VR for Crime Scenes

Virtual Reality provides many interesting applications across society.  As it pertains to crime scene investigations, VR is looked at as a way to recreate the scene in a format that allows investigators to “visit” and analyze the scene without actually entering it.  Obviously this dramatically reduces the chance of contamination and increases the availability of the scene to more people for longer periods of time.


Test for age of bloodstains

Bloodstains have much useful information that can used to indicate various components of how an event unfolded.  This is a foundational principle of bloodstain pattern analysis. Additionally, the source of blood is a focus of DNA analysis.  However, there may be more that can be gleaned from bloodstains. Commonly, when we encounter bloodstains at scenes there may be questions as to when the events occurred or even if the bloodstains were part of a previous event.  Now there is some interesting research in helping to determine the age of bloodstains.


Mobile access to fingerprint databases

Visionations has been a pioneer in this arena here in the US. Using CrimePad to interface with AFIS systems in the field to generate possible leads while the scene is still being processed has been a vision for a while. Visionations is currently exploring this opportunity with all the major AFIS vendors in the US.


Will the Nation’s Newest Crime Labs Avoid the Troubles Faced by Some Labs in 2013?

2013 was marked by experiences at opposite ends of the spectrum for the nation’s crime labs.

Multiple jurisdictions – including Kansas City, Nashville, Mississippi, and Washington DC – have built new crime labs. Many of these have state of the art technology and facilities. Still other jurisdictions, such as Cincinnati and Memphis, are seeking responsible solutions for much needed improvements in their crime lab facilities. This signifies that communities across the country consider these labs and services to be a priority even in these fiscally constrained times.

On the other hand, 2013 also included numerous instances of labs either being under suspicion of having or being found to have a variety of significant problems. Continue reading

Cutting Edge Technology for Law Enforcement is Alive and Well – But How Do You Buy It?

It took only a glance into the Exhibit Hall of the Pennsylvania Convention Center last week to get a sense of modern policing. Booths of hundreds of exhibitors at the 2013 conference of the International Association of Chiefs of Police filled the hall, with the air pierced routinely with bursts of simulated gunfire and sirens. Vehicles from the latest in patrol cars to high tech helicopters and mobile command centers drew lots of attention. Even more common than these “big ticket” items were firearms, the latest software applications (including CrimePad®), uniforms, and other gear.

Whether it is a million dollar mobile command center or a hundred dollar backpack, all these products have one thing in common – somebody in the organization needs to know or figure out how to buy it. It might seem that getting the buy-in to make the purchase might be the hard part. In some cases that’s true. Unfortunately, sometimes it easy the easiest part! Continue reading

Are Law Enforcement Data Really Safe in the Cloud?

Searching Google for “Is My Stuff Safe in the Cloud?” produces 3,280,000 results. Likely many more people have wondered about than actually asked the question. Whether you are a parent wondering about your kid’s grades being stored there or a CIO leading enterprise wide efforts to “move to the Cloud,” this is a fundamental question you will face. The answer, like those to many of life’s questions, is “it depends.” Well-designed and managed Cloud services can provide unprecedented levels of security and other benefits. But how do you know if that’s what you have? Continue reading

Are You Protecting Bad Data?

Data security is essential. If you are in the business, it’s important for your customers to know the data security you offer them. Unfortunately, there’s a really important question that often goes unasked, even by companies that make significant financial investments in these data security activities: Are the data worth protecting? Continue reading

Jeff Gurvis Presents at ASCLD on “Crime Scene Technologies – Present and Future”

This month, Jeff Gurvis presented at the 2013 American Society of Crime Lab Directors (ASCLD) in Durham, North Carolina. Jeff, a forensic scientist and nationally recognized expert, talked about crime technologies such as panoramic image acquisition and 3D laser scanning. He also discussed forensic technologies such as rapid DNA and antibody profiling. Jeff’s takeaway message described his vision for the real future for crime scene management and investigation – leveraging emerging technologies to facilitate broad-based collaboration. Continue reading

Innovation is Needed in the Face of Continuing Law Enforcement Budget Challenges

Law enforcement agencies, like organizations throughout all sectors of the economy, are faced with ongoing budget constraints. Departments all over the country are confronting reduced staffing levels; in many cases being unable to replace officers that retire. Funding for civilian personnel is similarly constrained. Of course the purchase of goods and services has also taken a hit as departments try to find savings elsewhere so that as many officers as possible can stay out on the streets.

Unlike other sectors of the economy, law enforcement cannot sustain a “do less with less” philosophy in the face of these constraints. Citizens cannot tolerate a reduction in public safety. Thus, the question is “what can be done to offset or mitigate the budgetary limitations faced by so many agencies?Continue reading