CRIME LABORATORY EVIDENCE SUBMISSION MANUAL Florida Department of Law Enforcement Gerald M. Bailey, Commissioner 2009 COPYRIGHT © 2009 by Florida Department of Law Enforcement CRIME LABORATORY EVIDENCE SUBMISSION MANUAL The Florida Department of Law Enforcement Crime Laboratory System has developed this manual for the criminal justice community to provide useful information for submitting evidence to any of the state-operated laboratories. This publication is intended to provide instructions for special handling and submission of exhibits to a crime laboratory.
You may encounter unusual types of evidence not covered in this manual. Please consult your FDLE regional laboratory for assistance. In the event of a request that is outside of the case acceptance guidelines, it is essential to make contact and receive approval via phone or e-mail with the laboratory management prior to delivering the evidence to FDLE.
The evidence intake section cannot accept requests that are outside of the case acceptance guidelines without documented approval. It is recommended that the submitting agency contact their FDLE regional laboratory to triage evidence on complex cases. Page 2 of 68 cWherever he steps, whatever he touches, whatever he leaves, even unconsciously, will serve as silent evidence against him.
Not only his fingerprints or his footprints, but also ... more. less.
his hair, the fibers from his clothes, the glass he breaks, the tool marks he leaves, the paint he scratches, the blood or semen that he deposits or collect 4all of these and more bear mute witness against him. This is evidence that does not forget. It is not confused by the excitement of the moment.<br><br> It is not absent because human witnesses are. It is factual evidence. Physical evidence cannot be wrong; it cannot perjure itself; it cannot be wholly absent.<br><br> Only its interpretation can err. Only human failure to find it, study and understand it, can diminish its value. d From Kirk, Paul L. Crime Investigation.<br><br> New York: Interscience Publishers, 1953 Page 3 of 68 CONTENTS I. FDLE FORENSIC SCIENCE SERVICES LOCATIONS&&&&&&&&&&&. 5 II.<br><br> CRIME LABORATORY SERVICES&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&... 6 III. CRIME SCENE: HOW TO COLLECT EVIDENCE&&&&&&&&&&&&& 7 IV.<br><br> SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&. 10 V. HOW TO SUBMIT EVIDENCE&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&...<br><br> 12 VI. PHYSICAL EVIDENCE EXAMINATIONS&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& 15 A. Arson&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&........................<br><br> 15 B. Biology&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&. Blood 16 Hair Semen.<br><br> Serology/DNA Touch Evidence C. Controlled Substances&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& 24 D. Digital and Multimedia Evidence&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&.<br><br> 26 Computer Evidence Video Evidence E. DNA Database Overview&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&. 30 F.<br><br> Firearms and Tool Marks&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&. 33 Firearms Serial Number Restoration NIBIN Toolmarks G. Latent Prints&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&..<br><br> 40 AFIS/BIS 4Automated Fingerprint Identification System/Biometric Identification Solution Latents Footwear, Tire and Miscellaneous Impressions H. Skeletal Remains&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&... 49 I.<br><br> Toxicology&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& 51 J. Trace Analysis&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&. Fabric, Fabric Marks and Fibers Fractured Materials Glass Gunshot Residue Light Filaments Paint Plastics and Adhesives 55 VII.<br><br> USING THE LABORATORY IN THE JUDICIAL PROCESS&&&&&..&&&&&&&&& 68 Page 4 of 68 I. FDLE FORENSIC SCIENCE SERVICES LOCATIONS FDLE Pensacola Regional Operations Center 1301 North Palafox Street Pensacola, Florida 32501-2640 (850) 595-2100 FDLE Tallahassee Regional Operations Center 2331 Phillips Road Tallahassee, Florida 32308 (850) 410-7645 FDLE Jacksonville Regional Operations Center 921 North Davis Street, Building E Jacksonville, Florida 32209-6804 (904) 360-7100 FDLE Daytona Beach FDLE Tampa Crime Laboratory Regional Operations Center 810 Fentress Court, Suite 110 4211 North Lois Avenue Daytona Beach, Florida 32117 Tampa, Florida 33614 (386) 274-3829 (813) 878-7300 FDLE Orlando FDLE Fort Myers Regional Operations Center Regional Operations Center 500 West Robinson Street 4700 Terminal Drive, Suite 1 Orlando, FL 32801-1771 Fort Myers, Florida 33907 (407) 245-0888 (239) 278-7170 Pensacola Region 7 Bay Tallahassee Region Jacksonville Region Tampa Bay Region Orlando Region Miami Region Ft. Myers Region Tallahassee Daytona Jacksonville Pensacola Tampa Ft.<br><br> Myers Orland Orlando Page 5 of 68 II. CRIME LABORATORY SERVICES The Florida Department of Law Enforcement provides crime laboratory services to all local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies in Florida for the purpose of providing assistance in criminal investigations and judicial proceedings, including 24-hour crime scene assistance. Call the crime laboratory in your service area for assistance.<br><br> FDLE Crime Laboratories provide the following forensic services; call the crime laboratory in your service area to learn which services are provided: Biology/DNA Latent Print Analysis Controlled Substances Digital and Multimedia Analysis Firearms Footwear and Tire Impression Analysis Toolmarks Toxicology Gunshot Residue Trace Analysis (Glass, Paint, Polymer, Fiber) Crime Scene A. Cases Handled All submissions of exhibits should be in connection with criminal investigations. No examinations will be conducted for private individuals or corporations.<br><br> B. Cost of Services Normally all laboratory examinations, court appearances, and travel expenses are available without charge. The only exception is a criminal case in which the court orders laboratory services upon the defendant showing cause, as described in F.S.<br><br> § 943.33. C. Functions of the Laboratories 1.<br><br> To identify, compare, and interpret physical evidence. 2. To furnish expert testimony before the court concerning examinations conducted on evidence or related matters.<br><br> Make an official request for testimony with a subpoena. 3. To furnish crime scene processing advice and/or assistance in major criminal cases.<br><br> The head of an agency or the supervising employee responsible for the conduct of the investigation should make the request. The official requesting this service should inform the laboratory of the type of crime, the basic circumstances surrounding the case, and the specific type of assistance required. This information will allow the most appropriate laboratory personnel to be available.<br><br> 4. To render aid to court officials in connection with the preparation of scientific and technical phases of certain cases for trial. 5.<br><br> To furnish instruction concerning physical evidence at law enforcement training schools and to officers of any law enforcement agency. Page 6 of 68 III. CRIME SCENE: HOW TO COLLECT EVIDENCE Crime scene analysts respond to requests by local law enforcement agencies for examination of major crime scenes.<br><br> Criminal investigations often require the documentation, preservation, and collection of physical evidence. This evidence is later analyzed at the crime laboratory. Analysts use cameras, video equipment, alternative light sources, and other equipment to sequentially record and document the evidence and their observations at the crime scene, and they also provide other specialized crime scene services.<br><br> Analysts provide training to local law enforcement agencies covering the overall functions of the crime laboratory and the proper procedures for documenting, preserving, collecting, and submitting physical evidence to the laboratory. The collection process includes the following recommendations: 1. Clear all nonessential persons from the crime scene including officers not collecting evidence.