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Historical Origins of Criminal Investigation. Chapter 1. Overview. The Evolution of the Detective Development of Criminalistics Legal Influences on the Development of Criminal Investigation Review Questions Opportunity for Student Questions. Learning Objectives.

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Historical origins of criminal investigation

Historical Origins of Criminal Investigation

Chapter 1



  • The Evolution of the Detective

  • Development of Criminalistics

  • Legal Influences on the Development of Criminal Investigation

  • Review Questions

  • Opportunity for Student Questions

Learning objectives

Learning Objectives

  • Understand historical evolution

  • Appreciate the relationship of European and American origins of criminal investigation

  • Comprehend the concept of thief-catching

  • Account for similarities and differences of early American investigators and European counterparts

  • Familiarize with American investigators who were instrumental to the development of present-day investigation

  • Comprehend the development of forensic science

  • List prominent European and American criminalists

  • Understand the importance of legal influences on the development of criminal investigation

The evolution of the detective european origins

The Evolution of the Detective: European Origins

  • Law enforcement efforts evolved over centuries

    • Frank-pledge system (middle ages)

    • Tithings ̶ subgroups of ten families

    • Watches ̶ government and merchant-financed patrols (through the seventeenth century)

    • Parliamentary Reward System (abolished in 1818)

    • Thief-taking (early 1700s)

The evolution of the detective european origins develop p6

The Evolution of the Detective: European Origins Develop p6

  • The English Detective: The Bow Street Runners (1748)

  • Sir Robert Peel

    • Known as the father of modern policing

    • Instrumental in the creation of the Metropolitan Police Act which created the London Metropolitan Police (Scotland Yard) in 1829

  • In 1877, Scotland Yard created the Criminal Investigation Department

Peel s principles of police

Peel’s Principles of Police

  • The Police must be stable, efficient and organized along military lines.

  • The Police must be under government control.

  • The absence of crime will best prove the efficiency of Police.

  • The distribution of crime news is essential.

Peel s principles cont d

Peel’s Principles Cont’d.

  • The deployment of Police strength by time and area is essential.

  • No quality is more indispensable to Police than a perfect command of temper: a quiet, determined manner has more effect than violent action.

  • Good appearance commands respect.

Peel s principles cont d1

Peel’s Principles Cont’d.

  • The securing of training of proper persons is at the root of efficiency.

  • Public security demands that every officer be given a number.

  • Police Headquarters should be centrally located and be easily accessible to the people.

Peel s principles cont d2

Peel’s Principles Cont’d.

  • Policemen should be hired on a probationary basis.

  • Police records are necessary to the correct distribution of Police strength.

The evolution of the detective u s origins p8

The Evolution of the Detective: U.S. Origins p8

  • Growth in the U.S. parallels Europe

    • Volunteer night watches began in 1636

    • Daytime paid police patrols began in 1830s

    • Northern states differed in development from southern states

    • Local mayors often personally administered punishment

The evolution of the detective u s origins develop

The Evolution of the Detective: U.S. Origins Develop

  • 1849 marks the first detective in Chicago

  • Plainclothes detectives became very popular and were a rapid development in comparison to European use of investigators

  • In Europe it was felt that the use of informants was beneath the Police dignity.

  • By the 1890s, nearly all heavily populated U.S. cities had full-time detectives

Who was alan pinkerton

Who Was Alan Pinkerton?

  • America’s foremost detective p11

  • Known as…

    “America’s Founder of Criminal Investigation”

  • First detective of the Chicago Police Department in 1849

  • Opened a private detective agency in the early 1850s–the North-Western Police Agency

Criminal investigation on the federal level p13

Criminal Investigation on the Federal Level p13

  • Congress created the office of the attorney general in 1789

  • Until 1865, most federal investigations were contracted out to private detectives

  • From 1865 ̶ 1870 the federal government created:

    • U.S. Secret Service

    • Internal Revenue Service

    • Custom Service

    • Department of Justice

  • FBI created in 1909 but wasn’t organized until 1924 by J. Edgar Hoover

The federal bureau of investigation p13

The Federal Bureau of Investigation p13

  • Significant contributions to the overall development of criminal investigation

  • Created a national identification file in Washington D.C.

  • Uniform Crime Reports Bulletin (Index Crimes tracked)

  • Crime laboratories

  • Leaders in investigative competence

Development of criminalistics p14

Development of Criminalistics p14

  • Prior to the 1900s, investigations relied mostly upon interactions of people

    • Informants

    • Interviews

    • Interrogations

  • Forensic science now has a prominent role in almost all criminal investigations

What is forensic science p14

What is Forensic Science? p14

  • The application of natural science to the detection of crime

    • Chemistry

    • Physics

    • Biology

    • Mathematics

  • Scientifically trained investigators function as a liaison between specialized scientists and police officials

  • There are over 300 public crime labs in the U.S. today

Organization of a state crime lab based on wi crime lab

Organization of a State Crime Lab (Based on WI Crime Lab)

Scientific analysis of physical evidence is conducted by 10 or 11 specialized units

grouped into three sections. (A brief description of the areas of analysis for each

unit is listed below.)

