There are certain personnel duties and responsibilities which are necessary in almost any major search operation. Those enumerated in these guidelines concentrate on the ones which are typically crucial to ensure that search efforts are conducted in an organized and methodical fashion. It is important to note it may not be feasible to have one person assigned to each duty. It is relatively common for one person to accomplish two or more duties.
For all positions, interest and attitude of personnel are paramount concerns. Training and experience will only be used to best potential when team members possess a positive attitude. This human side of evidence response teams is significant due to the long hours and attention to detail often required of personnel.
The major assignments, as well as corresponding general duties and responsibilities, are set forth as follows:
It is sometimes necessary to bring in expertise from an outside agency. The field of forensic science is so broad today that no agency will have every form of specialty service available from among its ranks. Typically, specialists are brought in from industry, the academic community, private scientific laboratories, and similar concerns.
When dealing with outside specialists some pertinent aspects to consider are:
Specialists should be identified before they are needed in an actual case. A current list should be maintained, if possible. The agency should meet with these individuals to determine the best manner to jointly conduct search planning, operations, and follow-up activity.
The following list provides examples of specialty assistance to be considered (it is not meant to be completely inclusive):
This information was adapted from the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training's workbook for the "Forensic Technology for Law Enforcement" Telecourse presented on May 13, 1993. Please see the acknowledgments.