Criminal Investigation on the Street  book cover
1st Edition

Criminal Investigation on the Street

ISBN 9781138220898
Published October 29, 2021 by Routledge
706 Pages 321 Color Illustrations

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Book Description

Criminal Investigation on the Street presents investigative principles and techniques—and applies them to solving real-world crimes—in an engaging, student-friendly style centered on the Investigative Triangle: legal aspects, evidence, and behavioral analysis.

Students and instructors alike will benefit from this book’s comprehensive coverage and accessible writing style. Along with the Investigative Triangle model, which provides a solid framework for approaching investigations, students will also learn about Criminal Investigative Analysis, a range of behavior-based services and strategies to help solve crimes. Chapters 1–7 (Section I) present the principles and techniques of criminal investigation—history and theory, legal background, forensics, crime scene, witnesses and informants, interviews and interrogations—including a chapter on crime analysis and Criminal Investigative Analysis. Chapters 8–13 (Section II) apply these principles and techniques to specific types of crime, beginning with assault and death investigations and a separate chapter on culpable homicide. Section II also covers sex crimes; theft, burglary, robbery, and arson; enterprise and white-collar crime, and terrorism. The book is illustrated throughout with a variety of Exhibits: photographs and drawings, flowcharts, facsimiles of police documents, and other instructive visuals. Each chapter begins with an engaging vignette, some based on high-profile news articles and others drawn from the author’s extensive experience. Interactive features—Case Focus, You Call It, and You Write It—occur at strategic points in every chapter, challenging students to answer questions and apply concepts to actual cases and fictional scenarios. Each chapter ends with a return to the Investigative Triangle, assessing how it applies to the chapter’s main topics. Chapters 1–7 (Section I) each include a list of Important Cases (court decisions relevant to the chapter’s key concepts). At the end of every chapter (Sections I and II), the Investigate Further feature provides an annotated list of readings, films, and other resources appropriate for class projects, term papers, and special assignments. Each chapter concludes with review questions and a chapter summary.

This book is geared to students in the Criminal Investigation course at both two- and four-year institutions, and will appeal to those aspiring to a career in any field related to criminal investigation.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1: Origins and Principles of Criminal Investigation

Principles of Criminal Investigation

Criminal Investigation Defined

The Art and Science of Criminal Investigation

Origins of Criminal Investigation

Historical Development of Criminal Investigation

Historical Development of Identification Systems

Trends in Criminal Investigation Today

Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS)

DNA Profiling

Biometric Recognition

FBI/Canadian Investigative Model

Criminal Investigative Analysis

Careers in Criminal investigation

Where Are We Headed?

Chapter 2: Legal Aspects of Criminal Investigation

Sources of Law

U.S. Constitution

Statutory Law

Common Law

Administrative Law

Courts and Proof Standards

Dual Court System

Proof Standards

Criminal Investigative Analysis: A Useful Instrument

Arrest, Search and Seizure

Criminal Liability




Rules of Evidence

What Is Evidence?

Rules of Exclusion

Handling of Evidence

Courtroom Testimony and Demeanor

Quality of Reports

Testimony Credibility

Chapter 3: Forensics

What Is Forensic Science?

Forensics and Criminalistics

Forensic Science and Criminal Investigative Analysis

Strengths and Weaknesses of Forensic Science

Key Concepts in Forensic Science

Locard’s Exchange Principle

Inclusiveness Doctrine

Occam’s Razor

Specialties in Forensic Science

Biological Sciences

Physical Sciences

"Soft" Sciences

Applied Sciences

Forensic Evidence

Class, Individual, and Trace Evidence

Types of Physical Evidence

Documenting Forensic Evidence

Chapter 4: The Crime Scene

Crime Scene Investigation

Crime Scene Defined

Inductive and Deductive Reasoning

Crime Scene Control and Maintenance

Investigator Role and Responsibilities

Phases of Investigation

Preliminary Investigation

Follow-Up Investigation

Crime Scene Security and Search

Protection and Security

Exchange and Inclusiveness

Search Techniques

Crime Scene Documentation

Field Notes

Photography and Videography

Crime Scene Sketch

Crime Scene Evidence in the Justice System

Chapter 5: Witnesses, Informants, and Related Sources of Information

Witnesses and Suspects

Who Is a Witness?

Victims and Victimology

Neighborhood Canvass

Motive and Modus Operandi (M.O.)

Reliability and Corroboration

Eyewitness Identification methods


Forensic Artists and Composite Kits

Investigative Hypnosis


Voice Stress Analysis and Other "Lie Detectors"


Informant Motivations

Guidelines for Dealing with Informants

The Confidential Informant


Surveillance Purposes and Methods

Legal Issues in Surveillance

Information from Records

Law Enforcement Records

Public and Private Organizations

Chapter 6: Interviewing and Interrogation (I&I)


Listening and Other Interview Skills

Witnesses and Other Interviewees

Interview Planning, Timing, and Location

Interview Procedure

Documenting the Interview


Legalities of Interrogation

Admissibility of I&I in Court

Conducting Interrogations

Planning and Timing

Setting and Propping

Confessions and Admissions

Truth, Deception, and Trickery in I&I

Truth of Falsehood?

Statement Analysis

Trickery as an Interrogation Technique

Chapter 7: Crime Analysis and Criminal Investigative Analysis

Crime Analysis: Background and Process

Information Intake

Sorting and Collating

Analysis and Interpretation

Communicating and Disseminating

Investigative Application

The Crime Analysis Toolbox

Telephone Record Analysis

Timeline Flow Charts

Relational Database Analysis

Crime Bulletins

Crime Records

Computer-Aided Dispatch

What Is Criminal Investigative Analysis?