<br><br> The more people present, the greater chance there is for damage, loss, or movement of evidence. 2. DNA sample should be collected from all persons entering the scene prior to the DNA evidence being collected and secured.<br><br> These samples will be used for elimination purposes. 3. All persons entering a scene where blood and body fluids are present should wear personal protection equipment such as gloves, shoe covers, disposable jumpsuits, etc.<br><br> to prevent contamination. Additionally, the scene should be marked as a biohazard area through the use of barrier tape or signs. 4.<br><br> Designate one or two persons to collect all evidence. This places responsibility on specific individuals and avoids confusion if questions arise later as to where the items were found and who found them. 5.<br><br> Record the scene by photographing, video tape recording, measuring, and sketching the location of all evidentiary items. Record and take photographs of every item before moving them. Record the items, noting the condition, location, date and time of collection, and who collected each item.<br><br> 6. Use a systematic approach when searching for evidence. Study the whole scene first because the relationship of different item positions may be important.<br><br> Search the crime scene area so that hidden evidence is not overlooked. Consider what significance the items may have and what examinations the laboratory conducts. 7.<br><br> Place permanent and distinctive marks of identification directly on the package, then insert the evidence. Page 7 of 68 8. Place each item or similar items found at different locations in separate containers.<br><br> This prevents damage through contact and eliminates cross-contamination. Refer to the appropriate physical evidence examination section for details on containers. 9.<br><br> Store evidence in a safe, evidence vault, or locker where others do not have access. 10. Keep the chain of custody short because each person having an item in his or her possession may be required to testify in court.<br><br> CONTAINERS " Instructions regarding containers used for specific types of evidence are found in the various sections of this manual. Always use clean, new containers to prevent contamination. (Figure 1 ).<br><br> " Paper envelopes and paper bags are suitable for enclosing paper items and apothecary folds containing small, dry, or powdery material. (Figure 2). " Vials, pill boxes, or match boxes are suitable for most small items.<br><br> " Bags or paper can be sealed around the end or over areas of large items, such as tools, safes, and vehicle bumpers to prevent loss of adhering evidence. " Plastic zipper bags are suitable for small, dry objects not requiring serological, DNA, or microanalysis examination. Do not put damp or biological items in plastic bags as bacteria or fungus may grow.<br><br> " Seal containers with frangible evidence tape to prevent loss, contamination, or access by unauthorized persons. " Avoid staples as they may tear gloves or puncture the skin. Page 8 of 68 Figure 1 4Selecting Proper Evidence Container Use care in the selection of containers for items of physical evidence.<br><br> Particular requirements of a specific type of evidence are found in the appropriate section of this manual. Figure 2 4Pharmaceutical/Apothecary Packets for Trace Evidence Submission Pharmaceutical/Apothecary packets are useful for collecting most types of trace evidence such as paint, glass, soil, hair, fibers, and other debris. Gently place or move the evidence to the center, then fold the paper so that no edges are left open.<br><br> Tape the small packet securely and label appropriately. Page 9 of 68 IV. SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS Much of the evidence collected by law enforcement agencies is potentially hazardous.<br><br> The hazards relate to the types of exposure individuals have with the items of evidence. Four common methods of exposure are inhalation, absorption, ingestion, and injection. The risk of exposure can be reduced by the selection of appropriate packaging materials and the placement of hazard warnings on the exterior of the evidence containers.<br><br> 1. Packaging of Liquid Body Fluid Samples A. Liquid blood and urine should be packaged in a crush-proof container that will contain all contents and prevent leakage during handling, storage, and transport.<br><br> B. Label with the international biohazard symbol and warning label. C.<br><br> For transport information, see Mailing/Commercial Carriers information on page 12 . 2. Labeling of Biohazard Evidence Mark all exterior packages with the international biohazard symbol and label if the package contains liquid or dried blood, body-packed contraband, body parts, or body fluids (semen, vaginal fluid, urine).<br><br> 3. Packaging of Sharps A. A sharp is any object or device capable of puncturing the skin.<br><br> Injection of a bloodborne pathogen such as HIV (AIDS virus), HBV (hepatitis virus), and others can occur by the accidental exposure to blood or body-fluid-contaminated sharps. Sharps include glass tubes, razor blades, scalpel blades, knives, hypodermic syringes and needles, and other items capable of cutting or penetrating the skin. B.<br><br> Blood or body-fluid-contaminated sharps 1. Because of the possibility of an accidental needle puncture, hypodermic syringes continue to pose a health and safety threat both to contributors and to laboratory personnel. The laboratory will not accept hypodermic syringes as evidence.<br><br> 2. Package in rigid, puncture-resistant, leak-proof containers. 3.<br><br> Use the international biohazard symbol and label with the words, WARNING: CONTAINS SHARPS. 4. For examples of packaging using the biohazard symbol, see page 15.<br><br> C. Sharps not contaminated with blood or body fluids 1. Package glass to prevent breakage; secure knives, razor blades, etc., within cardboard or similar support or in boxes.<br><br> 2. Label with the words, WARNING: CONTAINS SHARPS. 4.<br><br> Packaging of Firearms Unload all firearms prior to packaging, if possible. Use metal gun safes for the submission of loaded firearms. Loaded firearms must be hand delivered to the laboratory for submission and labeled with the words, WARNING: LOADED FIREARM .<br><br> 5. Flammables and Hazardous Materials Page 10 of 68 Consult with the laboratory prior to the transport and submission of any of these items for examination. 6.<br><br> Plant Material Package dried plant material in paper bags or boxes. Storage and packaging of freshly cut or moist plant material in plastic facilitates the development of mold. Not only does the mold make analysis more difficult, it may also change the condition of the plant material and make it unsuitable for analysis.<br><br> Additionally, the inhalation of mold spores may cause respiratory problems. 7. Mailing/Commercial Carriers A.<br><br> Certain regulations of the U.S. Postal Service cover the mailing of certain types of evidence. 1.<br><br> Liquid biological fluids such as urine or blood specimens must be packaged in a securely sealed primary container with sufficient shock-resistant material to withstand shock and pressure changes. An absorbent material should surround the primary container or otherwise be configured to take up the contents in case of a leakage. There should also be an outer shipping container with secondary leak-proof materials so that, if there is leakage of the primary container during shipment, the contents will not escape from the outer container.<br><br> (Figures 3 and 4). In summary: Primary container must seal securely and be leak proof. Absorbent material must surround primary container in sufficient volume to absorb entire contents.<br><br> Secondary container must seal securely and be leak proof. Shipping container must be constructed of fiber board or other crush-proof material. 2.<br><br> Unloaded firearms may be sent via registered mail. 3. The U.S.