Investigation Through Arrest Phases
The Prosecution Phase - Pre-Trial
The pre-trial phase consists of compliance with discovery obligations, witness preparation and pre-trial motion practices. Motions to quash arrest records and suppress evidence are typical during this phase. During pre-trial, the prosecutor will formulate a strategy for prosecuting the case, begin to assess possible defenses and strategize methods to negate those defenses.
Prosecutors must understand the time and resource limitations of investigative and laboratory personnel. Conversely, investigative and laboratory personnel should be receptive to the prosecutor's needs and understand the priorities apparent during the prosecution phase.
The burden of proving a case beyond a reasonable doubt is placed solely on the prosecutor. Investigative work does not stop with the arrest of a suspect. As stated earlier, the investigation typically continues throughout the criminal justice process.
A case may plea on the eve of trial with investigators and laboratory personnel still engaged. Prosecutors must remember that these parties have an interest in any outcome from the prosecution, as it may directly affect their workloads or case priorities. Communication with investigators and the laboratory should continue through the end of the trial. Often, personnel from both parties have invested time and effort on the case, and alerting these individuals of the outcome avoids wasting valuable resources, builds trust between the parties and is generally good for morale.
Additional Online Courses
- What Every First Responding Officer Should Know About DNA Evidence
- Collecting DNA Evidence at Property Crime Scenes
- DNA – A Prosecutor’s Practice Notebook
- Crime Scene and DNA Basics
- Laboratory Safety Programs
- DNA Amplification
- Population Genetics and Statistics
- Non-STR DNA Markers: SNPs, Y-STRs, LCN and mtDNA
- Firearms Examiner Training
- Forensic DNA Education for Law Enforcement Decisionmakers
- What Every Investigator and Evidence Technician Should Know About DNA Evidence
- Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court
- Law 101: Legal Guide for the Forensic Expert
- Laboratory Orientation and Testing of Body Fluids and Tissues
- DNA Extraction and Quantitation
- STR Data Analysis and Interpretation
- Communication Skills, Report Writing, and Courtroom Testimony
- Español for Law Enforcement
- Amplified DNA Product Separation for Forensic Analysts