CRIME SCENE investigation
Duties & Responsibilities
The Criminal Investigation Division (C.I.D.) is the investigative arm of the police department, consisting of major case investigations which includes: Persons, Property, Juvenile, Auto Theft, Narcotics, the Property and Evidence Unit. The Division is led by one lieutenant and two sergeants.
The primary function of the Criminal Investigation Division is to review and investigate reports of felony and misdemeanor criminal acts, identify suspects, both adult and juvenile, and prepare cases for prosecution with the U.S., District, County, and City Attorneys’ offices. Investigative work is re-active, from reports with the identification, arrest and prosecution of suspects, and also pro-active, through the prevention of criminal acts in their identification of suspects.
C.I.D. also provides support to victims of crimes during the course of an investigation. Crime victims and the community both benefit from the prosecution and punishment of criminals. Many investigations can be completed in a matter of weeks, whereas other investigations may take years before they are solved. Every attempt is made to prioritize
their work so that cases involving injured persons, threats to personal safety, and significant property loss receive the most immediate attention. C.I.D. has at least one detective designated as being “on call” at all times, but all detectives may be called in to work major crime scenes when needed.
The Pharr Police Department employs civilian support personnel, assigned to the Crime Scene Section, to assist in the investigation and processing of crime scenes and various types of evidence. Crime Scene personnel will not respond to any calls in progress. The Crime Scene Section consists of two different support positions and is supervised by one civilian supervisor who falls under the CID lieutenant.
Property/Evidence Technician – Property and evidence technicians are responsible for the care, custody and control of all property and evidence recovered and generated during the investigation of a crime. Property and evidence technicians receive training and certification from T.A.P.E.I.T. (Texas Association of Property and Evidence Inventory Technicians), networking with other law enforcement agencies across the state. The Property and Evidence technicians receive property and evidence submitted to the Pharr Police Department by properly inventorying, packaging, sealing and storing items in such a manner as to preserve the evidence until requested for analysis, courtroom proceedings or until the statute of limitations expires. Property and evidence technicians also work to routinely purge the storage areas of property no longer deemed evidentiary. Following procedures set forth in the Texas Criminal Code of Procedure, items are purged through authorized release, public auction, department use or destruction.
Crime Scene Technician – who respond to crimes against persons and property scenes (homicide, robberies, sexual assaults, assaults, fatality collisions, burglaries, criminal mischief etc.) Crime Scene Technicians also assist with officer involved incidents (such as shootings, fleet accidents, etc.) and Internal Affairs investigations, as requested. Crime Scene personnel must work shift work – including weekends and holidays and be on-call. Crime Scene personnel are issued all equipment (except footwear), wear distinctive uniforms. They must successfully complete an extensive internal training program and attend outside training courses as required. Crime Scene personnel are expected to have excellent written and oral communication skills. They communicate directly with management staff, the public at large, and law enforcement and medical personnel, and with the District Attorney’s Office, daily. They must be able to clearly testify as an expert witness in all courts of law.