News: Major Crime Response Team preserves evidence
Story by Lance Cpl. Justin Rodriguez
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. - When a serious crime is committed aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, a team of special agents with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service process and examine crime scene evidence.
When a serious crime is committed aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, a team of special agents with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service process and examine crime scene evidence.
The Major Crime Response Team consists of 10 agents who are responsible for preserving the evidence of high-impact offenses aboard base.
“We are responsible for telling the story of the crime,” said Michael Williams, supervisory special agent with NCIS. “When our team steps onto a crime scene, we do everything we can to process the scene. Everyone in the Major Case Response Team plays a vital role in a case.”
Members of the team have been trained in photography, videography, sketching, collecting fingerprints and evidence, scene reconstruction, wound dynamics, bloodstain pattern analysis and more.
Being trained in all categories allows any team member to complete the task of another agent when on scene.
“Every agent is given a job to do when we arrive on scene,” said Dana Shutt, an MCRT team leader with NCIS. “My job is to assign roles to the agents so there is no confusion or miscommunication. Assigning roles is vital because we don’t want any two agents doing the same thing, it also helps me provide guidance to any new agent we have. I make sure we have authorization on scene, and then we get to work. We only have one shot to collect as much information as possible.”
MCRT agents are also responsible for interviewing suspects and witnesses at the scene.
“I verbalize everything I see to my agents when we step on scene,” said Shutt. “From the temperature of the room to any ceiling fan on or window open. After we leave, things will be moved around by the ambulance or law enforcement, so we have to gather everything while we can. We have to interpret what happened through evidence.”
MCRT has been requested to collect evidence at crime scenes off base by the Jacksonville Police Department. They assist with crime scenes involving service members.
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