Complete and turn in the major project for the course. In this project, a formal, fact-based scenario is provided that you will have to address from a multitude of perspectives. You are also expected to include your knowledge of legal research from previous courses to justify your resolution to the problem presented in the scenario. The specified evidence recovery plan will be written as a formal paper, using a standard type font and size (as specified in the course syllabus), and you must adhere to the departmental guidelines on appropriate writing style manuals. Standard legal writing will be used for case law citations.
2,500 words + cover and reference page with in text citations and 4 or more sources. Must have a low OV score
Scenario overview: Evidence in a cyber crime case involving child pornography has been compromised while being handled.
Your position: Investigator for the District Attorney’s Office
Your duties: Conduct investigations of a generally routine nature for purposes such as locating and identifying witnesses or suspects in felony and misdemeanor cases, collecting and analyzing criminal evidence, conducting interviews, executing search warrants and warrants of arrest, serving process, and gathering relevant evidence to support the prosecution of cases. You may also staff the department’s command post to provide emergency and routine communications when the District Attorney’s Office is closed, and perform or participate in witness protection, surveillances, and arrests of suspects in criminal cases.
Your job functions: The District Attorney Inspector position requires knowledge of the following:
- Modern criminal investigative techniques and procedures
- Methods of screening, evaluating, preparing, and preserving evidence and exhibits for trial
- Laws of arrest, search and seizure, citizens’ rights, rules of evidence, and rules of discovery
- Criminal modus operandi, ballistics, and criminal laboratory techniques
- Use and care of firearms
- Applicable state codes: Civil, Business and Professions, Health and Safety, Penal, Vehicle, and Welfare and Institutions
- Criminal and civil prosecution procedures
Your minimum qualifications: You must be in possession of a current law enforcement license or certificate that meets the state requirements for law enforcement officers. You must have at least 2 years (within the last 5 years) of experience in law enforcement as a paid peace officer or as an investigator with the federal government as defined in the Federal Job Series 1811, and you must have an Associate’s degree or higher from an accredited college or university.
Scenario: As the DA Investigator in your local office (wherever you currently live), you are gathering the evidence together, preparing to take the materials to the courthouse for a trial that starts in 3 days. As you are inventorying the evidence collected during a Fourth Amendment search of the suspect’s premises, you note that the evidence bag containing the computer hard drive has been cut open. The cut in the bag is large enough for the drive to have been removed from the bag and the faraday cloth that wraps the drive. This computer hard drive contained the essential evidence of production of child pornography and the images and videos showing that the suspect was involved in a number of sexual assaults on minors of both genders. Without this evidence, there is no probability of obtaining a conviction.
For this IP: Using the resources provided throughout this course, including reading materials from this and previous lessons, as well as the information you have acquired throughout the Criminal Justice degree program, develop an evidence recovery plan to present to the DA, judge, and defense attorney.
Include the following in your evidence recovery plan:
- Appropriate means to recover the data that may have been compromised
- Relevant case law citations that support your plan.
List all of your assumptions, including the following:
- The evidence was properly collected from the suspect’s residence under the guise of a valid warrant.
- The evidence was properly received and stored in the law enforcement evidence storage facility.
- There is no known reason for the evidence bag to have been cut open.
- The steps for digital evidence collection, examination, and analysis as promulgated by the Department of Justice and all applicable state laws were followed.
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