<br><br> Postal Service will not transport human remains or body parts. 4. Flammables and hazardous materials have specific regulations governing their mailing.<br><br> Consult with the U.S. Postal Service and the laboratory before sending any of these items to the laboratory. B.<br><br> Commercial carriers may have additional regulations and should be consulted regarding their individual requirements. The packaging and marking requirements for evidence of blood and body fluids are based on the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogen Standards, CFR Title 29 1910.1030, and on U.S. Postal Regulations, Domestic Mail Manual, C010.<br><br> Other courier services may have additional requirements. V. HOW TO SUBMIT EVIDENCE Page 11 of 68 Several methods may be used to submit evidence to the laboratory.<br><br> The method selected will depend upon the type and size of the item, the urgency, or the complexity of the case. Whatever method is used, take care to assure that the evidence will not be lost, damaged, or contaminated, and that the chain of custody is as short as possible. When submitting evidence to an FDLE laboratory, the agency is agreeing to all the terms and conditions for analysis set forth in the FDLE Evidence Submission Manual.<br><br> The laboratory will determine the test methods used. A. Identifying Information Required FDLE Evidence Prelog is a Web browser-based application solely for the law enforcement customers of the FDLE crime laboratory system.<br><br> This program enables law enforcement agencies to pre-fill out evidence submission information prior to delivery to an FDLE crime laboratory. Once completed, all the agency has to do is provide the Prelog packing slip when either hand delivering or mailing in the evidence. This program eliminates the past requirement for evidence information to be saved on a disc or travel drive, thus drastically reducing the amount of time spent during the actual delivery of the evidence to a FDLE laboratory.<br><br> Law enforcement agencies can obtain their account information by contacting the evidence section supervisor in the FDLE laboratory in their region. Items may be brought to the laboratory in person or sent by common carrier. Certain information must accompany exhibits to ensure that the proper examinations are conducted and that accurate records are maintained.<br><br> A completed Prelog packing slip must accompany the items submitted containing the following information: 1. name of subject, if applicable 2. name of victim, if applicable 3.<br><br> offense and offense date 4. agency submitting evidence and agency case number 5. name and phone number of officer submitting evidence and to whom reports should be sent and/or evidence returned 6.<br><br> list of item(s) and location of item(s) recovered (Describe what is questionable evidence and what is known evidence.) 7. type of examination desired 8. brief summary of the details of the case that are pertinent to the laboratory examination 9.<br><br> notes concerning any accidental or intentional changes to the items made by the investigator 10. laboratory case number if items are additional evidence for a case already submitted to the crime laboratory Use the laboratory case number for all inquiries to the laboratory concerning evidence. Reference this number to court officials involved in the case so it can be used on subpoenas.<br><br> B. Packaging and Marking for Delivery Page 12 of 68 1. Mark each item clearly when possible and put in separate containers to prevent cross- contamination.<br><br> 2. Label each container with your agency case number and the item/exhibit number. 3.<br><br> When mailing or shipping, pack securely in a box to prevent damage and seal the box. Place Prelog packing slip in an envelope and attach to the outside of the sealed evidence package, but inside the mailing container. 4.<br><br> Use certified mail and return receipt when mailing most exhibits. 5. Use registered mail and return receipt when mailing controlled substances, firearms, or exhibits of large monetary value 6.<br><br> The minimum size of the outer packaging should be 4 1/2" x 7". This is to accommodate the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) label, evidence tape, marks, etc. 7.<br><br> If possible, for cases in which more than one section of the lab will be examining evidence, package the evidence separately for each section. This will expedite handling within the laboratory. 8.<br><br> Note any special warnings on the package: WARNING: Liquid blood inside. Refrigerate upon arrival. WARNING: Hepatitis (HBV) or AIDS (HIV) Positive WARNING: Biological Hazards WARNING: Glass WARNING: Sharps WARNING: Loaded Weapon 9.<br><br> Blood samples for toxicology testing which are not hand-delivered must be sent by priority mail, overnight delivery service, or other equivalent delivery service. 10. See page 10 for the packaging of liquid blood or urine samples.<br><br> 11. Put the biohazard warning symbol on all packages containing evidence contaminated with blood or body fluids and label with warning information. 12.<br><br> Sharps, such as knives or scalpels, must be packaged in puncture-proof containers. 13. See page 6 for the mailing addresses for all the crime laboratories.<br><br> C. Delivery in Person 1. Personal delivery of evidence is often the best method in complex or large cases.<br><br> 2. Location of the FDLE crime laboratories are found on page 6. Make prior arrangements with the laboratory for evidence delivered before 8 a.m.<br><br> or after 5 p.m. D. Submission of Large Items An automobile to be examined externally should be driven as little as possible.<br><br> If it is necessary to transport it a long distance, deliver it in a covered truck or trailer. Contact the laboratory 9s Crime Scene Section regarding the submission of automobiles for examination prior to transport to the laboratory. An automobile to be examined internally for blood, hair, fibers, or fingerprints should not be driven.<br><br> Access to the interior should be limited to reduce the possibility of contamination. E. Return of Evidence by the Laboratory Page 13 of 68 1.<br><br> Upon completion of examinations, the crime laboratory will normally return evidence to the submitting agency. 2. Evidence will be returned routinely only to a representative of the original submitting agency.<br><br> With direct written authorization from the original submitting agency, the crime laboratory may return evidence to representatives of other agencies. 3. Large quantities of controlled substances will not be returned by mail.<br><br> The submitting agency should make arrangements to pick up such evidence at the laboratory. Figures 3 and 4 4Packaging Evidence Page 14 of 68 This packaging is an example of possible ways in which evidence can be packaged. Liquid and body fluids should be packaged in leak-proof packaging with absorbent material.<br><br> See the text for additional explanations. VI. PHYSICAL EVIDENCE EXAMINATIONS A.<br><br> ARSON FDLE does not perform Arson/Fire Debris analysis. For arson cases please contact the State Fire Marshal 9s Office Fire and Arson Lab or the regional Fire Marshal 9s Office. Page 15 of 68 B.<br><br> BIOLOGY (Serology and DNA) The Biology section conducts the examination and testing of biological evidence through serology and Short Tandem Repeats (STR) 3DNA testing. DNA can be obtained from biological specimens left at crime scenes such as murder, aggravated battery, sexual assault, hit-and-run, and burglary. The biological specimens most often encountered include blood evidence, seminal fluid, or saliva.<br><br> For blood evidence, the laboratory determines through chemical testing if blood is possibly present. Liquid blood samples collected by qualified medical personal may also be submitted to be utilized as standards for DNA testing. NOTE: FDLE crime laboratories no longer determine the non-human origin of blood with species testing, e.g., cat, dog, etc.