  • Chemistry

    • Drug Identification

    • Toxicology

    • Trace

  • Criminalistics

    • Firearm/Toolmark

    • Identification

    • Forensic Imaging

    • Questioned Document

    • Field Response

    • AFIS

  • DNA Analysis

    • DNA Databank

    • DNA Analysis

      Information obtained from: http://www.doj.state.wi.us/dles/crimelabs/analysis.asp

Alphonse bertillon founder of criminal identification

Alphonse Bertillon: Founder of Criminal Identification

  • Bertillon p15

    • Recognized, in 1879, the shortfalls of existing methods of identifying criminals

    • Created a new system called anthropometry, adopted in 1882

      • Human body measured in 11 critical places

      • Color of eyes, hair, and skin

      • System was 4,194,304 to 1 accurate

      • Adopted by police departments in Europe and the U.S. for more than 20 years

Alphonse bertillon founder of criminal identification continued

Alphonse Bertillon: Founder of Criminal Identification Continued…

  • Bertillon

    • Credited with the “mug shot”

    • Developed the famous portrait parle’

    • Instrumental in the science of fingerprinting–first expert in Europe to solve a murder case solely by means of fingerprint evidence

    • Died in 1914; known today for being instrumental for the inclusion of science and record-keeping in police identification

Other contributors to criminalistics p19

Juan Vucetich

Fingerprint classification

Francis Galton

Dactylography (Fingerprint Identification)

Edward Richard Henry

Devised a fingerprint classification system

Arthur Conan Doyle

Wrote fiction depicting Sherlock Holmes

Other Contributors to Criminalistics p19

Other contributors to criminalistics

Other Contributors to Criminalistics

  • Karl Landsteiner

    • Agglutination of human blood (blood types)

  • Calvin H. Goddard

    • Forensic ballistics

  • Hans Gross

    • Wrote field handbook for criminal investigation

  • Robert Heindl

    • Witness perception and reliability ̶he wrote a book that classified tire patterns

Other contributors to criminalistics1

Edmond Locard

Founded the Institute of Criminalistics

Coined “Every contact leaves a trace”

Rudolph Reiss

Forensic photography

Harry Soderman

Wrote Modern Criminal Investigation

Other Contributors to Criminalistics

Other contributors to criminalistics2

Other Contributors to Criminalistics

  • August Vollmer

    • Concepts in police organization and administration

    • Supervised Larson in developing the polygraph

  • Paul L. Kirk

    • Founded crime labs in Chicago and St. Louis

    • Wrote Crime Investigation: Physical Evidence and the Police Laboratory

  • Alec Jeffreys

    • Discovered DNA profiling

Legal influences on the development of criminal investigation p26

Legal Influences on the Development of Criminal Investigation p26

  • Criminal investigation is strictly governed by the law

  • Investigators must be aware of the legal guidelines

  • Important constitutional issues are found in:

    • The Bill of Rights

    • The 14th Amendment

Relationship to feds

Relationship to Feds!!

  • The Congress abhorred in anything that appeared to be a strong central government.

  • Still 13 independent countries

  • Had to have protection FROM government

The bill of rights

The Bill of Rights

  • The first ten amendments to the Constitution

  • Guarantee personal rights

  • Particular importance to criminal investigation include the:

    • Fourth Amendment ̶ search and seizure

    • Fifth Amendment ̶ obtaining information and confessions

    • Sixth Amendment ̶ assistance of counsel

The fourth amendment

The Fourth Amendment

The right of the people to be secure in their person, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

The fourth amendment affecting criminal investigations

The Fourth Amendment:Affecting Criminal Investigations

  • The exclusionary rule states that evidence obtained as a result of unreasonable searches and seizures may not be admitted into federal court

  • Rule was made applicable to state criminal courts by the U.S. Supreme Court in the case Mapp v. Ohio

Famous constitutional court cases

Famous Constitutional Court Cases

  • Mapp v. Ohio (exclusionary rule is applied to state courts)

  • Escobedo v. Illinois (when the investigation shifts to accusatory, the suspect is allowed an attorney)

  • Miranda v. Arizona (when a suspect is interrogated while in custody, he or she must be advised of their constitutional rights or any statements obtained are inadmissible)



  • Public Safety

  • Exigent circumstances

  • Inevitable discovery

  • Good Faith

Exceptions cont d


  • http://www.quizlaw.com/criminal_law/are_there_exceptions_to_the_ex.php

  • Probable Cause

Exclusionary rule

Exclusionary Rule

  • Weeks v. US.

  • Mapp v. Ohio

  • Escobedo v. Illinois

  • Miranda v. Arizona

Review questions

Review Questions

  • Explain the importance that Sir Robert Peel had on modern policing.

  • Who was Alan Pinkerton?

  • Describe the role of the FBI.

  • Define criminalistics.

  • What is forensic science?

  • Explain the importance of the constitution on criminal investigations.

  • What is the exclusionary rule?

Student questions

Student Questions

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