4605          CRIME SCENE PHOTOGRAPHY AND SKETCHES

 

B.                  Procedure

 

1.                   The photographs of a crime scene shall be made by a patrol CSI or Criminalistics technician.

 

2.                   The individual in charge of a crime scene shall determine whether the completion of a sketch is indicated based on the complexities of the investigation and the nature of the photographs taken.

 

3.                   Crime scene sketches shall include accurate dimensions, identifying characteristics such as address or room number, location of fixed and movable objects including victims, if any, location of evidence, compass direction arrows, and the date, time, and name of the investigator completing the rough sketch.

 

4.                   When a crime scene sketch is made, it shall include accurate measurements of all fixtures, locations, and physical evidence noted.  A qualified draftsperson shall prepare a final drawing, to scale, for court presentation.

 

5.                   Major and some minor crime scenes shall be photographed to record the condition of the scene as found.

 

6.                   Photography used in investigations is frequently a time-limited activity in which there is only one opportunity to correctly complete the task.  Depending on the nature of the crime, incident or documentation required, conditions may dictate the selection and use of equipment and techniques.  Conventional film-based cameras are recommended for use as the primary image capture device.  Digital still imaging can be used when the performance of the equipment can be shown to meet the anticipated needs.

 

C.                  Definitions

 

Refer to definitions in section 8322 (D).

 

4730          ELECTRONIC/DIGITAL EVIDENCE

 

A.                  Policy

 

Preservation of electronic evidence presents unique problems, as well as unique opportunities.  Proper collection and handling of electronic devices, data and/or imaging files will protect the integrity of various forms of potential evidence which may not be apparent but which may later be developed through expert analysis.  Electronic devices may themselves be evidence of a crime, tools of an offense, or may simply be used as storage of evidence.   EXAMPLE:  A computer may have been stolen, used to make counterfeit documents, used to store drug trafficking records, or used to attack other electronic systems.  It is important that the Police Department recognize, protect, seize and search electronic devices in accordance with applicable statutes, best practices, and guidelines.

 

B.                  Procedure

 

1.                   Computers

 

a.                   Preserve for potential fingerprints.

 

b.                   Immediately restrict access to computer(s) and isolate from phone lines.

 

c.                   If computer is “OFF”, DO NOT TURN ON.

 

d.                   If computer is “ON”, either consult a computer specialist if available or:

I           Photograph screen, then disconnect all power sources.

II           Place evidence tape over each drive slot.

III          Photograph/diagram and label back of computer components with existing connections for later reassembly.

IV         Package and transport as fragile, and keep away from hostile environments such as magnets and radio transmitters.

 

e.                   If the computer is on a network or a business computer, consult a computer specialist since pulling the plug could severely damage the system, disrupt legitimate business, or create liability.

 

f.                     Seize computer peripherals such as manuals, monitor, disks, printer, scanner, cables, and other devices connected to Computer Processor Unit.

 

2.                   Electronic/Digital Media (Media [other than film] used for the recording and storage of computer files, images, video or other electronic formats).

 

a.                   Electronic/Digital media, seized as evidence, shall be packaged securely and booked into the Property Section.

 

b.                   Prior to any other usage, processing, reproduction, or analysis of seized electronic/digital media, designated Criminalistics Personnel shall archive (record in unalterable format) electronic/digital media prior to the creation of a working copy.  Original evidence will be returned to the Property Section.

 

c.                   “Working copies” of archived data may be obtained through established Criminalistics request procedures.  Working copies may be retained in the Criminalistics Unit or by assigned investigators.

 

d.                   Techniques applied to working copies of electronic/digital media for enhancement purposes and later court presentation will be accomplished by or requested through the Criminalistics Unit

 

e.                   A history of applied techniques used in electronic/digital processing, enhancement, or analysis will be recorded and stored with the Criminalistics Unit.

