Published on March 13, 2014
UNCLASSIFIED Maximising the Benefits of Forensics to Law Enforcement Simon Walsh PhD Chief Scientist, Forensics
UNCLASSIFIED Forensics • Effective management of forensics must proceed out of a system- wide awareness of its role and impact This leads to a range of areas that forensic and law enforcement professionals must comprehend and confront • The relevant context is typified by distinct… Technological, Operational and Socio-legal complexities • The relevant context is investigative… Seeking to provide answers to operational and legal enquiries
UNCLASSIFIED Forensics POLICE JUSTICE FORENSIC SCIENCE Walsh SJ. (2007) Current and future trends in forensic molecular biology. In: Rapely, R. and Whitehouse, D. (Ed). Molecular Forensics. John Wiley & Sons: London, pp. 1-20
UNCLASSIFIED Forensics POLICE JUSTICE FORENSIC SCIENCE Operational context: • Mature users • Mature technology • Service driven (TATs) • Outcome driven Socio-Legal context: • Expert Opinion • Impartial • Conclusive • Address legal issues Scientific context: • Technology • Scientific method
UNCLASSIFIED Forensics POLICE JUSTICE FORENSIC SCIENCE Operational context: • Mature users • Mature technology • Service driven (TATs) • Outcome driven Socio-Legal context: • Expert Opinion • Impartial • Conclusive • Address legal issues
UNCLASSIFIED “Forensics”: Pendulum Swing POLICE SCIENCE SPECIALISED SCIENCE FORENSIC SCIENCE
UNCLASSIFIED Another Way to Think About it?
• Evidence items moving through multiple disciplines • Repetition of core evidence examination steps Segregated • Disciplines operating separately in siloes • Independent consideration of evidence Independent • Specialised skills dedicated to single discipline only • Extensive quality assurance framework covering disciplines independently Inflexible • Stepwise analysis led to long turn-around times and backlogs • Complicated customer interface frustrating for clients (investigators and courts) Time Consuming • Objective to produce sworn expert report and testimony • Independent reports – multiple reports and experts in every case Evidence-focussed Traditional Forensic Business Model UNCLASSIFIED
• Evidence items remain within a single laboratory precinct • Core evidence examination steps executed once within 24 hours of submission Integrated • Default analysis involves multi-disciplinary expert teams working simultaneously • Collective consideration of items facilitating knowledge-transfer and situational awareness Collaborative • Mandatory generic skills identified for all members • Streamlined quality assurance framework eliminating duplication Flexible • Evidence recovery commences upon receipt or within initial 24 hours • Single customer interface allowing clients direct access to experts Responsive • Collection and analysis of items uses potential intelligence value as first order consideration • Intelligence officers embed with forensics producing forensic intelligence product Intelligence-led New Forensic Business Model UNCLASSIFIED
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO DELIVER THIS REFORM? WORKFLOW AND WORK PRACTICES (INTEGRATED, COLLABORATIVE, RESPONSIVE)
Exhibit Registry Fingerprints Exhibit Registry Biology Exhibit Registry Check seals Unseal RecordExamine Re-seal and re-lodge Check seals Unseal RecordExamine Re-seal and re-lodge Check seals Record Store and Issue Investigator Investigator Check seals Record Store and Issue Check seals Record Store and Issue Previous AFP Exhibit Workflow
Current AFP Exhibit Workflow Check seals Unseal RecordTriage Exam Rapid Lab Exhibit Team Rapid Lab Triage and Search Team CSI/Investigator Forensic Intel Cell Other Discipline s Biology Finger prints
Previous Workforce Organisation
Current Workforce Organisation
Current Work Practices • Mapping resources to demand within existing resources • Attendance at 100% of ACT burglaries within the hour of reporting during rostered shifts • Adoption by CSIs of a broader investigative mindset with an equal focus on evidence and intelligence collection Increased recovery of evidence and intelligence Forensic Initiators: • Fingerprints (NAFIS) • DNA (NCIDD) • Shoe marks (SICAR) • Toolmarks • Glass • Handwriting (FISH) • Chemical composition of physical evidence • Fibres • The ‘fluff’ Other Initiators: • MO • Geographical location • Target type • Time of day • Number of offenders
Current Work Practices • Improved communication within forensics • Greater interaction with ACTP with an Intelligence Officer embedded within forensics • Enhanced relationships with DPP and ACT Magistrates Enhanced internal and external relationships
Operational Impact (ACT Region) Reactive to ACTP targets and priorities >5,000 cases triaged in Rapid Lab >15,000 items processed in Rapid Lab Conducted ‘Drive Through forensics’ Significantly reduced Turnaround times Intelligence Products produced for ACTP Reduction in property crime rates Discovery of unintended benefits Positive feedback from ACTP
Burglary Rates Per Capita 2010-2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Crime Victimisation, Australia”, 2010-11 (cat no.4530.0), http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4530.0Main+Features12010-11?OpenDocument 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 NSW Vic Qld SA WA Tas NT ACT Australia
Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Crime Victimisation, Australia”, 2011-12 (cat no.4530.0), http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/ProductsbyReleaseDate/371CB1F33E24E682CA2579AA000F2C7F?OpenDo cument 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 NSW Vic Qld SA WA Tas NT ACT Australia Burglary Rates Per Capita 2011-2012
