For Law Enforcement Officers:
Completing a comprehensive, thorough investigation of gunshot wound crimes is of the utmost importance. This groundbreaking training is imperative in developing an advanced department of highly-trained investigators.
Each day, law enforcement officers play a key role in preserving and managing evidence at the scene of a crime. Often times, the difference between justice and injustice is a trained forensic expert. In untrained hands, evidence can unfortunately be inadvertently destroyed or made otherwise obsolete. In this program, members of law enforcement will be able to understand the importance of applying clinical forensic medicine to the gunshot wound cases, will be able to determine and evaluate projectile trajectory, and identify and properly collect forensic evidence associated with gunshot wounds.
Firearm residue tests, the Modified Griess Test and Sodium Rhodizonate tests will be conducted and studied, and participants will understand how microscopic impressions are imparted on the surface of a projectile, which is crucial to investigating gunshot wounds. Upon completion of the program, participants will be prepared to address the forensic evaluation and discuss the unique forensic issues of gunshot wounds in living victim, officer-involved shootings. Additionally, they will learn to summarize their investigation in anticipation of a presentation to a grand jury.
This course is will teach the critical skills and knowledge necessary for the application of working alongside a medical trauma team, to best preserve the judicial integrity of that evidence.
For Medical Professionals:
When treating gunshot wounds without consideration of their forensic significance, medical professionals may misinterpret wounds, fail to recognize victims of abuse of domestic violence, and inadequately describe the physical appearance of the wounds.
During the provision of patient care, evidence that can be of critical significance to criminal or civil proceedings can be lost, discarded, or inadvertently washed away. Medical Professionals are in the ideal position to evaluate and document the state of a gunshot wound because they see and examine wounds and evidence before it is disturbed, distorted or destroyed by surgical intervention.
In a criminal case, a treating medical professional may be requested to render “factual” testimony, “expert” testimony, or both. Expert forensic testimony rendered without an appropriate forensic exam or adequate forensic training may mislead the criminal justice system, thus resulting in grievous injustice for victims or accused suspects.
This course is designed to prepare the medical professional to expertly perform the forensic evaluation of gunshot wounds and address the forensic needs of their patients.