From emergency call to crime scene: information transference in the criminal investigation

Claire van den Eeden, Christianne J. de Poot, Peter J. van Koppen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In the present study, how crime scene investigators are informed before going to a crime scene was investigated. In order to gain more insight in the flow of information from emergency call to crime scene, semi-structured interviews were conducted in three different police regions with six crime scene investigators, six forensic team leaders, and six crime scene investigators.
Results indicate that information that crime scene investigators receive before going to a crime scene is usually limited. Most information is provided on-site by the uniformed police officers, forensic medical examiner, and tactical investigation team. This information flow is underexposed, and there are no guidelines about how it is recorded.
Even though all parties are provided with limited information, incidents are quickly labelled by emergency call responders and forensic team leaders. The influence of the framing process that occurs as a result is underestimated. Furthermore, emergency call responders and forensic team leaders have different goals in the investigative process and hardly take into account the specific needs of the crime scene investigator. In order to better meet the needs of crime scene investigators, further research about the content of the provided information, as well as at what moment it should be shared, is needed. Also, in order to determine afterward what role information may have played in the decision-making at the crime scene the recording of information should be better safeguarded.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-89
JournalForensic Science Policy & Management An International Journal
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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