blood present on the witness
- Immediate swabs of any other relevant stains present on the witness
- Forensic medical examination, i.e. fingernail scrapings, hair combing etc.
- Seizure of clothing and footwear
- Seizure of any items of property touched by the suspect.
What are some important things to consider when you have a forensically important witness?
- Avoid any potential cross contamination issues by arranging for witnesses, victims, and suspects to be transported separately in different vehilces
- Photographing witnesses at the scene enables future identification of witnesses; for example to assist CCTV enquires for O/C Witnesses' to use at court hearings
- Photograph any injuries suffered by witnesses.