What is Investigation?
- Investigation is a detailed or careful examination of a case. In other words, it is a systematic and thorough attempt to learn the facts about something complex or hidden. It is often formal and official.
- A criminal investigation is an undertaking that seeks, collects, and gathers evidence for a case or specific purpose. It specifically looks for clues and evidence to determine whether a crime has taken place.
- Likewise, a wildlife crime investigation is an undertaking that seeks, collects, and gathers evidence for a wildlife crime case.
An investigation may be proactive or reactive. The investigator may get information from various sources including reports from the public, reports from other law enforcement agencies, intelligence sources or results from a previous case. Once the investigator gets the information, he will make a preliminary inquiry from the available sources. This includes the person reporting the crime or the people in the area where the crime has taken place.
The investigator will then plan the investigation. He will decide which technique or techniques to use based on the nature of the crime and the place where the crime took place. The investigator will then plan the number of personnel needed to carry out the investigation and the equipment needed.
The investigator will then go to the crime scene and collect any evidence, data, information and clues relating to the crime. This includes interviewing witnesses and suspects, collecting evidence, taking photographs and sending evidence for expert analysis.
The investigator will then analyse all the information collected to see the broader spectrum of the crime and to see how each player including witnesses and suspects relate to the crime.
The investigator should then connect the dots and answer the following questions:
- What happened?
- When did it happen?
- Where did it happen?
- Who did it involve?
- Why did it happen?
- How did it happen?