<br><br> Contact the crime lab to obtain a list of referral labs if such testing is required. In addition to blood evidence, the crime laboratory can conduct conventional serology examinations on other body fluids. The examination most frequently requested is for the identification of semen in connection with sexual assault cases.<br><br> Examination may reveal the Page 16 of 68 presence or absence of the following: acid phosphatase (a characteristic component of seminal fluid), spermatozoa (male reproductive cells), and/or prostatic specific antigen. The third body fluid that is tested for is saliva. Certain items of evidence may contain amylase, a component of human saliva.<br><br> A presumptive test for amylase can be done on appropriate evidence. These exhibits may be used for DNA analysis and include such items as cigarette butts, drinking straws, soda/beer cans, masks, bottles, etc. Sexual assault evidence and bite marks may also contain saliva.<br><br> Buccal cell swabs may also be submitted to be used as standards for DNA testing. For criminal paternity cases, samples from the mother, child (or fetal material), and the alleged father must be submitted prior to performing STR-DNA analysis. The crime laboratory also provides testing on hair evidence.<br><br> Following an examination for the suitability of the hairs, STR-DNA testing may be performed on hair evidence associated with violent crimes. However, the crime laboratory does not provide microscopic hair comparison. For reasons of potential contamination, DNA analysis will not be performed on vacuum sweepings.<br><br> Touch evidence is defined as evidence which has no visible staining and would contain DNA that only results from touching an item with the skin. Touch evidence does not include cigarette butts, swabbing from cans, bottles straws or other items in which the substance being tested is most likely saliva. Touch evidence also does not include items submitted for wearer such as shirts, shoes, hats, etc.<br><br> where there is a probability of prolonged contact. 1. Case Acceptance Guidelines Exhibits must be submitted in compliance with the case acceptance guidelines of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.<br><br> DNA testing will be complete when an association is established from probative evidence. (For example an association is established between the subject and the victim). A scenario must be provided with the submitted evidence.<br><br> The scenario will establish the value of each item as to its likelihood to provide probative results or an investigative lead. The type and number of items accepted per submission is based on case type. For all case types, known standards from victim(s) or subject(s) will not count against the number of items that may be submitted.<br><br> An item is expected to be comprised of one piece of evidence (e.g. one piece of clothing, swabbing of blood from a single area, or one weapon). If items are received packaged together, the number of items in the package will be considered to be the number of items submitted (e.g.<br><br> pants, shirt and shoes packaged together will be considered three items). a. Sexual Assaults: " The first submission is limited to a sexual assault evidence kit plus one pair of underwear (if not already in the kit) and one condom, if applicable.<br><br> " If probative biology results are obtained, additional items will not be examined, unless case circumstances dictate the need for additional processing. " If no probative results are found, clothing or bedding may be submitted in separate submissions 3 limited to 5 items per submission. Page 17 of 68 b.<br><br> Homicides: " Biology evidence is limited to 5 items per submission. " If probative biology results are obtained, additional items will not be examined, unless case circumstances dictate the need for additional processing. " If no probative results are found on the first submission, the next tier of probative items, (maximum of 5 items) may be submitted.<br><br> c. Burglary/property crimes: " The first submission is limited to 2 items for biology 3 typically blood sample(s) from the scene, or items left by the perpetrator (cigarette butt, item of clothing). " If a profile is developed, additional items will not be examined, unless case circumstances (such as multiple perpetrators) dictate the need for additional analysis.<br><br> d. Other case types (robbery, assault, etc.): " Each submission is limited to 5 items for biology. e.<br><br> Criminal Parentage Cases: " Submissions must include a buccal swab (preferred) or liquid blood (purple topped tube) standard from mother or alleged mother, father or alleged father, the child and if necessary, the product of conception (frozen with no preservatives). " No partial submissions will be accepted, unless dictated by case circumstances (such as the mother is deceased or maternity is in question and the father is unknown). f.<br><br> Touch Evidence " Touch evidence will be accepted for possible STR DNA analysis when there is a high degree of likelihood that the evidence submitted will provide probative results or investigative leads. A high degree of likelihood may be established by means of witness corroboration, visual monitoring systems, or sound deductive reasoning. " Touch evidence will be processed on violent crime cases only.<br><br> " Touch evidence will be processed only when no other probative evidence exists. " Touch evidence will be processed by the Biology/DNA section only if it has not been previously processed by another discipline. " Items submitted for touch evidence processing will comply with existing policy relating to the number of items of evidence that may be submitted based upon case type.<br><br> " Elimination standards should be submitted with touch evidence where appropriate (e.g. owner of stolen vehicle used in a violent crime such as carjacking). 2.<br><br> Limitations of Biological (Serology and DNA) Examinations and Testing a. The age of dried blood, seminal stains, or possible saliva stains cannot be determined. b.<br><br> Whole blood transfusions may alter blood chemistry. In these cases collect an alternate standard for DNA testing such as a buccal (inside check) swab in addition to the blood. c.<br><br> For sexual assault cases, a standard must be obtained from the victim prior to DNA analysis. If the suspect is known, submit a standard for the suspect also. Intimate contact such as kissing may lead to a mixture of body fluids.<br><br> This should be taken into consideration before obtaining a buccal (inside cheek) swab to serve as a DNA standard. d. Very old or highly degraded DNA samples may yield results, may give an incomplete DNA profile, or may not yield results.<br><br> e. Hairs must have a root suitable for DNA analysis. The laboratory will microscopically examine the hairs to determine if a suitable root is present.<br><br> Relative to hair examinations, vacuum samples are not suitable for DNA testing. Page 18 of 68 f. Hypodermic syringes with needles, because of the possibility of an accidental needle puncture, continue to pose a health and safety threat both to contributors and to laboratory personnel.<br><br> Due to these health concerns, syringe evidence will only be accepted by the laboratory for biological testing when it is the only evidence in the case and with prior approval of the laboratory. g. Caution should be taken when interpreting the STR DNA results from touch evidence.<br><br> The STR DNA results cannot answer when or under what circumstances an individual may have used or touched an item of evidence. h. Processing of an item of evidence prior to submission should be avoided.<br><br> Processing chemicals may interfere with DNA testing and could lead to contamination which will negatively impact the evidence. 3. Collection and Submission of Buccal Swabs and Liquid Blood Samples for DNA Standards The laboratory should have standards from both the victim(s) and the subject(s).<br><br> Buccal swabs are the preferred standard, but samples of liquid blood collected in a purple-topped tube may also be used. Submit these with other evidence for comparison purposes. Samples may be obtained without consent from suspects by obtaining a court order, by use of a valid search warrant, or by a search incident to a lawful arrest ( Schmerber v.