Law enforcement agencies brush up on forensics skills -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Law enforcement agencies brush up on forensics skills

By Jade Bulecza - bio | email

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - Georgia law enforcement agencies are brushing up on their forensics skills at an annual conference.

Some of their continuing education includes hands-on training in crime scene processing. 

A pizza party mock crime scene was set up today at the 39th annual Georgia Division of the International Association for Identification.

"This gives them the opportunity to try and learn how to triangulate and find the measurements," says Brenda Hutson, Dekalb County Police retiree and course instructor.

With this training, investigators can reconstruct the crime scene.

Investigators treat this like a real crime scene. They're measuring and collecting evidence.

Hutson says new law enforcement officers and veterans in the forensics field benefit from this crime technician course.

"We work from the very first officer coming into a crime scene that finds it to the very one that ends it up and says you're guilty you're going to jail," said Hutson. "We work hand in hand with each other."

Some 50 officers are also taking courses on wiretapping, meth labs, and latent printing.

"I'm taking an 8-hour credit course as a preparation for the latent print examination certification," said Det. Ray McGraw of Valdosta Police.

Once Detective McGraw is certified he'll join the nearly 840 certified latent print examiners in the world.  Latent printing includes using fingerprint powders to create impressions.

"We have instructors from the federal government from the Georgia Bureau of Investigations and different agencies," said Det. McGraw.

Fifteen vendors are at the IAI conference supplying law enforcement agencies with crime scene equipment and new technology.

"The way crimes are investigated are changing daily," said Det. McGraw.

He says these conferences allow Georgia law enforcement agencies to train together and learn from one another.

The conference at the Valdosta Hilton Garden Inn ends Thursday.

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