2nd Edition

Death Scene Investigation Procedural Guide, Second Edition

By Michael S. Maloney Copyright 2018
    570 Pages 168 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    570 Pages 168 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Those tasked with investigating death scenes come from a variety of backgrounds and varying levels of experience. Whether a homicide detective, crime scene investigator, medico-legal death investigator, coroner or medical examiner, Death Scene Investigation: Procedural Guide, Second Edition provides the investigator best-practice techniques and procedures for almost any death scene imaginable, including for deaths occurring even under the most unusual of circumstances.

    This Second Edition is fully updated to include new coverage on shallow graves, human remains at crime scenes, poisonings, expanded coverage of projectile weapons, videography, touch DNA, death notifications, and a newly added chapter dedicated to sexual deaths. In addition, the book serves as an on-scene ready reference which includes instructions on procedure including the initial notification of a death, processing the scene and body, the investigator's role at autopsy, and analyzing the scene indicators to place evidence into context.

    Topics discussed include:

    • Initial response and scene evaluation
    • Death scene management including documentation, sketching, photography, videography, observations, and search procedures
    • A special death investigation matrix that walks the investigator though a decision tree to help in ambiguous deaths
    • Contains discussion of all manners of death, including accident, suicide, natural and homicide
    • Coverage of recovery of human remains from open field, aquatic, and buried sites including estimating the time of death.
    • Wound dynamics and mechanisms of injury that covers asphyxiation, sharp and blunt force trauma, chopping injuries; handgun, rifle, and shotgun wounds, electrical injuries, and more

    The bulleted format and spiral binding allows for easy use and reference in the field with sections that are self-contained and cross-referenced for quick searches. With its thorough and detailed approach, Death Scene Investigation, Second Edition will be a must-have addition to any crime scene and death investigator’s tool kit.

    Section 1: Death Scene Investigation 

    1. Death Scene Response 

    2. Natural Deaths 

    3. Accidental Deaths 

    4. Suicidal Deaths 

    5. Homicidal Deaths 

    Section 2: The Medicolegal Death Investigation 

    6. The Role of the Medicolegal Death Investigator 

    7. The Role of the Coroner 

    8. The Role of the Medical Examiner 

    9. Autopsy Protocol and the Investigator’s Role 

    Section 3: Recovery of Human Remains 

    10. Searching for Human Remains 

    11. Surface Recovery of Human Remains 

    12. Recovery of Buried Human Remains 

    13. Aquatic Recovery of Human Remains 

    14. Post Mortem Changes 

    Section 4: Wound Dynamics and Mechanisms of Injury 

    15. Asphyxiation 

    16. Sharp Force Injuries 

    17. Blunt Force Injuries 

    18. Chopping Injuries 

    19. Firearm Injuries – Rifle and Pistol 

    20. Firearm Injuries – Shotgun 

    21. Explosive Injuries 

    22. Thermal Injuries 

    23. Electrical Injuries 

    24. Poisoning 

    25. Drug Related Deaths 

    Section 5: Special Death Investigations 

    26. Infant Death 

    27. Child Deaths 

    28. Child Sexual Abduction and Murder 

    29. Sexual Activities Resulting in Death 

    30. Rape and Sexual Assault Resulting in Death 

    31. Multiple Victim Death Scenes 

    Section 6: Death Scene Management, Tasks and Responsibilities 

    32. Death Scene Management 

    33. Death Scene Sketching 

    34. Death Scene Photography 

    35. Death Scene Videography 

    36. Death Scene Notes and Observation 

    Section 7: Death Scene Evidence Processing 

    37. Documenting and Processing Bloodstain Patterns at the Scene 

    38. Documenting and Processing the Shooting Scene 

    39. Documenting and Processing the Post Blast Scene 

    40. Entomological Evidence 

    41. Biological Evidence 

    42. Trace Evidence 

    43. Friction Ridge Evidence 

    44. Impression Evidence 

    Section 8: Death Investigation Checklist 

    Appendix A: Bloodborne Pathogens 

    Appendix B: Bloodstain Pattern Decision Matrix 

    Appendix C: Druggust Fold


    Michael Maloney is an Independent Forensic Consultant, Trainer and Author. He holds a Master of Forensic Science Degree from George Washington University with a Fellowship in Forensic Medicine the Office of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. He has 20 years experience as a Special Agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) and Senior Instructor-Federal Law Enforcement Training Center for Death Investigations and Sex Crimes. He is the author of Death Scene Investigation: Procedural Guide and Crime Scene Investigation: Procedural Guide from CRC Press.