<br><br> California, 384 U.S. 757). Submit buccal cell swabs or liquid blood samples in all cases, even if another agency has performed examinations.<br><br> If there are any circumstances where a standard cannot be obtained, please contact the laboratory. For buccal cell swabs: a. Rub two to four sterile cotton swabs on the inside cheek and gum.<br><br> Air dry the swabs and then package in a sealed envelope. b. Label the envelope with the first and last name of the person from whom it was obtained, the initials of the person who collected the sample, and the date.<br><br> Forward the sealed envelope to the laboratory as soon as possible. c. The buccal cell samples do not need to be refrigerated during mailing.<br><br> Mail via priority mail according to U.S. postal regulations at the beginning of the week, if possible, to assure receipt by the laboratory the next day. For liquid blood standards: a.<br><br> A qualified clinical technician should collect approximately five milliliters of liquid blood and place the sample in a collection tube with a lavender or purple stopper. For a blood alcohol or drug test, refer to Section I: Toxicology for information on proper sample collection. b.<br><br> Label the vial with the first and last name of the person from whom it was drawn, the initials of the person who drew the blood, and the date. Seal the vial and forward to the laboratory as soon as possible. Page 19 of 68 c.<br><br> Refrigerate, do not freeze, liquid blood samples. Mail via priority mail according to U.S. postal regulations and mark container with the words, WARNING: Liquid blood inside, refrigerate upon arrival .<br><br> Mail at the beginning of the week, if possible, to assure receipt by the laboratory the next day. Blood samples need not be refrigerated during mailing. Refer to page 10 for instructions on packaging liquid blood samples.<br><br> 4. Collection and Submission of Bloodstain Evidence a. If there is liquid blood at a scene, e.g., a pool of blood on the floor, swab some of it on a sterile cotton swab, dry at room temperature, package in a paper bag, label, seal, and initial.<br><br> (Figure 5) . b. If there is suspected dried blood at the scene on an object that cannot be moved, photograph the object.<br><br> It is possible that the location, size, and appearance of the stain may be significant. The stain may then either be cut from the item, i.e., sofa cushion, or swabbed onto a sterile cotton swab slightly moistened with sterile water. Air dry the swab and package in a paper bag or envelope.<br><br> c. On items with smooth surfaces such as glass or metal that cannot be submitted to the laboratory, swab the suspected blood using a sterile cotton swab slightly moistened with sterile water. Air dry the swab and package in a paper bag or envelope.<br><br> d. Avoid processing items of evidence for latent prints before submitting them to the laboratory for biological testing. Latent print processing may interfere with subsequent biological examinations.<br><br> 5. Collection and Submission of Sexual Assault Evidence a. The victim of a sexual assault should be examined by medical personnel as soon as possible following the assault.<br><br> b. Submit vaginal specimens. Swabs should be made with sterile cotton applicators.<br><br> These must be air dried and properly marked. Please have hospital personnel collect four vaginal swabs. c.<br><br> Submit oral and/or anal swabs if indicated by circumstances of the case, or if the circumstances are uncertain. d. Submit a buccal cell swab.<br><br> Refer to Collection and Submission of Buccal Swabs and Liquid Blood Samples section on pages 19-20 for proper collection and submission procedures. These standards are for comparison purposes and should be submitted from both victim(s) and subject(s), if known. Victim standards are required for DNA analysis.<br><br> e. If contact such as kissing or biting has occurred, collect samples from the victim 9s body. Moisten sterile swabs slightly with sterile water and rub the suspected area(s).<br><br> Then rub the area with a dry swab. Package the swabs in envelopes after completely drying and label the swabs accordingly. f.<br><br> If suspected semen is found at the scene, collect it on sterile swabs, air dry it, and package. If the stain is on clothing or linens, air dry the items and package. If suspected semen is found at the scene on an object that cannot be moved, photograph the object.<br><br> Either cut the stain from the item, e.g., sofa cushion, or swab onto a sterile Page 20 of 68 cotton swab slightly moistened with sterile water. Air dry the swab and package it in a paper bag or envelope. DO 9S and DON 9TS Bloodstain evidence " DO air dry items, but keep from fans or extreme heat.<br><br> Fans may dislodge trace evidence. " DO submit entire item with suspected bloodstain to the laboratory, if at all possible. " DO obtain buccal cell swabs or liquid blood samples from all persons involved.<br><br> " DO refrigerate specimen(s) and mail at the beginning of the week. " DO mark outermost package with biohazard warning symbol and label. " DO package liquid blood samples separately and not with other items (clothing, bedding, etc.).<br><br> " DO package items separately in paper bags or envelopes. " DON 9T send partially dried objects as decomposition will occur. (See Figure 6).<br><br> " DON 9T attempt to remove stains from cloth. " DON 9T remove stains from small solid objects. " DON 9T mix separate dried stains.<br><br> Package each individual item in a paper bag or box, then seal and label. " DON 9T place evidence in trunk of car. Extreme heat may make blood unsuitable for testing.<br><br> " DON 9T collect buccal cell swabs as standards if the mixing of body fluids through such contact as intimate kissing has recently occurred. " DON 9T process an item for latent prints before requesting biological tests. " DON 9T freeze liquid blood standards.<br><br> Sexual Assault Evidence " DO have victim examined by medical personnel as soon as possible after the incident. " DO keep vaginal specimens refrigerated. " DO package clothes of subject and victim separately.<br><br> " DO mark the packaging with the biohazard symbol and label. " DON 9T send damp swabs, clothing, or bedding. Allow to air dry completely before packaging.<br><br> " DON 9T submit exhibits packaged in plastic bags. " DON 9T handle clothing or bedding unnecessarily. Page 21 of 68 Figure 5 4Correct Packaging of Biology (Serology and DNA) Evidence CORRECT: Biology (Serology and DNA) evidence submitted in paper packages will dry properly and be well preserved.<br><br> Figure 6 4Incorrect Packaging of Biology (Serology and DNA) Evidence INCORRECT: Biology (Serology and DNA) evidence submitted in plastic or other airtight containers will not dry properly, resulting in rapid deterioration of the stains. 6. Collection and Submission of Possible Saliva Stains a.<br><br> Possible saliva stains may be collected by rubbing the suspected area(s) with a sterile swab(s) moistened slightly with sterile water. Package the swab(s) in an envelope after Page 22 of 68 completely drying and label accordingly. Alternatively, the item of evidence may be submitted directly to the laboratory for touch evidence processing.<br><br> Air dry items of evidence as needed, then package in individual paper bags or envelopes, and submit. b. Cigarette butts from the same container may be packaged together.<br><br> Do not package the ashes. c. Based on the circumstances of the case, it is important to describe to the crime laboratory possible areas on an exhibit, e.g., right sleeve of shirt, where possible saliva stains may be present.<br><br> 7. Collection and Submission of Hair Evidence a. Remove visible hairs from the body or item with forceps and place in a paper fold, seal, and label.<br><br> b. Known buccal cells or blood can be used for comparison with unknown hairs. 8.