News from the Field

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Evidence-collection course helps Iraqi Police close cases

Soldiers from the 203rd Military Police Battalion, along with law-enforcement professionals Donnie Weller and David Diaz, held a two-week evidence-collection course in April at the Provincial Joint Coordination Center in Basra, Iraq, designed to implement standardized evidence-collection procedures for the Iraqi Police (IP).
 
The training culminated with a final evaluation of a crime-scene investigation held at the Iraqi Police Training Center on Contingency Operating Base Basra.
 
The foundation for this training was laid in November, when the Basra Provincial Reconstruction Team and 17th Fires Brigade Rule of Law team brought local judges and police together for the first time in a conference at the Basra Palace of Justice. The conference opened the lines of communication between the two teams.
 
During the conference, Chief Judge Khaz’al Da’bol Qasim said only by working together would the judges and the police be able to assess the system and implement a strategy.
 
Earlier this year, the two sides met with the intention of learning what each needed to ensure a better judiciary process. With the help of law-enforcement professional Edgar Lacy, assigned to the 17th FiB ROL team, the judges and police were able to solidify a standard for admissible evidence.
 
“Everything depends on collecting the right evidence at the crime scenes,” said Lacy.
 
Based off the feedback from the second meeting between the IP and judges, the 203rd MPs began developing a curriculum.
“Our goal was to not only teach the IPs standardized evidence-collection procedures, but to make sure they implemented those techniques in their routine,” said Sgt. Brandon Teague, a 203rd MP Bn. team leader.
 
The two-week course focused on tagging and documenting evidence, quarantining a crime scene, collecting evidence and collecting witness statements.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED:
"News from the Field"
May-June 2010 (Volume 8, Number 3)
Evidence Technology Magazine
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