What is it?
- Body Fluids
- Soil and Plants
Note: Not all trace evidence contains DNA, such as semen, saliva and tears. The evidence, when secreted, picks up epithelial cells containing the DNA.
Why is it important?
- Trace evidence places the suspect at the scene or in contact with the victim.
- Trace evidence is very durable, lasting from months to years.
- “It clings to clothing, hides in shoe seams, nestles into hair, and settles into nooks and crannies (p. 320).”
Dr. Edmond Locard
- A pioneer in forensic science. He was known as the Sherlock Holmes of France.
- He’s known for the Locard’s Exchange Principle
o Whenever any two objects contact each other, a transfer of materials occurs.
- His principle lead to today’s crime scene investigation protocol.
o Securing the scene
o Controlling access to the scene to avoid contamination and removal of trace evidence.
- Going undercover allows the investigator (police, private or amateur) to infiltrate groups and areas under suspicion.
- People are more willing to open up and divulge information to someone similar to himself or herself, than someone possibly linked to the police.
- Information might be difficult to obtain without diving deeper into the suspects life.
- First and foremost, an investigator planning to do undercover surveillance or infiltrate a specific group must research the area and people to understand and plan their appearance and back story.
- Blend in by mirroring the suspects:
- On occasion an undercover investigator will be faced with performing illegal activities to gain access to groups or obtain information.
o If they don’t, they risk exposing themselves and getting hurt or killed.
What information have you researched for your novel and/or stories?