<br><br> Collection of Tissue (including fetal tissue) and Bone for DNA Testing In certain cases, it may be necessary to submit tissue or bone for DNA analysis. In these instances, contact the Biology section supervisor in advance to insure proper collection, storage, and packaging of the evidence. a.<br><br> Submit bone and tissue samples for DNA analysis frozen in airtight plastic containers. b. The samples must be free of formaldehyde or formalin.<br><br> Presence of either of these chemicals negates any further DNA analysis. This includes fetal tissue samples. c.<br><br> Ship samples on dry ice overnight. 9. Collection of Touch Evidence a.<br><br> Touch evidence may be collected by rubbing the suspected area(s) on an item of evidence with a sterile swab(s) moistened slightly with sterile water. Package the swab(s) in an envelope after completely drying and label accordingly. Alternatively, the item of evidence (e.g.<br><br> gun, knife, steering wheel) may be submitted directly to the laboratory for touch evidence processing. b. When collecting touch DNA evidence, facial mask, gloves, hair covers, and disposable lab coats should be worn to prevent contamination.<br><br> Page 23 of 68 C. CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES Laboratory examination of evidence will determine the presence or absence of controlled substances the amount of controlled substance present as required by law or by special request 1. Case Acceptance Guidelines a.<br><br> Each exhibit must be marked with a unique exhibit number and initialed in an easily identifiable manner. b. Each exhibit must be packaged in an appropriately sized container.<br><br> The minimum size of the outer container is 4 ½ d X 7 d. c. All packaging that contains a suspected controlled substance must be separated for latent print requests prior to submission to the laboratory.<br><br> d. The name or names of all subjects must appear on the case tracking form. If there is more than one subject, evidence must be clearly associated with a particular subject.<br><br> e. Clearly mark probable cause exhibits on the case tracking form. f.<br><br> Only drugs and/or drug packaging will be accepted by the laboratory. Items with no probative value such as driver 9s licenses, rolling papers and lighters must be retained by the submitting agency. g.<br><br> Drug paraphernalia will not be accepted without prior approval of the chemistry section supervisor unless it is the only item in the case. Hypodermic syringes will not be accepted by the laboratory. Page 24 of 68 h.<br><br> Suspected cannabis exhibits with a total weight of less than 20 grams of plant material per subject will not be accepted without prior approval of the chemistry section supervisor. i. Only those items substantiating the highest penalty scheduled per F.S.<br><br> 893 will be analyzed. j. Clandestine laboratory evidence must have prior approval of the chemistry section supervisor to be accepted by the laboratory.<br><br> 2. Collection and Submission of Evidence a. If plastic packaging is used, it must be a commercial plastic bag with a minimum of 2.5 mil thickness or a glue sealed commercial evidence bag.<br><br> Paper bags and manila envelopes must have all seams properly sealed. b. Ensure that all plant material submissions are dry prior to being packaged.<br><br> Use paper bags or envelopes to prevent mold. Packaging wet or damp plant material can lead to evidence deterioration that may prevent testing. Allow wet plant material to air dry prior to packaging.<br><br> Dirt, growing media and plant containers should not be submitted. c. Package sharps in a puncture proof container.<br><br> d. Appropriately package fragile items to prevent breakage. e.<br><br> Do not submit field test kits. The kits can leak and compromise the integrity of the evidence. f.<br><br> Please advise the laboratory if any submitted items have been recovered from a body cavity and mark the contaminated evidence with the biohazard warning label and symbol. DO 9S and DON 9TS " DO completely dry all wet or freshly cut plant materials before packing. " DO separate latent fingerprint evidence (wrappings) from drug evidence before submission.<br><br> " DO package items for examination separately in appropriately sized containers and seal the outer container for the group of items to protect chain of custody. " DO package sharp objects in clearly labeled, puncture-proof packages. " DO attach the submission form to the outside of the sealed package to protect the chain of custody.<br><br> " DO advise the laboratory if any items being submitted have been recovered from a body cavity or may be contaminated with biological hazards. " DON 9T submit hypodermic syringes. " DON 9T use plastic bags for packaging wet or freshly cut plant materials.<br><br> They will mold. (Figure 8) " DON 9T submit extraneous items unnecessary for examination. Page 25 of 68 Figure 8 4Incorrect and Correct Method of Packaging Fresh Plant Material Place fresh plant material in a paper container after drying to prevent spoilage of the evidence.<br><br> D. DIGITAL and MULTIMEDIA EVIDENCE Digital Evidence Section Computers are commonly found at crime scenes and can often store vital evidence. Use caution in the collection of computer evidence due to the volatile nature of this technology.<br><br> Types of computer equipment and digital media examined by the FDLE laboratory include personal computers, various network systems, personal digital assistants (PDAs), cellular telephones, various floppy and removable disks, tapes, digital cameras, and other data storage media. Evidence contributors should contact the laboratory prior to submitting such items to verify acceptability. Do NOT examine the contents or files on the computer.<br><br> Doing so can and will jeopardize your case due to the changes made by the computer to the date and time stamps placed on computer files. The Digital Evidence (DE) laboratory sections can perform the following: Gain access to information stored on computers systems, media, and related items. This may include recovering passwords or circumventing schemes designed to prevent access.<br><br> Retrieve and preserve information from computers, media, or related items. Information may be in the form of documents, graphic illustrations, photographs, or video projections. Attempt to recover information that has been deleted, hidden, or encrypted.<br><br> Provide consultation to agencies regarding computer crimes and seizure techniques. Page 26 of 68 Provide training to agencies on crime scene processing of computers and other related topics. 1.<br><br> Collection of Computer Evidence a. Additional items are needed for the collection of computer evidence. The following items should be available at the crime scene.<br><br> long, narrow, stick-on labels blank disks (all sizes) envelopes and/or paper bags digital or still camera large plastic bags and/or boxes computer tool kit b. If the computer is on and you want to save information in memory but are not sure how to proceed, contact the DE Section for further assistance. If the computer has a modem or network connection (either internal or external), a communications line may be attached to the back of the computer.<br><br> Disconnect this line to prevent the deletion of data from a remote location. After the computer is turned off, disconnect the power cords. c.<br><br> If the computer is off, do not turn it on at the scene. d. If possible, photograph the front and back of the Central Processing Unit (CPU), monitor, and keyboard.<br><br> Many times passwords are written on or around the computer work area. Pay close attention and document any potential password information that is found. e.<br><br> Using adhesive labels, attach numbered labels to all cables and their associated connecting points, i.e., 1-1, 2-2, 3-3, etc. (Figure 9) . This includes monitor, keyboard, printer, mouse, and any other item that will be disconnected.<br><br> Label to simplify reconnecting the system in the laboratory. f. Disconnect all the cables from the computer and carefully place inside a large sealable plastic bag or cardboard box.