 

3.                   Wireless Telephones

 

a.                   Unless an emergency exists, do not access the device.  In emergency situations, document actions associated with the manipulation of the device.

 

b.                   If the device is “ON”, do not turn it “OFF”.  Turning it off could activate lock-out feature.   Write down or photograph all information on display.  Power down prior to transport and take any power supply cords present.

 

c.                   If the device is “OFF”, leave it “OFF”.   Turning it on could alter evidence.

 

d.                   Locate and seize any instructional manuals concerning the device.

 

e.                   Potential evidence from a wireless telephone includes: numbers called, speed dial numbers, caller ID for incoming calls, information in memory such as names, addresses, pin numbers, voice mail access number and passwords, debit and calling card numbers, and E-mail/Internet access information.

 

4.                   Paging Devices

 

a.                   Potential evidence contained in paging devices includes numbers, text messages, voice messages, incoming and outgoing messages.

 

b.                   Once the paging device is no longer in proximity to suspect, turn it off.  Continued access to electronic communications over pager without proper authorization can be construed as unlawful interception of electronic communication.

 

c.                   Locate and seize device manuals.

 

5.                   Facsimile Machines

 

a.                   Fax machines may contain: speed dial lists, stored faxes, fax transmission logs, header line information, and clock settings.

 

b.                   Record telephone line number fax is plugged into.  Header line should be the same as the phone line, however, the user may have different header for illicit purposes.

 

c.                   Locate and seize device manuals.

 

d.                   Powering down may cause loss of last number dialed or stored faxes.

 

6.                   Caller ID Devices

 

a.                   Document all stored data prior to seizure or loss of data may occur.

 

b.                   Caller ID devices may contain telephone and subscriber information from incoming phone calls.

 

7.                   Smart Cards (plastic card holding a microprocessor chip or magnetic information).

 

a.                   Photograph card and record characteristics.  Examine for alteration or tampering.

 

b.                   Be suspicious when numerous cards are located or when cards are located in the presence of a computer or other electronic devices.

 

c.         Ask:     Who is card issued to?

                        Who issued the card?

                        What are the uses of the cards?

                        Why does the person have numerous cards?

                        Can this computer or device alter the card?

 

C.                  Definitions

 

Refer to definitions in section 8322 (D).

 

 

4731      Conventional and Electronic Image Recording Media (Film, Video Tape, Floppy Disks, PCMCIA Cards, etc.)

 

B.             Procedures

 

 

1.                   A chain of custody must be maintained for the film, videotape or image files upon which original images are recorded. For digital images, the chain of custody should document the identity of the personnel who had custody and control of the digital image file from the point of capture to archiving. Once the file has been archived, the chain of custody should document the identity of the personnel who had custody and control of the archived image.

 

2.                   Original photographs, obtained by department personnel, will be identified with standard information regarding their creation including; photographer, case number, date, and location.

 

3.                   Unprocessed film and digital storage media will be turned over to the Criminalistics unit for processing, archiving and filing by case number.

 

4.                   Image files will be archived prior to any other image handling.  After archiving, working copies can be made, for image processing, analysis, and reproduction, from the archived file.

 

5.                   A history of techniques applied in image processing and analysis will be recorded and stored with processed image files.

 

6.                   Film and image storage media obtained from others working on behalf of this department, i.e. AOA, SANE, etc., will be booked into the Property section and released to the Criminalistics supervisor, or his designee, for processing and archival storage.

 

7.                   Film and image storage media seized as evidence will be booked into the Property section and will be available for check out by personnel responsible for processing, analysis, and reproduction.  Prior to any other image handling, image files will be archived, in accordance with departmental policy.  The original film or image files will be returned to property for storage and disposition.

 

 

C.             Definitions

 

Refer to definitions in section 8322 (D).

