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1. You are the investigator at a homicide. Describe the steps you would follow to maintain chain of custody of the evidence.
Establishing a chain of custody is ensure the integrity of the evidence by establishing and maintaining a chain of custody is vital to an investigation. This will safeguard against subsequent allegations of tampering, theft, planting, and contamination of evidence.
To maintain or preserve the chain of custody, you should take the following steps:
A. Document location of the scene and time of arrival of the death investigator at the scene.
B. Determine custodian(s) of evidence, determine which agency(ies) is/are responsible for collection of specific types of evidence, and determine evidence collection priority for fragile/fleeting evidence.
C. Identify, secure, and preserve evidence with proper containers, labels, and ...
You are the investigator at a homicide. This solution describes the steps you would follow to maintain chain of custody of the evidence. Supplemented with a highly informative resource of step-by-step guidelines for investigators.
Chain of Custody Processing
This week, you examined the process of locating and documenting evidence at a crime scene. Pieces of evidence pass through many hands between the crime scene and the courtroom. Properly managing the evidence throughout the entire process is critical.
Describe what is meant by "chain of custody" and why it is important to an investigation.
Provide an example to show how improper custody can damage a case. (Hint: Put yourself in the position of the defense attorney.)
Improper custody can certainly impair or even destroy an investigation. Is the insistence on chain of custody in the best interests of justice? Should valuable physical evidence be excluded from a case, solely due to improper custody? What might happen if the chain-of-custody requirement is removed? Explain and justify your position.
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