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All too often, the weakest link in the chain of criminal justice is the crime scene investigation. Improper collection of evidence blocks the finding of truth. Now in its second edition, Practical Crime Scene Processing and Investigation presents practical, proven methods to be used at any crime scene to ensure that evidence is admissible and persuasive.

Accompanied by more than 300 color photographs, topics discussed include:

Understanding the nature of physical evidence, including fingerprint, biological, trace, hair and fiber, and other forms of evidence Actions of the responding officer, from documenting and securing the initial information to providing emergency care Assessing the scene, including search considerations and dealing with chemical and bioterror hazards Crime scene photography, sketching, mapping, and notes and reports Light technology and preserving fingerprint and impression evidence Shooting scene documentation and reconstruction Bloodstain pattern analysis and the body as a crime scene Special scene considerations, including fire, buried bodies, and entomological evidence The role of crime scene analysis and reconstruction, with step-by-step procedures

Two appendices provide additional information on crime scene equipment and risk management, and each chapter is enhanced by a succinct summary, suggested readings, and a series of questions to test assimilation of the material. Using this book in your investigations will help you find out what happened and who is responsible.

Every action performed by a crime scene investigator has an underlying purpose: to both recover evidence and capture scene context. It is imperative that crime scene investigators must understand their mandate—not only as an essential function of their job but because they have the immense responsibility and duty to do so.

Practice Crime Scene Processing and Investigation, Third Edition

provides the essential tools for what crime scene investigators need to know, what they need to do, and how to do it. As professionals, any investigator’s master is the truth and only the truth. Professional ethics demands an absolute adherence to this mandate. When investigators can effectively seek, collect, and preserve information and evidence from the crime scene to the justice system—doing so without any agenda beyond seeking the truth— not only are they carrying out the essential function and duty of their job, it also increases the likelihood that the ultimate goal of true justice will be served.

Richly illustrated—with more than 415 figures, including over 300 color photographs—the Third Edition of this best-seller thoroughly addresses the role of the crime scene investigator in the context of:

Understanding the nature of physical evidence, including fingerprint, biological, trace, hair and fiber, impression, and other forms of evidence

Assessing the scene, including search considerations and dealing with chemical and bioterror hazards

Crime scene photography; scene sketching, mapping, and documentation; and the role of crime scene analysis and reconstruction

Bloodstain pattern analysis and discussion of the body as a crime scene

Special scene considerations, including fire, buried bodies, and entomological evidence

Coverage details the importance of maintaining objectivity, emphasizing that every action the crime scene investigator performs has an underlying purpose: to both recover evidence and capture scene context.

Key features:

Outlines the responsibilities of the responding officer, from documenting and securing the initial information to providing emergency care

Includes three new chapters on light technology and crime scene processing techniques, recovering fingerprints, and castings

Addresses emerging technology and new techniques in 3-D Laser scanning procedures in capturing a scene

Provides a list of review questions at the end of each chapter

Practice Crime Scene Processing and Investigation, Third Edition

includes practical, proven methods to be used at any crime scene to ensure that evidence is preserved, admissible in court, and persuasive.

Course ancillaries including PowerPoint® lecture slides and a Test Bank are available with qualified course adoption.

Objective establishment of the truth is the goal of any good crime scene investigator. This demands a consideration of all evidence available using proven scientific methodologies to establish objective snapshots of the crime. The majority of forensic disciplines shed light on the “who” of a crime, bloodstain pattern analysis is one of the most important disciplines to address “what” happened. Understanding the discipline, its underlying scientific basis, and how best to apply this knowledge is crucial in the investigator’s quest for the truth.

Internationally known experts in crime scene analysis, Tom Bevel and Ross M. Gardner explore bloodstain pattern analysis in depth, explaining what it is, how it is used, and the practical methodologies employed to achieve defensible results.

