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Evidence Collection in Sex Related Crimes Essay

Crime scenes present many possibilities and evidence that may aid investigators in the apprehension and possibly conviction of a known or unknown offender. While this evidence are present at a scene of a crime, it requires specialized training on the part of law enforcement officials to effectively, efficiently and accurately, collect, record and preserve these evidence.

Chain of command is especially vital at each stage of the evidence collection, as evidence can easily be lost and even tampered with. Sex crimes are especially sensitive, as trained professionals have to exercise empathy to what or who may be perceived as the main evidence; the victim. The victim may hold the key to a lot of information that will help investigators capture the perpetrator. Keyword: sex crimes, crime scene, evidence, collection, touch DNA

The Importance of Evidence Collection in Sexually Related Crimes

An investigation into any crime, takes place on the presumption that a crime has occurred. It is during the investigation that the actual determination of whether a crime did indeed occur is arrived at. Once it has been determined that an actual crime has occurred, then the investigation continues. The investigation of different crimes may take on a different approach, but the ultimate goal for every crime is to apprehend and prevent future crimes. The same can be said of sex crimes.

Sex crimes include more than just rape. While investigating sexual assault crimes involve the careful approach of the first responder, other parties involved with the investigation of a sex crime, must have specialized training to handle crimes of this nature. Rape is one facet of a sexual assault, and while the act itself is usually an unwanted one on the part of the victim, it does not make less the other sexual assaults that can be imposed on an individual. Sex crime by definition is a crime involving sexual assault, or one that is sexually motivated. In order for sex to be considered a crime, the offender must knowingly cause the other person to engage in an unwanted sex act.

It involves acts such as rape, prostitution, child pornography, sexual intercourse with a minor, and forcibly sodomy, sex crime also covers incest. Sex crimes are often times sensitive in nature at the onset of being called to the scene of the crime. It would aid investigators tremendously if the victim as well as the offender are both present, however in some instances, this may not be the case. One of the most important evidence that can be collected at the scene of the crime is the statement or testimony of the victim themselves.

References

Enos, W. F., Conrath, T. B., & Byer, J. C. (1986). Forensic Evaluation of the Sexually Abuse Child. Pediatrics, 78(3), 385. Feldberg, G. (1997). Defining the Facts of Rape: The Uses of Medical Evidence in Sexual Assault Trials. Canadian Journal of Women & The Law, 9(1), 89-114 Garcia, S., & Henderson, M. (2010). Options for Reporting Sexual Violence Developments Over the Past Decade.

FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, 79(5), 1-8. Marshall University Women’s Center. (n.d). Types of Sexual Assault. Retrieved from http://www.marshall.edu/wpmu/wcenter/sexual-assault/types-of-sexual-assault/ Shelton, D. E. (2010). Criminal adjudication: The challenges of forensic science evidence in the early 21st century. (Order No. 3415644, University of Nevada, Reno). ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, , 267-n/a. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/734315512?accountid=8289. (734315512).


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