Death investigation requires a team effort consisting of detectives, crime scene technicians, and forensic personnel. Positive outcomes are best realized when these components work together to collect, evaluate, reconstruct, and derive meaning from the available evidence.
The challenging 5-day (40 hour) Death Investigations course was designed for detectives, crime scene technicians, medico-legal death investigators, and others involved in the investigation of deaths. Through both lecture and practical exercises, investigators may expand their skill sets by learning and practicing methodologies for objective investigation and analysis of death scenes. Key concepts are reinforced through practical exercises. This is not a “checklist” course. Attendees will use critical thinking skills to analyze and investigate “hands on” historically based homicide investigations.
Classroom instruction and practical exercises include:
Procedures for managing crime scenes and addressing constitutional issues
Case management techniques to assess, organize, plan, and delegate investigation
Methods for identifying and evaluating physical and biological evidence, wounds, bloodstains, ballistics, witnesses, and other evidence
Evidence associated with child deaths, self-inflicted death, domestic violence, and accidental deaths
Capabilities and limitations of forensic analysis
Identifying basic bloodstain pattern characteristics in a crime scene
Identifying and evaluating evidentiary relationships to reconstruct events
Evaluating subjective and objective evidence through application of critical thinking
Flowcharts and timelines as investigative and analytical tools
Interview techniques to increase subject cooperation
Behavioral characteristics of violent crime offenders
Presenting investigations for prosecutorial evaluation
Course Requirements: The Death Investigations course is designed for personnel currently working or moving into death scene investigations. Course materials are provided in electronic format. Attendees should bring an electronic device with USB connection, basic office suite software, and preferably a laptop computer to access/save handouts, case materials, and fillable forms used in both lecture and practical exercises.