If you are looking for Glamour, Gadgets and Grissom you won't find them here. Forget what you think you know about 'Forensics', these are the tales of one man and his brush. Of course these views do not represent the views of any Police Force or indeed reflect any Force Policies ya da ya.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

My First 'Hit'

Nothing is more rewarding than a young and enthusiastic CSI identifying their first suspect. One colleague of mine was so proud he framed his first 'Ident'. I didn't go that far, but I do remember my first ident and the Job well, it's kind of a Rite of Passage into the forensic world.

I had completed my induction training and after having a few months shadowing an experienced CSI, I had my training wheels removed and I was free to tackle as much volume crime as you could shake a synthetic bristled stick at!

A small business premises located on an industrial estate had it's fax machine and a laptop stolen from the reception area during trading hours, the officers who had attended asked that a member of our team come along and 'throw a bit of powder around'. I turned up an hour or so later to examine the scene. Basically our suspect had merely walked into the reception area, taken the items off the receptionists desk and walked out. The desk was behind a partitioned wall and had glass sliding hatch, the Receptionist told me she usually keeps the hatch shut to cut out the noise from the factory across the road so our suspect must have handled the hatch.

'Great!' thought I, nice smooth shiny surface and a definite area handled by offender. So off I go with my powder twizzling a brush like an expert and I develop about 12 marks off both surfaces. 'Wonderful!', but then my brain kicked in, this is a Public area it may be hard to prove, but wait!, there is CCTV evidence available, 'Brilliant!'. The CCTV had yet to be downloaded from the system so was still available for me to view, so I sat and watched as our man walks in, takes a quick look around in that suspicious shady manner that only scroats can pull off, places both hands sideways on the glass hatch(exactly the position I had just recovered marks from) and pulls the thing open, grabs his swag and legs it out the door. Within the week our chappie is identified and away we go with charging, bailing, sentencing. Yours truly doesn't even make the stand to give evidence in court as our suspect goes guilty under the weight of evidence against him. So one bad guy in jail and my first notch on my brush.

Looking back, I wish all my jobs were that easy and all offenders were just as stupid. Although I was immensely proud of myself at the time, I now realise that any half trained Monkey with a brush could have solved that one.


Roses said...

Wow! Our very own CSI. I have to say I was most disappointed that you haven't got The Who soundtrack running on your site, or pictures of tanned, beautiful people in shades.


I'm just saying 'hi' and like your stuff.

Mr Mans Wife said...

How many years has it been now CSI:UK? Do you still get the same buzz everytime you find the evidence that will convict someone?

CSI:UK said...

Ha, its only been 7 years as a CSI, do I make it sound like I'm an old sweat?

Identifying known offenders that you know are causing the majority of the Crime on your patch is good, because they are the career criminals and know how not to leave evidence behind, so being there when they slip up is great. They don't always lead to convictions but the intial arrests etc are enough to disrupt them for a week or two.

Roses, I have been toying with the idea of doing a mix CD of The Who tunes used in CSI, as our van has a CD player in it. I did get called out in the middle of the night to a job once and they were playing 'Who Are You' on the radio.

The Thin Blue Line said...

Nice one! It'll be a bit of a shame when he just gets a slap on the wrist at court, but you've done your part.

It must be a real buzz when you get the result through. I've got to say that all the CSI officers in our Force are really top people who even manage a smile after being called out at "Oh My God o'clock" to deal with a scene.

Nice one.

Girl*Next*Door said...

Bet that was a real buzz! Well done :o)
One thing though, do you not find it boring to painstakingly dust etc for prints? I think I might.. Patience is not one of my strongest attributes.
Also, say you do a really good job on somebody who has committed a crime & they get off with a reprimand/something equally soft, do you get really really frustrated after the work you've put in? Or do you just think "next time"? I know police bloggers have expressed how frustrated they get when somebdy gets off with just a warning etc.

Keep posting, your blog is a good read :o)

CSI:UK said...

It can be very rewarding, but there is a lot more effort from officers interviewing suspects, preparing files and convincing CPS than there ever is from me waving a brush about. Yes it is an integral part in some instances, but to be overly modest it's just part of the bigger picture.

So yeah when it goes wrong it is very frustrating for a lot of people. I remember spending 7 straight days of 12 hour shifts examining a Murder scene, for the offender to eventually get a manslaughter conviction after the Judge confused the Jury in his summing up. That upset a lot of people as everyone involved put in a lot of effort.

But for the small-fry Burglars, helping to get them convicted is good especially when you notice the Burglaries fall dramatically over the following months. But then they get released early and the whole dance starts again.

Miss Wannabe CSI said...

Hi CSI:UK, I'm currently a sixth year pupil at a high school in Edinburgh, and I am very interseted in becoming a CSI. I have done alot of research, and it seems that you need hardly any qualifications to be one. I am however interseted in a Criminology course at Caledonian University, but the job oppotunities following the degree have more involvement in law, probation, social and police work. How did you become a CSI, and what did you have to do to achieve it?

CSI:UK said...

Apologies I'm on holiday at the moment, I get back in a few weeks, when I'm
at my computer with more info, in the meantime check out the Forensic
courses that are run at Lancashire Uni and I think Middlesborough Uni.

Email me and I'll reply soon.