The International Crime Scene Investigators Association was created to assist law enforcement personnel who are involved in the processing of crime scenes. The discipline of crime scene processing (see definition below) is such a unique field in forensic science and law enforcement that this discipline needed its own organization. Crime scene processing is a multidisciplinary function. We, as crime scene processors, must have a working knowledge of all the disciplines in forensic science and apply that knowledge to the documentation of the crime scene, identifying the fingerprint evidence, and the physical and testimonial evidence left at the crime scene.
Definition of “crime scene processing” as it relates to the ICSIA
Crime scene processing is the actual act of processing the crime scene in the field. The processing refers to the entire task of examining, photographing, sketching, and using field techniques to identify, evaluate, document, process and collect physical, testimonial and fingerprint evidence. This person is a generalist who does it all but may be assisted by others.
Crime Scene Investigators have rarely had the opportunity to directly discuss techniques, tips or share other pertinent information with other crime scene personnel throughout the world. The ICSIA hopes to make that possible! This association is strictly INTERNET based. All communications will be addressed by e-mail, message board, discussion mail list and information posted on the ICSIA web site. The philosophy of the Association is to keep the communications open and simple. The web site will be structured around this philosophy.
Definition of “Crime Scene Investigator”
For the purpose of this application the term “Crime Scene Investigator” refers to personnel who spend a whole or part of their job in processing crime scenes. This includes the “Evidence Technician”, “Criminalistics Officer”, “Crime Scene Technician”, “Scenes of Crimes Officers”, “Crime Scene Examiner” and the “Forensic Investigator” or to any other name associated with a person who processes the crime scene for physical and testimonial evidence. This does not include arson investigators, traffic accident reconstructionist, crash investigators, or the Forensic Scientist who occasionally comes to a crime scene.
Crime Scene Investigator
“A CSI is a trained individual who examines, evaluates, documents, processes and collects
evidence at crime scenes for forensic analysis.” Only limited by their knowledge and ability.
Key words defined:
Trained: by a reputable agency /institution
Examined: process crime scene for the various evidence to be found therein
Evaluate: determine the best methods to capture/recover evidence
Document: Note taking, comprehensive report, photography, video, and sketch
Processes: Uses the skills required to “read” the scene, recover latent, patent and plastic evidence by using various techniques.
Collects: Recover, package, seal, label, while maintaining integrity of the evidence
Evidence: Physical and testimonial
Forensic analysis: Labs, experts and court where processes, observations, documentation and results will be weighted in the prosecution of a case.
Code of Conduct
Members of ICSIA are governed by the Memorandum and Articles of the Association: and in accordance with Article 5 of the Associations Articles of association, are bound by this Code of Professional Conduct.
In the event of a member being found to be in breach of this code, the executive has power, in its absolute discretion, to expel or suspend that member from membership, or from any particular grade of membership, or to apply such other lesser sanction as may be appropriate. In exercising such power and such discretion, the executive may only act upon a recommendation from the Professional Standards Committee.
The Clauses given below indicate the general standard of conduct to which members must adhere when carrying out their professional duties:
Any confidential information acquired by a member in the course of his/her professional duties shall not be divulged to any third party.
Conduct themselves so as to uphold the reputation of the Association and with it the spirit and dignity of their profession.
Strive continually to uphold the professional standard of their work and to improve the standard of practice in the profession as a whole.
Deal fairly, honestly and helpfully with their clients, employer, employees, suppliers and fellow members and when required to give professional opinion shall do so conscientiously and without malice.
A member shall exercise all reasonable skill, care and diligence in the discharge of their duties and, in so far as any of their duties are discretionary, shall act fairly and in good faith.
A member shall ensure that advertisements and other public announcements with which their name, or the name under which they practice is associated, are not such as would bring the Association into disrepute.
A member shall at all times and in all respects conduct their professional and business operations within the law.
A member shall abide by, and assist the Association within the terms of its conciliation service whether such service be requested by them or their client.
A member shall co-operate fully with any investigations into an alleged breach of this Code.
A member knowingly condoning a breach of this Code by one of their fellow principals or employees shall be responsible as if they themselves had committed such breach.
- To encourage the exchange of information useful in crime scene related matters.
- To improve on the level of expertise in the field by providing timely answers through membership participation.
- To provide members with articles on crime scene related matters that will improve their skills.
- To have a vehicle for the instant exchange of information, problems and solutions based on membership feedback.
- To offer the membership reasonable training in crime scene processing by member instructors through on-line training or training in the field by qualified instructors.
- To promote communication and cooperation between agencies, the forensic community and members.
- To offer the undergraduate or graduate student access to crime scene field personnel to promote the education, training and communication skills of the student.
- To encourage product research and development amongst the forensic community and vendors of crime scene equipment.