<br><br> Seal item and label as fragile. g. Floppy diskettes and other removable media require special attention during the collection phase.<br><br> This media could be found in a variety of locations at a crime scene. Browse through manuals or other papers looking for diskettes. If practical, remove diskettes from manuals and note where found.<br><br> Diskettes should be separated from other items and treated as fragile. h. There are a number of different types of external drives.<br><br> If such drives use removable media, the media should be removed prior to packaging the drive for transporting. Removed media should be marked to indicate that it was removed from the drive. i.<br><br> Check with your local FDLE laboratory evidence section for an Electronic Evidence Submission Checklist. Having this checklist filled out by the investigator can assist the DE analyst in recovering pertinent data from the evidence. 2.<br><br> Packaging and Transporting Evidence a. Computers are delicate electronic equipment and must be protected from sudden shocks, dirt, magnetic fields, and other environmental factors. Computers should be secured in a way that prevents shifting during transport.<br><br> Page 27 of 68 b. If the original containers are available, use them for the packaging. If possible, package the computer in a box with Styrofoam or foam rubber padding to prevent shifting and damage.<br><br> Thicker plastic bags that are not easily ripped or torn are acceptable for package the computers and media. NOTE: All evidence to be submitted to the FDLE laboratory system for examination must be properly sealed before it will be accepted. c.<br><br> Normally, computer manuals require no special handling. However, if the manuals contain computer media, precautions used for computers also apply. Manuals should be sealed either in boxes, plastic bags, or paper bags.<br><br> d. CD and DVD discs should be placed in protective sleeves to prevent damage to the reflective film upon which the data resides e. All cables for PDA 9s, cell phones, cameras, laptops and other devices should be submitted with the evidence .<br><br> DO 9S and DON 9TS " DO call the Digital Evidence Section with any questions prior to or during the collection of computer evidence. " DO label and photograph all computer connections. " DO submit all operation manuals with the computer items whenever possible.<br><br> " DON 9T expose computers or magnetic media to large magnetic fields or rough handling. " DON 9T examine the contents or files on the computer. Page 28 of 68 Figure 9 4Computer Evidence Recovery Using labels to number cables and corresponding ports at the crime scene makes reconnecting the computer at the crime lab simple.<br><br> (1-1, 2-2, 3-3, etc.) Page 29 of 68 VIDEOTAPE ANALYSIS Video surveillance systems are commonplace. The videotape recording may be a valuable piece of evidence that can provide an eyewitness account during the commission of a crime. Not only may the actual crime scene be under surveillance but also adjacent areas may have had systems that provide overlapping fields of coverage.<br><br> Adjacent areas may provide video information that includes the suspect 9s or victim 9s routes of travel into the actual crime scene. The following steps are recommended for the preservation and collection of images from video surveillance systems. 1.<br><br> Collection and Submission of Evidence a. Determine all the locations of video surveillance systems in the crime scene and in adjacent areas. A neighborhood canvass may develop additional systems that are recording during the commission of the crime.<br><br> These additional systems may have recorded the victim 9s or subject 9s travel either to or from the actual crime scene. b. Treat the videotapes, CDs, and surveillance systems as evidence and maintain the chain of custody on the videotapes.<br><br> c. Determine if search warrants are needed for the seizure of the video tapes, CDs, and/or surveillance systems. d.<br><br> Include camera locations and the fields of view in the crime scene sketch. e. Take height measurements of reference objects within the camera 9s field of view.<br><br> f. If the surveillance system uses analog tape, do the following: 1. Stop the tape recorder but do not eject the cassette.<br><br> 2. Note the settings of the recorder 9s time display. 3.<br><br> Note the time on your watch or get an exact time from dispatch. 4. Note time discrepancies to other time keeping objects within the crime scene, i.e., cash registers, alarm systems, etc.<br><br> 5. Note the value of the counter display on the recorder. 6.<br><br> Rewind the tape and note the new counter display value. 7. Eject the tape and break the write protect tab.<br><br> 8. Note the make and model of the recording device and the time-lapse mode setting. 9.<br><br> Take the tape to another setting and make a copy of it. Do not use a home recorder for playing the tape as many video store rental tapes have excessive dirt and this will contaminate the video-recording head resulting in poor quality copies. Use the copy for viewing.<br><br> Pausing or slow motion playing will degrade the tape. 10. Time-lapse tapes are not viewable on standard videotape machines.<br><br> It may be necessary to make a copy by connecting to the original recording equipment. 11. Maintain the copy and submit the original tape and include a narrative report including analysis request to any FDLE laboratory for analysis.<br><br> The videotape will be forwarded to the appropriate laboratory for examination. g. If the surveillance system uses a digital media, contact the Tallahassee Crime Laboratory to determine what media or devices are needed in order to capture the video data segment.<br><br> Page 30 of 68 E. DNA DATABASE OVERVIEW The FDLE DNA Investigative Support Database was created by F.S. 943.325.<br><br> The law requires juvenile and adult offenders convicted of any felony offense or attempted offense to submit a biological specimen to the FDLE DNA Investigative Support Database. Sample collection is a responsibility shared by multiple agencies. As outlined in F.S.<br><br> 943.325, the Florida Department of Corrections is responsible for sample collection whenever the convicted person is committed to a Florida State Prison. The sheriff or officer in charge of the county correctional facility is responsible for collections whenever the convicted person is placed on probation, community control, or any other court-ordered supervision or form of supervised release or is committed to a county correctional facility. Upon receipt of the collection kits, the DNA samples are processed and analyzed.<br><br> The results of these analyses are entered into the state Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) database. Crime laboratories throughout the state may forward the results of DNA analyses performed on questioned samples from unresolved cases into the state CODIS database for comparison to convicted offender profiles. In the event of a hit, or match between a questioned sample and a convicted offender sample, the results will be reported to the crime laboratory submitting the questioned sample.<br><br> This provides probable cause to collect a sample (suspect standard) from the suspect. This standard is then examined by the crime laboratory which submitted the questioned sample in order to compare the suspect standard to the questioned sample. Samples from convicted offenders are not considered evidence and are not treated as evidence.<br><br> FDLE will retain convicted offender samples indefinitely to aid both future and past investigations. This also provides the ability to reanalyze samples as new DNA technologies are developed. FDLE supplies DNA Database Swab Collection Kits to all law enforcement or criminal justice agencies free of charge.<br><br> The kits are for collection of convicted offender specimens only. Do not use the kit to collect evidence such as a suspect, victim, or elimination standards in on-going investigations. Agencies may order the kits by telephone, fax, or email.