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Crime Scene Investigation – It’s All in the Details

Updated: Sep 22, 2023

While processing a crime scene, every detail is documented. Usually, this documentation is done in notes, photographs, sketches, and even videos, and includes not only the crime scene but also the surrounding area.

To capture as much information as possible, there is usually a designated note-taker that keeps an accurate account of every event in and around the crime scene. The idea here is to get an accurate description of each piece of evidence in an unaltered state. But how much detail can crime scene investigators capture through manual documentation?

While pictures and diagrams go a long way, there is now an opportunity today to expand how much detail we can have.

Technology provides us that opportunity through 3D scanning. When you do sketching and diagramming, you spend lots of manhour times and if you’re still in the manual mode of measuring, the process can be very time-consuming. 3D scanning, on the other hand, can help investigators clarify details gotten from the crime scene.

Adding 3D scanning to your current procedures can help you quickly compile crime scene evidence and move on to better detail.

The 3D scanning technology can also help investigators when it comes to large crime scenes. So, rather than throw ten crime scene investigators unto a large crime scene, 3D scanning and documentation can help you get down to millimeter accuracy.

Evidence collected with 3D scanners can be printed in digital formats for future use. They can also be used for 360-degree photography to enhance the evidence for visibility, not just for investigators, but also later down the road for professionals like lawyers who can later visit these details to understand what really happened. The idea here is to leverage technology to get more detailed crime scene information, instead of overwhelming investigators with labor-intensive workloads.

Forensic Collection of Evidence: How 3D Scanning Helps

3D scanners collect a massive number of closely-spaced details and produce a point cloud. By setting the scanner in multiple locations around a crime scene, investigators can capture several point clouds of 3D points to develop a snapshot of the location. Even hair-splitting features like tire marks and shell casings can be captured with 3D scanning and point cloud.

Upon completion of the on-scene work, data from the 3D scanner is sent to office computers for processing and archival purposes. All scans gotten from the scene are combined merged into a single point cloud, allowing investigators to have a complete view of the scene at any time.

By using 3D scanning for crime scene data collection, reconstruction and analysis, the work of officers in the field become a lot simpler. What’s more, investigators will be better able to capture every detail – no matter how minute – and work faster with better results in the end.

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