An Early Case of Unknown Subject Profiling: The "Mad Bomber"

Criminal Investigative Analysis Evolves

Criminal Investigative Analysis Training

Profile of a Killer

Criminal Investigative Analysis in Practice

Profile Applied to Serial Arsonist

Profile Applied to Aged Forensic Likeness

Reexamining the Texas Seven

Geographic Profiling

How Accurate Is Criminal Investigative Analysis?


Chapter 8: Assault and Death Investigations

Assault Investigations

Defining Assault


Identifying the Offender

Intent and Other Legal Defenses

Death Investigations

Statistics on Death in the United States

Manner, Cause, and Mechanism of Death

Accident, Suicide, or Homicide

Equivocal Death Investigation

Who Was the Deceased? Identifying and Describing the Victim

Identification: Positive and Presumptive

Positive Identification Protocols

Chapter 9: Culpable Homicide Investigations

Culpable Homicide

Homicide Versus Murder

Solving a Homicide Case

Motives and Types of Murder

Victim Background Assessment (Victimology)

Habits, Behaviors, Routines, and Characteristics

Behavioral Risk Factors

Recent Activities and Known Associates

Death Scene Evidence: The Body

Finding and Excavating the Body

Time Since Death

Wounds and Injuries

Position of the Body

Autopsy Findings

Death Scene Evidence Other Than the Body

Blood Evidence

Trace Evidence

Weapons and Other Objects

Direct Attacks and Overkill

Staged and Posed Crime Scenes

Timing and Coordinating the Death Investigation

Chapter 10: Sex Crimes

Sex Crime Categories

Has a Crime Occurred?

Basic Injury: Rape and Other Sex Offenses


Sex Crimes Against Children

Collecting and Analyzing Physical Evidence

Crime Scene

Items Left by the Offender

Victim’s Physical Body

Interviewing Victims, Witnesses, and Others

Victim Interviews

Witness Interviews

Interviewing Children

False Allegations

Investigation Mechanics, Profiling, and Typologies

Conducting the Investigation

Criminal Investigative Analysis (CIA) of Unknown Sexual Offender

FBI Profiling

American Psychiatric Association Diagnoses

Rapist Typologies

Investigative Synthesis

Chapter 11: Theft, Burglary, Robbery, and Arson


Theft of Tangible Property

Theft of Intangibles


Burglar Typology

Evidence in Burglary Investigations

The Human Element in Burglary Investigations

Robbery and Home Invasions

Types of Robbery

Home Invasion Crimes

Investigating Robbery and Home Invasion

Arson and Bombing

Fire Investigation

Evidence in Fires

Bombs and Explosions

Motive and Profiling of Arsonists

Chapter 12: Enterprise Crime

Defining Enterprise Crime

Extent of the Problem

The Mafia: A Classic Example of a Criminal Enterprise

Criminal Enterprise Groups

Organization and Structure


Goals of the Criminal Enterprise

Types of Criminal Enterprises

Nationality or Ethnicity


Drug Trafficking

Human Trafficking

Counterfeiting and Money Laundering

Insider Trading and Other White-Collar Crime

Public Corruption

Investigative Techniques and Resources

Organizations Dedicated to Law Enforcement and Investigation

Legal Resources

Covert Operations and Informants

Chapter 13: Terrorism

What Is Terrorism?

Defining Terrorism

Terrorism’s Aims

The Scope of the Problem

Classifying Terrorism

Types of Terrorism

Anti-Abortion Extremism



Ecoterrorism and Agroterrorism


Nuclear Terrorism

White Supremacist Terrorism

Combatting Terrorism Proactively

Intelligence and Evidence Gathering

Successful Proactive Investigations

U.S. Counterterrorism Resources

Citizens’ Rights in a Free Society

International Investigations

Investigating Terrorist Incidents After the Fact

Gathering and Documenting Evidence

Bringing Terrorists to Justice


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G. W. Hildebrand draws upon decades of investigative experience as a state police officer and Texas Ranger. Having worked, analyzed, assisted at, or studied over 3,000 violent crime scenes in a 40-year career, he has gained specialized insight into criminal behavior and investigative principles and techniques as they apply to real-world circumstances.

His extensive experience as a full fellow in the International Criminal Investigative Analysis Fellowship (ICIAF) and training with the FBI Behavioral Science Unit add a unique dimension to this book. As an instructor and department chair in a large community college, Prof. Hildebrand is well acquainted with what students need to be engaged in this topic and to grasp the material more readily. He developed, implemented, and maintains one of the best Academic Police Academy programs in his state, and has oversight and training responsibilities of students who qualify to sit for state law enforcement licensing examinations. His approach to crime solutions involves a combination of forensic evidence, criminal behavioral analysis, and various investigative techniques.


"...[I]t’s great to see the topic of profiling not only present but broken down in a way that can be understood by undergraduate students."

Michelle Rippy, California State University – East Bay

"The overall presentation of material, with a distinct separation of practical investigative skills (Section I) from cases (Section II), is an excellent approach to teaching the overall subject of criminal investigation. The active learning exercises are well developed and applied at key points in each chapter. That, in conjunction with content that is accurate and well supported, makes this text a valuable teaching and reference tool."

Frank Dufon, University of West Florida (retired)

"[C]oncise, readable, and teachable."

Monica Hack-Polkosnik, Herkimer College