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.

Friday, 13 July 2007

Red Herring

I don't usually like to criticize officers much especially as a) Most of those that blog, provide a link to me and b)relations between Civvies and Coppers are already frayed. But when they try to muscle in on my turf it gets me a bit grumpy.

Today I was rushed from a very important shopping errand (cakes for the Office!) to attend a Burglary where the Officer had announced to the victim that there were Footprints and Fingerprints everywhere and replayed this find across the radio. I looked at my colleague and we both rolled our eyes and groaned. 'Why?'you ask, shouldn't we be pleased that there is obviously evidence left at the scene helping identify an offender?. If that were the case then yes. But unfortunately experience has taught me that when an officer can see fingerprints they are usually dirty glovemarks and the footprints will probably be clumps of mud in the carpet.

Now this isn't a huge issue, you can forgive the Officers ignorance as over-enthusiastic optimism and they do not have that SOCO trained eye. But it does get the Victims hopes up, only for us to turn up and scupper them with a sharp intake of breath like a Car mechanic telling you bad news. Indeed this was the case today, the victim found it hard to accept at first because the nice Officer had told her about the 'evidence', but after a little explaining all was good and no cakes suffered as a result.

So if you are a Police Officer and you think you can see Fingerprints then they are probably not Fingerprints, when faced with this Paradox you should simply say 'Keep away/don't touch that area until the nice (handsome and rugged) Forensic Man turns up.'


Jinx to Policing said...

Good advice, i have yet in all honesty to see a fingerprint or footprint that was sutible for CSI to attend, and when ever I have been thinking 'hmmm they look like a nice pair of Nikes' i quickly call my CSI Guy and she soon puts me straight, or quickly wizzes around the corner gets the bugger lifted.

Gargoyle said...

Our guys were flat out with the opposite problem, too many Officers were putting "Nil forensic value" on their attendance sheets. Great if that's the case, but most times it was just a matter of the latent prints being simply that, LATENT.

CSI:UK said...

Had a guy, phone us up once asking us to fingerprint his bicycle after it had been left out in the rain. We declined his request, and he said 'Its got latent fingerprints all over them, I can see 'em.!!!'