STAFF from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Scientific Services Unit have secured thousands of fingerprint and footprint identifications in the last year as part of the vital role they play in helping to solve crime.
Between January 2016 and November 2016, Scientific Services attended in excess of 23,700 scenes resulting in 3,315 forensic identifications.
Stuart Brennan, Head of Scientific Services said: “The team work tirelessly and use every technique available to them as part of their role in bringing offenders to justice. The expertise they offer is extensive and the unit provide critical forensic results across the full spectrum of crime types supporting colleagues in operational departments across the three forces.
“We have led the way in a number of developments during 2016. We were the first area nationally to gain accreditation within Forensic Imaging for CCTV capture and conversion. As a result we are now recognised as the police lead in this area.”
Fingermark images can now be captured directly at the scene and sent back to the fingerprint bureau electronically through mobile technology. This enables the fingerprint experts to carry out the identification work immediately upon receipt. This approach is innovative and has been proven to greatly assisted investigations with the quickest identification being achieved in just 55 minutes from the Scenes of Crime Officers (SOCOs) arriving at the scene.
Borderless tasking is now implemented through Cambridgeshire Force Control Room (FCR) where SOCOs are sent to the busiest towns irrespective of geographical boundaries, so a Hertfordshire SOCO could pick up a job in Bedfordshire or Cambridgeshire or vice versa. This ensures increased flexibility and an improved level of service to the public.
Stuart continued “We are the first police forces in the country to mobilise our SOCOs in this way. We have had extensive interest from other forces across the country, as we have already seen excellent results. SOCOs can look up incidents from their van in real time and go to incidents straight away.
“2016 has been an unforgettable year but we will push forward with other advances to make sure people know that Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire are not easy targets for criminal activity.”
Further information about the unit:
Scientific services provide crime scene to court forensic services to police customers across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire. Through effective communication, scene interpretation and evidence retrieval the unit provides evidence and intelligence for investigative officers in support of crime detection and prevention across the tri-force (Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire) area. The technical teams all work in partnership with scenes of crime officers (SOCOs) and investigators to ensure proportionate evidential opportunities are exploited in a timely fashion.