<br><br> When collecting a convicted offender specimen, all available information must be included on the submission form before shipping to FDLE DNA Database. (Figure 10) Failure to include crucial information or fingerprints, or poor sample collection could prevent the sample from being entered into the DNA Database. If you have any questions, please contact the FDLE DNA Investigative Support Database in Tallahassee at 850-617-1300.<br><br> IMPORTANT NOTE Page 31 of 68 The DNA Database may NOT accept samples without legible inked thumbprints from the offender. Failure to include legible thumbprints on the submission form may result in destruction of the sample, which will require resubmission from the submitting agency. Note: An amputee may be precluded from thumbprint collection.<br><br> In this event, please use another digit if available and indicate the origin of the print. There are times when fingerprints are absolutely essential. For example, a match might occur between offenders who appear to have the same DNA profile, but different names.<br><br> This can easily occur when samples from the same individual are submitted twice over a period of time 4 once under an alias and once under a true name. All such occurrences to date have been resolved. They would have been extremely difficult to resolve, however, without the use of fingerprints.<br><br> 1. Collection and Submission of Convicted Offender Specimens a. Each Swab Collection Kit contains: 1 FTA Collection Card, 1 Sterile Cotton Tip Swab, and 1 Sterile Foam Tip Swab.<br><br> Collect all convicted offender specimens using this FDLE approved kit. b. To ensure proper specimen collection, follow the instruction printed on the Swab Collection Kit.<br><br> This includes providing all crucial offender information, clear and legible fingerprints, and swabbed material. The FTA card and both swabs should be returned back into the affixed envelope and sealed. c.<br><br> The entire kit should be mailed using the self-addressed envelope supplied in the Swab Collection Kit. d. Ship or deliver the collection kits to the FDLE DNA Investigative Support Database as soon as possible.<br><br> Prior to shipping, maintain completed collection kits in a cool, dry environment. Do not expose to extreme temperatures until the collection kits are shipped. e.<br><br> To determine if a biological specimen from an offender is already in the DNA Database, you may access the DNA Database Offender Search site located on the CJNet or contact the DNA Database at 850-617-1300, or by fax: 850-921-6086, or email: email@example.com . f. For additional information or questions, please contact the FDLE DNA Database section at 850-617-1300.<br><br> DO 9S and DON 9TS Page 32 of 68 " DO use the FDLE DNA Database-approved Swab Collection Kit. " DO send all convicted offender DNA specimens to the DNA Investigative Support Database. " DO include legible thumbprints on the submission form 3 this is required.<br><br> " DO call FDLE if you have any questions about proper specimen collection or to check if an offender DNA profile is already on file. " DO provide all crucial offender information on the collection kit before shipping. " DON 9T use the convicted offender Swab Collection Kit for the submission of evidence 3 doing so could jeopardize the integrity of your evidence submission.<br><br> Figure 10 4Request for DNA Database Entry Page 33 of 68 F. FIREARMS AND TOOL MARKS FIREARMS Many crimes of violence involve the use of firearms. The value of firearms and ammunition component evidence will depend to a significant degree on the recovery and submission techniques of the law enforcement investigator.<br><br> The laboratory can perform the following: examination of firearms for function and safety, including test firing in order to obtain test bullets, cartridge cases or shotshells comparison of evidence bullets, cartridge cases and shotshells to determine if they were or were not fired from/in the same unknown firearm comparison of fired bullets, cartridge cases, and shotshells with tests to determine if they were or were not fired from the suspect firearm examination of fired bullets and/or cartridge cases to determine the possible make and type of firearm involved imaging and comparing fired cartridge cases, shotshells, and tests from firearms to similar items recovered in unsolved crimes using the NIBIN system (see NIBIN section) examination of exhibits for the presence of gunpowder patterns and shot (pellet) spread to determine muzzle to entry distance restoration of obliterated serial numbers and other markings 1. Collection and Submission of Evidence a. Fired Bullets, Fragments, Pellets, and Wadding: The pathologist should not use forceps or other sharp instruments to remove bullets as they may further damage the evidence.<br><br> Gently rinse the bullets/fragments/pellets/wadding under running water and air dry them prior to packaging. Use a separate rigid container for each bullet. Pellets from the same area may be packaged in the same container.<br><br> If a projectile is embedded in wood or some other material, remove it exercising extreme care. If it cannot be removed without damaging it, then carefully cut out the whole area around it and submit to the laboratory with the projectile in place. Recover and submit as many bullets, fragments, pellets, and pieces of wadding as possible.<br><br> Do not clean or change the condition of items recovered from the scene. Investigators should not mark fired bullets, fragments, pellets, and wadding for identification because there is a danger of damaging individual characteristics. Package each item separately in an appropriate-sized, rigid container and label the container.<br><br> Pellets may be packaged together if they were found in the same place. Do not seal wet exhibits in plastic before they are thoroughly air dried. Do not use glass containers for the packaging of exhibits due to potential injury to personnel from breakage.<br><br> (Figure 11) b. Fired Cartridge Cases and Shotshells: Submit all fired cartridge cases and shotshells found. Place each exhibit in a suitable container and mark the container.<br><br> All exhibits may be placed inside a single outer package for ease of submission. Do not mark the shotshells. Seal them in appropriate containers and mark the containers.<br><br> c. Cartridges or Shotshells: Page 34 of 68 Collect from the crime scene any cartridges/shotshells of the same brand and type so that the laboratory can use them for testing and distance determinations. Cartridges/shotshells left at the scene by the suspect may display individual characteristics that could be matched to a suspect firearm.<br><br> Do not mark the cartridges or shotshells. Seal them in appropriate containers and mark the containers. Figure 11 4Fired Ammunition Components d.<br><br> Firearms: Record the condition of the firearm before you handle it, i.e., position of hammer, safety, slide, cylinder, jammed, etc. The primary concerns when packaging firearms are safety and the preservation of the evidence including blood, trace evidence, and latent prints that may be present. Handle the firearm carefully to avoid loss of trace evidence or latent prints.<br><br> Additionally, if DNA analysis is being requested, a facial mask and gloves should be worn while handling to prevent contamination. Do not clean, dry fire, test fire, take apart, or work the action, except to unload. Never place any object in the barrel (plastic tie straps used to show that the firearm is unloaded are the exception).<br><br> Unload carefully and record the position of the cartridges/shotshells as you remove them. Submit an unloading diagram of the gun. Any evidence with possible blood or body fluids should be air-dried, then packaged in cardboard boxes labeled with a cBIOHAZARD d label.<br><br> Revolver: Before opening the cylinder, mark each side of the cylinder at the top strap with a Sharpie pen, being careful not to destroy latent prints or trace evidence