Lesley Hammer, CSCSA, CFWE, D-ABC
Footwear & Tire Track Evidence:
Effective Crime Scene Recovery
Footwear and tire track evidence is underutilized and often overlooked; yet it should be present at every crime scene. Effective recovery of footwear and tire track evidence requires proper application of detection, photography, note taking, chemical development and collection techniques. There are increased expectations to be thorough, transparent, and to use standard techniques as a result of both the post NAS Report and TV CSI exposed juries. This course will enable participants to be both competent and confident collecting footwear and tire track evidence at a crime scene, evaluating the value to an investigation and presenting the evidence in court.
The emphasis of this course is on the practice of a wide variety of techniques to achieve proficiency recovering footwear and tire track evidence, and the application of techniques and skills to crime scene circumstances. To evaluate impressions at the crime scene, knowledge of manufacturing characteristics and characteristics that result from the wearing of shoes and tires will be discussed. Manufacturing and design information can provide important investigative intelligence, this along with the use and availability of databases and other resources will be discussed. The course will cover the standards that apply to this evidence, the written report contents and manner of testimony required to accurately and clearly convey this evidence.
This course is conducted primarily through hands on experience. Participants will practice photography including lighting techniques and the proper sequence of photographs needed to compose and document track evidence. Techniques and materials for lifting, casting and chemically enhancing impressions will be practiced, with emphasis on determination of which technique to use and on the notes and photographs needed to document both the scene context and the impression for comparison.
Both two- and three-dimensional track evidence, in a variety of substrates will be practiced and discussed in this course. Participants will experience each set of skills, and then practice application of techniques to crime scene scenarios, allowing for direct application to field work upon completion of the course.