Homicide Investigators Hold 24th Annual Symposium

The International Homicide Investigators Association (IHIA) was formed more than 25 years ago to provide active support to law enforcement death professionals through leadership, training, and networking. Each year the association holds a week long symposium in support of its mission. The IHIA recently held its 24th Annual IHIA Symposium at The Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Florida. In attendance were over 350 law enforcement, coroners/medical examiners, and forensics professionals from throughout the U.S. along with representatives from nine foreign countries.

Serving as co-hosts for this year's symposium were the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Critical Response Group (CIRG), the Criminal Investigation Division (CID), and the FBI's Tampa Field Office, the Orange County Sheriff's Office, the Orlando Police Department, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Each of these agencies and their representatives were invaluable in providing time, resources, and personal to ensure that the symposium met the outstanding training expectations that attendees have come to expect.

This symposium included presentations from investigators, prosecutors, forensic science professionals in biological and physical sciences and digital media, and professionals in the area of psychology and anthropology. Presentations were also given on the Pulse Night Club Shooting, the 2015 Paris Terrorist Attack, the investigation, interview, & prosecution of serial killer Robert Spangler, major homicide techniques by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and a Australia cold case initiative.

Also included in this years' symposium were break-out sessions during the week on Cold Case Investigations and Executive Management for Law Enforcement.

On January 9, 2017 Orlando Police Lieutenant Debra Clayton was shot and killed while attempting to apprehend a murder suspect. While responding to her assistance, Orange County Deputy First Class Norm Lewis was killed in a vehicular accident. In honor of Lieutenant Debra Clayton and Deputy Norm Lewis the IHIA held a fundraiser to raise support for the families of these two fallen officers.

On the night of Thursday, June 29, 2017 a benefit raffle was held at the Fat Fish Blue and Improv Comedy Club at Pointe Orlando. In attendance were the families of both officers. During this special evening 100% of the proceeds raised were presented to the families.

Membership in the IHIA provides access to training materials, forums, and contacts throughout the world. Efforts are already underway by the IHIA Executive Board on next years' symposium, which will be held July29-August 3, 2018 at the Golden Nugget Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. Information on next years' symposium in Las Vegas can be obtained on the IHIA website

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