Bloodstain Pattern Analysis with an Introduction to Crime Scene Reconstruction, Third Edition:

Presents a specific and detailed taxonomy of bloodstain pattern characteristics Offers a full-color fold-out Decision Map to guide analysts through the classification process Uses full-color photos and diagrams to illustrate concepts Describes the theory, principles, and methodology for crime scene reconstruction Details proven, applicable scientific methodologies Emphasizes observable and reproducible results to mitigate accusations of subjectivity in evidence and testimony Provides more than 60% new or significantly revised information


Offering practical advice and tips for novices and experienced professionals, this book employs clear, lucid, and reasoned scientific arguments to provide the tools to guide and focus any investigative effort.


Captain Tom Bevel is a 27-year veteran of the Oklahoma City Police Department, retiring in 1996 as Commander of the Homicide, Robbery, Missing Persons, and Unsolved Homicide units. He is held in high esteem as a qualified expert in crime scene reconstruction and bloodstain pattern analysis in state, federal, and foreign courts. His knowledge and expertise as a crime scene consultant has been sought after in 45 US states and 11 foreign countries. He owns a forensic education and consulting company in his home state of Oklahoma.


Ross M. Gardner retired as a Command Sergeant Major and Special Agent in 1999 after serving a total of 24 years in US Army law enforcement. Certified by the International Association for Identification as a Senior Crime Analyst for the past 16 years, Gardner is an active instructor and consultant throughout the United States in crime scene analysis, bloodstain pattern analysis, and crime scene investigation.

Crime scene reconstruction (CSR) is today’s hot topic. The immense proliferation of television, print, and electronic media directed at this area has generated significant public interest, albeit occasionally encouraging inaccurate perceptions. Practical Crime Scene Analysis and Reconstruction bridges the gap between perception and reality, helping readers understand the nature of the scientific method and teaching the proper application of its components.

A proven methodology

The book begins by recounting the history of crime scene analysis and exploring fundamental principles. Then the authors introduce their proven methodology, known as Event Analysis. This technique defines specific actions, discusses the order of those actions, and offers significant insight into determining what did or did not happen in the course of the incident under investigation. Using case studies and more than 200 color photos, the book demonstrates this method and how it can be used to explain clues that would otherwise be puzzling or ambiguous.

Practical advice from the crime scene to the courtroom

The authors show how to resolve significant questions that arise in the course of CSR through the use of an event analysis worksheet. The book also discusses crime scene protocol, bloodstain pattern analysis, gunshot investigation, and forensic pathology and the human body. The final chapters provide instruction on writing crime scene reports, discuss ethical issues, and give advice on courtroom presentation.

Includes color photos demonstrating the science of CSR on:

Superposition Timing and sequence Bloodstain analysis Ballistics Wound patterns

Those tasked with investigating crime scenes come from a variety of backgrounds and varying levels of experience. Crime Scene Investigation Procedural Guide gives the novice investigator the procedures for almost any crime scene imaginable while providing the seasoned pro a ready reference for crimes occurring even under the most unusual of circumstances. Designed as a stand-alone text or as a companion to Ross Gardner’s Practical Crime Scene Investigation, the book details the precise steps that need to be taken when processing and analyzing a crime scene.

Using a bulleted format for quick, easy access, the authors provide hands-on, concise instruction in a style friendly to a range of professionals. Topics discussed in this practical manual include:

Preparation for response, initial response, scene management, and scene evaluation/analysis

Scene photography, videography, sketching, and search and processing procedures

Steps to be taken prior to releasing the scene

Response, documentation, processing, and collection of evidence for specific crimes against persons and property

Evaluation, processing, collection, and preservation of all items of evidence encountered at the scene, including friction ridge evidence, two- and three-dimensional impression evidence, and trace and biological evidence

Bloodstain pattern documentation and shooting incident documentation

Appendices include direction on working with potential blood-borne pathogens and worksheets for documenting and evaluating the scene and processing various types of evidence. A supplemental CD is included with downloadable forms for crime scene investigations. Adherence to the instructions provided in this guide will help ensure investigators that vital evidence is properly documented and preserved.

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