 

 

8322     PHOTOGRAPHY AND IMAGING FORMATS      

 

 

B.         Procedure

 

1.                   Unprocessed film and digital photography, created by the department in a criminal investigation or which is related to a case report number, will be promptly submitted to the Criminalistics Unit for processing, archiving, and filing under the case number.

 

2.                   Photography not connected to a criminal investigation or case number may be utilized for administrative purposes. (Such as public relations photographs, C-mug photographs and employee identification photographs, etc.)

 

3.                   Photography employed in investigations will be handled as potential evidence, whether or not it is intended for court presentation.

 

4.                   All technology, equipment and software utilized for investigative image acquisition, analysis and processing shall be approved by the Criminalistics Unit for standardization and system compatibility.

 

5.                   In order to preserve and maintain original image integrity and chain of custody, designated Criminalistics personnel will archive (record in unalterable format) all photography, submitted in digital format, as soon as possible and prior to any other application of image handling, enhancement, processing, analysis, of reproduction.  Processing techniques will not be conducted on the archived data file.

 

6.                   “Working copies” of archived data may be obtained following archival procedures.  All “working copies” will be so labeled.

 

7.                   All techniques applied in image processing and analysis will be conducted on “working copies” by designated Criminalistics personnel.  A complete history of applied techniques will be documented by the technician for later duplication of results during court presentations and will be documented in supplemental reports.

 

8.                   Techniques common to traditional darkrooms and digital imaging stations, such as cropping, dodging, burning, color balancing, and contrast adjustment that are used to achieve an accurate recording of an event or object, are standard processing steps. When the results of the steps can be observed and are visually verifiable, documentation of such steps is not considered mandatory except when the image is subjected to image analysis.

 

9.                   Techniques such as unsharp masking, multi-image averaging or integration, and Fourier analysis, that are used to increase the visibility of specific details in an image at the expense of other image details are standard processing steps. However, the use of such steps should be documented in supplemental reports in sufficient detail that comparably trained personnel can repeat the steps and produce the same output when the image is subjected to image analysis

 

10.               Archived photography data files will be maintained in a secure location within the Criminalistics Unit under controlled access.  Access is restricted to designated Criminalistics personnel.

 

11.               Personnel designated to archive, process, or enhance photographic images will receive applicable training prior to assignment.  The Criminalistics Unit will provide or coordinate training for department personnel utilizing imaging techniques.

 

C.         Rule

 

1.                   Original film negatives or imaging files shall not be altered.

 

2.                   All image files shall be protected by archiving prior to any other application of image handling, processing, analysis and/or reproduction techniques.

 

3.                   Archiving, storage, processing, and analysis of photography created by this department shall be the responsibility of the Criminalistics Unit.

 

4.                   Reproduction of photography created by this department shall be the responsibility of the Criminalistics Unit, in accordance with current records release policies.

 

D.                        Definitions

 

1.         Analysis

The extraction of information from an image beyond that which is readily apparent through visual examination.

 

2.         Archive

To record in an unalterable format.

The original image should be stored and maintained in an unaltered state. This includes maintaining original digital images in their native file formats. The following media are recommended for the preservation of original images because of their quality, durability, permanence, and reliability: Silver-based film with the exception of instant film, write-once compact disk recordable (CDR) digital versatile disk recordable (DVD-R) The following are not considered to be acceptable for the preservation of original images: Re-writable storage media, instant film, inkjet prints, solid ink prints, thermal wax paper prints, dye-sublimation prints, dry-silver prints, laser prints, or electro-static prints.

 

3.         Enhancement

Any processing intended to improve, or clarify the visual appearance of an image.

 

4.         Photography

The term “photography” used through this manual includes both film based and electronic imaging technologies.

 

5.         Processing

Any activity which transforms an input image into an output image.

 

6.         Verification

A process by which personnel identify an image as being an accurate representation of the scene or item.

 

7.         Working Copy

A copy of an original archived image file, videotape, etc. which is to be used in image processing and reproduction. Duplicates or copies should be used for working images when applicable.