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Collecting DNA Evidence at Property Crime Scenes


Summary on Evidence Collection

Priority of collection is determined by environmental conditions and the nature and potential evidentiary value of the evidence. Standard or reference samples are collected for comparison purposes from individuals who may have accessed the scene. Necessary collection equipment should be preassembled in a response kit. The kit should include personal protection equipment and materials for collecting, preserving and packaging evidence.

Biological evidence requires specific handling to guard against cross- contamination from the investigator or between biological specimens. Collection procedures are determined by the situation, location and the state and type of sample.

Labels list specifics from whom and where evidence was collected and may include biohazard information. The packaging process for biological evidence includes specific precautions to prevent contamination, loss and degradation. Evidence integrity and appropriate storage conditions are critical for evidence preservation. A complete chain of custody and a detailed report are essential components of case documentation.

Courtroom testimony is a critical aspect of the investigator's duties. Correct collection procedures and accurate documentation support the investigator's ability to provide effective testimony.

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Date Created: June 7, 2023