Futuristic Criminal Investigations- Part II

Specializing In Forensic Child Sexual Abuse Investigations
By Lawrence W. Daly, MSc

In 1968 the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey hit the screens across the country. I was 14 years old and very impressionable, like most of you. If you didn’t or haven’t seen the movie, it is about mankind going to the moon, finding an artificial artifact buried. The star of the movie was a computer by the name of Hal who eventually turns on the residents on the space ship. The movie was creative, innovative, intriguing and motivating. It remains a movie years ahead of its time.

It is movie’s like this that have made a difference to individuals who are able to see the future and what will be available sometime down the road. Although Hal has not surfaced as of yet, it doesn’t mean we aren’t close. If we are there the government is not sharing their scientific advancements. In investigating child sexual abuse allegations it would be significant and result oriented if law enforcement was capable of forecasting the future and develop tools which will assist those who investigate child sexual abuse allegations.

In the 2002 movie Tom Cruise plays a law enforcement officer along with Colin Farrell. The scene is in the future where criminals are caught before the crimes they commit. One such crime is the role of Tom Cruise who is in this special unit, and stands accused of one such crime, which sets the plot as he begins to prove his innocence.  The computers utilized in this movie, have now found their existence in the movies and television.  First in Human Target, CSI Miami, CSI New York, NCIS Los Angeles, and now, the new show A Gifted Man. 
The movie production of what is possible is strikingly exciting and motivating to accomplish the possibilities of the futuristic tools law enforcement will be utilizing now and in the future. The law enforcement scientist is the same as those in other scientific fields, in that they are trying new techniques, which will ultimately enhance their investigation capabilities.  It appears at this stage of innovation and creativity there are great leaps and bounds in the electronic side of investigations. Especially in tools which will assist the investigator in identifying sexual offenders.

The new DeltaSphere SceneVision Panorama is a tool which creates, annotates and presents multiple panoramic images of a crime scene. The Smartplanet Leica ScanStation C10 and Riegl Vz 400 are used to survey everything from mountain slopes to archaeological ruins. These companies and many more continue to develop these types of tools which can be utilized by the crime scene investigator.

With new technology comes the costs of these electronic tools, of which some are more expensive than others being produced. Law enforcement agencies if motivated can apply for grants with the Federal Government to find the funds necessary to buy these electronic tools.

In looking at the new technology, specifically, at the computer programs and hardware, which can be utilized by law enforcement officers, who work inside their police vehicles, there are several companies who are creating tools for the future.  Glacier Computer believes that information is the key to success in public safety.  They provide a line of computers for ambulance, fire, and police car computers, which effectively delivers information.

The T510K is a portable tablet which gives the law enforcement officer the power of desktop computing. It is slim with a rugged design, a large 10 inch display and 23-key keypad.  Glacier Computer has numerous models like the T510K taking computing options into the future.

Imagine life in law enforcement without computers. The records which law enforcement has to input and maintain are beyond reason and logic. In the child sexual abuse informational systems computers document those who commit crimes against children.  

RAINN rape, abuse, and incest national network the documents of those who prey upon children.  Turning to their website can assist the public with understanding what is happening with sexual offenders everywhere.  In 2006, RAINN helped pass a new law that enhances penalties for child sexual abuse and tightens the registration requirements for sex offenders. 

As each company and organization strives to move the criminal investigations into the 21st Century, it is important to recognize the continual efforts by them.  Everyday there is a new discovery, a new goal accomplished and a tool developed to assist law enforcement agencies with apprehending those responsible for committing crimes, especially those who sexually harm children.

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