ICSIA Examiner's Newsletter


ICSIA Examiner March 2013
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Daryl W. Clemens, Editor


From the Editor

It's a cold and rainy night here in Grand Rapids. I for one am ready for spring. Last year at this time we were in the 70's, this year not so much. Overnight lows are supposed to be in the teens with freezing rain/snow mixed. On the up side, only two more overnight shifts and I go back to a (slightly) more reasonable schedule.

We have another good issue for you this month, with a couple of articles on death scene investigation, some photography from Hayden and a review of some case note software for your smart phone.

Got comments/questions or want to submit an article for The Examiner? e-mail me: Daryl W. Clemens


President's Message

We have been busy working on a couple of projects for the members. Can’t say right now but hopefully soon we will be able to talk about it. Meanwhile we are gaining members but would certainly like to see more. Please pass the word and get others to join us! The more members we have the more information we can all share and learn from each other.
We invite all of you to submit an article or technique to be published in the Examiner. I have submitted a couple of IR images on black cloth that you will see published in this edition. I am sure you too have something to share with us. Please submit the images to Daryl.
We currently have one individual taking the certification examine and doing very well. The examine process takes a few months to compete.
There was an article in the latest edition of the Evidence Technology Magazine that when I read I literally laughed out loud. The technique they were talking about using black magnetic powder to develop “fresh” prints on paper is against the proper way of processing paper from a latent print examiners standpoint as chemicals are the best method to process the paper. The reasoning is that paper is porous and therefore the oils and water in the print will be absorbed by the paper and chemicals such as Ninhydrin would be better than powder. However the published technique is not new and has been used as long as I remember, over 40 years. But the article also made me realize that what I and others have been doing for years may not be information shared with others. So what we take for grant others are learning as “new”.
Stay safe!
Hayden B. Baldwin, Executive Director
International Crime Scene Investigators Association (ICSIA)

Why Suicide Needs: Forensic Investigation?

By Mukesh Sharma and Paramjeet Singh

In this article, it is being reported what to do at the scene of crime (SOC) where suicide/homicide is in doubt, while visiting the spot. The points of suicide/homicide should be considered as a collective manner so that, results may be reported to investigate proper direction so the case might be registered as a suicide or homicide. As forensic investigation part based on the physical evidences, circumstantial evidence, suicide note, fan and its dust removal patterns etc. must be considered.


IR Photography for blood stains on dark clothing.

by Hayden Baldwin

Grayscaled IR Photo

One of the most difficult task is to view and document blood stains on dark clothing or dark skin. Using Infrared photography we are able to document the blood on dark clothing.

Read More


Forensic Science Simplified

The National Forensic Science Technology Center launched a new website this
month to help police officers, attorneys and the general public better
understand forensic science. Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance,
www.ForensicScienceSimplified.org provides a layman’s guide to forensic

This site is a great resource if you need to explain forensic science to someone- if say you have an attorney who needs to understand the evidence you've collected, or if you are doing a presentation for a school group.

The link above will take you to the guide, and you can read more about the project here: NFSTC launches ForensicScienceSimplified.org


On the Web-

By Daryl Clemens

LinkedIn continues to be the place to go for discussions about crime scene processing and forensic science. Hayden and I are both members, and there are a number of law enforcement related groups as well. ICSIA has a group there too, although it is not limited to our members only. If you are not part of our group, you should definitely join: ICSIA on LinkedIn

Among the great discussions of late has been this one on use of presumptive blood tests: Anyone using presumptive blood testing at the crime scene? The top answers seem to be Kastle Meyer, Hexagon OBTI and Hemastix.


Drawing Software

By Daryl Clemens

There was another good discussion on LinkedIn recently about what people were using to draw their crime scenes with. I thought it would be a good idea to go over some of the options so that you all would have an overview of what's currently available.

Read More

Mystaire Fuming Cabinet

Product Spotlight-

Mystaire CA-3000 Fuming Chamber
Develop latent prints by positioning your evidence inside the CA Chamber, adding cyanoacrylate to the heating element and pushing the start button. Within minutes, high-quality latent fingerprints are developed. Our exclusive, patented design ensures potentially hazardous cyanoacrylate fumes generated during the development process never escape the chamber and must pass through the filtration system a minimum of twenty times before the purge process is complete.
For more information call 1-877-328-3912 or visit http://goo.gl/96KV8
Puzzle Pieces
Above photo by Mykl Roventine

Mastering the Puzzle

By Dick Warrington

This article originally appeared in Forensic Magazine® October 2005, Reprinted with Permission.
Deciphering, observing, and untangling information and evidence at the crime scene provides the prosecutor what he needs to do his job – convict the guilty. In previous columns (Forensic Magazine June/July and August/September 2005), I talked about the importance of documenting, by means of a checklist, everything you see and everything that goes on at a crime scene. This is particularly true of a death scene.

iCrimeFighter LE

Cell Phones

iCrimeFighter LE

By Daryl Clemens

This month we are looking at an app designed for investigative use. iCrimeFighter LE is designed to allow you to create case files on your iPhone or Android device and add notes, photos and videos.

The home page has just under a dozen icons which allow you to:
  • Create a new incident- asks for ID number, type and location (it will grab location via GPS if it's able).
  • Add a narcotics test- take a photo of the test and add it to the file and see test instructions for Mistral brand tests.
  • Add a photo to a case file
  • Add a video to a case file
  • Add a recorded audio interview to a case file
  • Add field notes to a case file (on my Galaxy Note I can even handwrite notes with the pen).
  • Add a to-do list to a case file
  • FAQ
  • About (appears to be broken- it's supposed to take you to their website).
Once you have created a case, most of the above options are presented as a list under the case heading. You can also create categories so that you can file similar types of cases together- Burglaries, Homicides or what have you. There are no pre-made categories, so you are free to use whatever you like. There are also several options listed for backing up the data- to a server, dropbox, archive (I assume to a local file) or to share via e-mail. In the LE version these are all disabled. You will have to register with the company to take advantage of these features. Cost for the full version is not listed, but the LE version is free. This could be an easy solution for case notes for smaller agencies, or independent investigators. While the program seems a little slow at times, it does what it claims to do, and keeps everything in order for easy reference. I think Evernote is a better choice for personal users, but a registered version of this could be a good departmental solution.


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