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Seminar Title:  
Crime Scene Investigation and Reconstruction

DATES:  8/17/2020 through 8/19/2020

INSTRUCTOR(S):  Thomas Martin

LOCATION:  Ascension Parish Sheriff's Dept Training Center - 9094 St Landry Road, Gonzales, LA  70737

HOTEL:  Clarion Inn & Conference Center  - Gonzales, LA  800-946-5432
Contact Hotel for Current Rates

COURSE REGISTRATION FEE:  $350.00 Includes all training materials, and a Certificate of Completion.

Instructor Bio

Thomas L Martin, Jr
New York State Police (Retired)
Tom Martin is a career crime scene investigator, retiring from the New York State Police after 22 years of service. As the senior investigator in charge of the forensic crime scene unit, Tom holds several certifications, and regularly provides expert forensic testimony in various state and federal courts. Tom’s training and experience encompass several fields of expertise, including: forensic crime scene processing, latent print processing and identification, blood stain pattern analysis, forensic composite art, excavation of human remains, forensic entomology collection, digital imaging technology and photo enhancement. He has served as a consultant for National Institute of Justice, and is currently a member of the National Institute of Justice’s Technical Working Groups for Sensor and Surveillance and General Forensics Technology. Tom is a nationally recognized speaker who has instructed at numerous forensic training seminars across the United States, including the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, The National Institute of Justice Annual Conferences and Technology Fairs, and the Smithsonian Institute. Tom is a faculty member of the National College of District Attorneys and a former instructor for the International Association of Chiefs of Police, (IACP). He has lectured, on several occasions in Washington, D.C., providing presentations to executive officials of the National Institute of Justice and members of the United States Congress. In addition to appearing on Court TV as an expert guest analyst, Tom has appeared on several forensic related television shows, including: the HBO series “Autopsy”, the Court TV series “Trace Evidence” “Forensic Files”, “On the Case with Paula Zahn”, and has filmed several episodes for the Discovery Channel and A&E. He is the author of the Crime Scene Forensics: A Field Guide for the First Responder pocket guide series published by Looseleaf Law.

Pre-Payment is not required to register or attend IN-PERSON seminars. Pre-payment is required for WEBINARS and ONLINE COURSES.


Course Objectives

Crime Scene Investigation and Reconstruction involves much more than the scientific testing of evidence. Crime scene investigation involves making certain observations about the scene, properly documenting those observations, and collecting physical evidence from the scene. The physical evidence documented and collected from the scene, will later be used to validate or invalidate testimony or other investigative leads. Physical evidence is powerful; as it is difficult to argue with something that you can physically see.

This course is designed to address the responsibilities of all personnel who will be investigating crime scenes, including first responding patrol officers, case detectives, supervisors, coroners/death scene investigators, and laboratory analysts. Emphasis will be placed on the documentation and collection of physical evidence that will be used to reconstruct events.

Role of Physical Evidence

Evidence from the crime scene may give the investigator information as to who was involved at a scene, what may have occurred at a scene, when an action took place, where it occurred and how it occurred. Scene evidence may provide supportive or non-supportive evidence of a victim’s, suspect’s or witness’s statement. Information gained through crime scene analysis may allow the investigator to evaluate statements made by victims, suspects and witnesses as to what occurred during a particular incident. A statement from the subject may or may not fit with the overall scene evidence.

Evidence vs Information

Crime scene investigators examine crime scenes in search of physical evidence, which has taken on a context of being affiliated with something that is scientific in nature, such as fingerprints, bullets, bloodstains, or other biological material. Physical evidence however, extends beyond that which is scientific, and the crime scene investigator should be aware of the importance of non-scientific evidence. Various types of physical evidence will be discussed.

Recognizing and properly collecting scientific evidence is obviously important in any crime scene investigation. Information however, can come in many forms and is not necessarily limited to scientific evidence. The available avenues in which to uncover physical evidence, as well as information important to the investigation will be discussed in detail.

Scene Diagrams

The importance of completing accurate diagrams at a given crime scene can not be overstated. A quality scene diagram is used to document the crime scene layout, orientation and interrelationships of structures, objects and evidence. Accurate and sufficient measurements should be taken in order to produce the scene diagram to scale if necessary. Methods for producing quality scene diagrams will be discussed, and will include instruction on obtaining the measurements necessary to produce the diagram to scale.

Use of Forensic Technology

Advancements in forensic technology will be discussed to include equipment and chemical sprays available to detect latent evidence.

Recognition and Documentation of Blood Evidence

Blood evidence can speak volumes regarding the events surrounding an assault or death. Blood evidence should be properly documented and collected to facilitate DNA analysis as well as the interpretation of stains. Proper photography and collection methods will be addressed.

Shooting Scene Reconstruction

There are many aspects to shooting scene reconstruction, however most of the mechanics involved in this type of reconstruction are very straight forward. Attendees will be made aware aware of the dynamics of a bullet being fired, and the flight path of that bullet after it has been discharged from the weapon. Scale diagrams greatly assist in demonstrating bullet trajectories, and will be appropriately applied. Instruction will be given on the identification and collection of evidence that is crucial to reconstructing shooting scenes.

Gunshot wounds may take on different appearances depending on many variables, such as: the distance to the victim from which the bullet was fired, whether the bullet struck an intermediate surface prior to striking the victim, the caliber of the weapon used, etc… Detailed photo and illustrative examples will be given in order to properly explain the different types and appearances of gunshot wounds.

Officer Involved Shooting Investigations

There are very few incidents that cause greater impact on a police department than shooting incidents involving officers in the performance of duty. In addition to shooting reconstruction evidence, investigators, supervisors, and patrol officers should also be aware of evidence that may go toward precipitating events, or aggravating factors. Locations, distances, and time, all become vitally important and the significance of each will discussed at length. Specific situations, including shooting at moving vehicles will also be discussed.

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