Burglary rates per capita 2008-2012 Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Crime Victimisation, Australia”, 2011-12 (cat no.4530.0), http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/ProductsbyReleaseDate/371CB1F33E24E682CA2579AA000F2C7F?OpenDo cument
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO DELIVER THIS REFORM? CONSULTANCY (FLEXIBLE & ADAPTIVE, INTELLIGENCE-LED)
Consultancy Model “Operations support capability owners should be consulted early during the planning stage to determine how each can be best utilised. Through the consultative process the investigator should nominate objectives required and operations support will determine the most suitable approaches for achieving those objectives” AFP Investigations Doctrine
Consultancy Model •Borrowing from Dr Maria (CIO, ACC)… “Speak English” −Clear understanding of outcomes sought, priorities, considerations and constraints “Know where you want to end up” −What does success look like? −Very important for scientists! −Fit-for-purpose vs. Fully evolved “The importance of agility” −Rapid prototyping −Culture of innovation, action-oriented leadership, try-fail
Capability Management •Well-understood notion of capability Team Leaders as capability advisors −Gateway to services •Well-targeted investment in S&T, R&D, skills & competencies Drivers for R&D −Increased value to operations −Increased efficiency of operations −Intelligence-oriented −Field-deployable −Innovative
Example: National Forensic Rapid Lab (NFRL) •National Forensic Rapid Lab (NFRL) processes seizures from parcel post for drug identification •NFRL aims to: Provide actionable intelligence to investigators Produce operational actions to prevent, disrupt and detect importation and distribution of illicit and novel drugs.
NFRL SIG 4 Example Handwriting Example
National Forensic Rapid Lab (NFRL) • 350-500 items seized p/w • Examinations consist of: Record/Image − Packaging/concealment method (digitise) − Consignor/consignee details − Country of origin & destination State Scan & compare handwriting − ‘FISH’ handwriting comparison software – 1 day TAT Enhance and record latent Fingerprints − Stand-alone ULP-ULP comparison - rapid TAT Drug Identification & record drug net weight DNA Collection (for Intell. confirmation only) First 6 months • Seized over 500kg drugs • Same day examinations and turnaround (~100 items) • DHI >$125 million • Novel Drugs average 1 p/w
Fingerprints and Intelligence • The database contains latent prints that are: Only collected from parcels post seizures Unidentified and likely from overseas perpetrators (no NAFIS comparison) • Between 30 March and 30 Oct 2013 1667 latent impressions added to database • Simplified examination and search procedure Able to process 100 latent fingerprints within a few hours • Images undergo minimal processing by specialists Vertically aligned, cropped and rotated (max. 1000 dpi) Identifier number added
Fingerprints and Intelligence • Searching on Fingerprint DB No search parameters entered i.e. pattern type, code minutiae Search algorithm produces a prioritised list of match candidates • Confirmation of match Single fingerprint expert examines the reported match Intelligence link between seizures are reported to NFRL − Not for court purposes • 40% link rate for ULP-ULP comparisons Second highest link rate behind package morphology − 60% link rate overall • Future state Upgrade to automatic latent processing − NFRL technical officers can upload Apply to other scenarios (crime types)
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO DELIVER THIS REFORM? QUALITY (SCIENCE CREDIBILITY)
February 2007Simon J. Walsh – Biological Criminalistics
Operational Quality •No longer and administrative process •Operational Quality is Process Driven Inbuilt – Not an Extra Aligned with AFP Strategic Principles & Forensic Principles −Eliminate Duplication −Flexible −Intelligence Led −Integrated • Designed by Forensics members
Operational Quality: Fundamentals • Good Laboratory Practices Standard Work → Increased Efficiency Reduce Variation → Reduce Waste • Manage Change Adds Value Visible / Traceable Compliant • Quality Metrics • Integrated System • Risk Based Flexibility Members Expertise Appropriately Applied Knowledge Based Fit For Purpose Responsive / Adaptive Documented • Root Cause Analysis Determine the actual root cause Effective CAPA Reduce Risk
Operational Quality: Concept Detect Examination of scene / item for relevant forensic material Record Record the condition, position & location prior to collection Collect Collection of the forensic material (all / sampling plan) Triage Assess & decide what analysis to progress Analyse Generate scientific data Interpret Interpret scientific data, form both opinion & factual result Report Document interpretations as a formal statement of fact or opinion based report - includes interim, court & intelligence reports QMS Change Control, Risk Management, Document Control etc.
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO DELIVER THIS REFORM? NEW PURPOSE-BUILT FORENSIC FACILITY (ALL OF THE ABOVE)
Summary •Revised Forensic model Best of both worlds −Specialist, operationally focussed capability •Built around… Support to operations −Disruptive effect Enhanced capability −Dynamic, innovative Science credibility −Risk-based, empowered
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