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Three Step Approach To Taking Photographs Of A Crime Scene

564 words - 3 pages

When photographing a crime scene the three-step approach is a follows:1. Take overview photographs to show the overall scene.2. Take mid-range photographs to show the exact location of evidence.3. Take close-up photographs to show the more intrinsic details of the evidence.It is best to use this method working from the outside of the scene to the smallest pieces of evidence. This will provide a more complete photographic image of the scene and all of the related evidence (Staggs, 1997).If you are photographing a traffic fatality after you have completed all of your preliminary work, such as getting equipment ready, walking through the crime scene, etc. you would start by taking some photographs of the overall wreck scene. ...view middle of the document...

Next you would start to take your mid-range photographs which would include taking photographs of each vehicle involved individually. Photographs would be taken from the view each driver had as they approached the accident. Try to show any view obstructions that could have played a role in causing the accident. If there were any witnesses you would photograph the view from where the witness observed the accident.Lastly you would take the close-up photographs. These would include the interior of the vehicle. Photographs in a traffic fatality should show anything in the interior of the vehicle that has evidence of body contact. Also if there are skid marks present take photographs in the direction of the mark to show the direction in which the vehicle was traveling. Take photographs from the side both without and with a scale to show the length of the marks. Next photograph the patch of the tire where the contact was made and the top of the skid mark to show the tire tread type Staggs, 1997).There is not set number of photographs that have to be taken, but you need to be sure that if this case goes to court ten months from now you will be able to show what was seen at that accident site and be able to recall as much detail as possible. Documentation is a very big part of photographing a crime scene. Notes need to be very thorough and as neat as possible. If you appear to be very certain of yourself when you are explaining the photographs to jury, you will have a better chance of them believing you.ReferencesStaggs, Steven, Crime Scene and Evidence Photographer's Guide, Staggs Publishing, Wildomar, CA, 1997.

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