The Forensic and Technical Services Bureau of the Prosecutor’s Office consists of detectives and support staff. The unit is also supervised by the Director of Major Crimes. an Assistant Prosecutor who provides legal direction for the unit.
Generally speaking, the Forensic and Technical Services Bureau is responsible for processing crime scenes or potential crime scenes. Detectives will photograph and/or videotape the scene and are also responsible for retrieving any evidence relevant to the investigation. This evidence can include the following depending upon the nature of the investigation:
- Biological evidence (i.e. blood, hair, saliva, semen, tissue, bone, urine & other bodily fluids);
- Trace evidence (i.e. fibers, soil, clothing particles, glass particles);
- Chemical evidence (i.e. liquids, hazardous waste);
- Impression evidence (i.e. fingerprints, palm prints, handwriting, shoe prints, tool marks);
- Firearms evidence (i.e. ammunition, casings, residue, projectiles, handguns, shotguns);
- Other weapons evidence (i.e. knives, blunt objects, ropes); and
- Controlled dangerous substances and paraphernalia.
Forensic detectives are specially trained in evidence collection and storage. These detectives also have the following responsibilities:
- Obtaining physical exemplars from defendants after consent or a court order;
- Preparation of scene diagrams or arranging for land surveys to be conducted;
- All aspects of trial preparation including enlargement of charts and photos;
- Personally attend autopsies in homicide cases;
- Coordinate DNA testing.
Detectives in the Forensic and Technical Services Bureau work closely with other investigative units in the Prosecutor’s Office as well as state and local police departments.