The crime scene investigator’s job are done through methodical surveys on the affected area and by developing a plan of approach that would help solve the crime, while criminologist examines the criminal justice systems analysis by which accused persons are brought justice, seek to interpret the reasons for criminal behavior and recommend ways crime might be minimized. However, the biggest challenge of both crime scene investigator and criminologist is the application of scientific proficiency in evidence verification with the end goal of successful prosecution of the criminal offender in a court of law.
Jobs of a Crime Scene Investigator and a Criminologist
Both crime scene investigator and criminologist are considered the front liners of our criminal justice system. The biggest challenge of both jobs is the application of scientific proficiency in evidence verification with the end goal of successful prosecution of the criminal offender in a court of law. However, both jobs are accounted to different types of specialization in the said system. To be more specific, the crime scene investigator examines intricate crime scene investigation, which include sexual assaults, homicides, home invasions, armed robberies, and crimes against properties such as burglaries. It is estimated that 70 percent of the crime scene investigator’s time is spent transporting and packaging evidence; processing crime scenes; photographing and attending autopsies; and attending conferences and briefings with the police bureaus requesting assistance. While the remaining 30 percent is spent in court appearances; drafting investigation reports; instructing classes; undergoing continuing education; and maintaining equipments in good standards. Crime investigator is demanded to react to calls for crime scene services as expeditious as safety and good judgment allows. The said investigator processes scenes of significant crimes 24 hours a day and 7 days a week and under any weather conditions. Their investigations are done in methodical surveys on the affected area and by developing a plan of approach that would help solve the crime (Forensic, n.d.). They also provide direction and advice to case investigators in evidentiary and crime scene matters. Permanent records explaining the crime scene are established by crime scene investigator through written reports, preparation of precise diagrams and sketches, and application of expert photographic techniques (Forensic, n.d.).
Criminologist, on the other hand examines the criminal justice systems analysis by which accused persons are brought justice, seek to interpret the reasons for criminal behavior and recommend ways crime might be minimized. A criminologist may perform the following tasks: research the ways certain agencies of the criminal justice operate including the police service, courts of law, community-based and prison correction centers; interpret and analyze data received on the circumstances of crime and the process of the justice system; furnish information regarding crime and ways in which people are assisted by the criminal justice system; catalog data regarding the potential causes of crime and the crimes committed; collect crime statistics and generate ways in which crime solving assets can be best utilized; develop and analyze crime prevention systems; evaluate all components of crime and the criminal justice system; and study issues concerning crime victims, offenders and sentencing. They may work in legal sphere, in order to guarantee that laws keep up with society’s changes. Criminologist may also work in the psychological and social fields, which examine the effects of the criminal justice system or the components which augment individuals’ offending behavior.
The crime scene investigator must be skillful in reconstructing and reading the events as they materialized just before, during and immediately after the commission the crime in order to ascertain the sequence of events as well as asses the location and type of evidence of the said crime. The job not only requires a skill in writing detailed reports but as well as ability to observe small details of the crime scene and their meaning in connection to the evidence. On the other hand criminologist specializes in victimology, organizational, juvenile justice and corporate crime researches. Hence, criminologist is required to possess analytical proficiency; personal integrity; interest in human behavior, welfare and disadvantaged groups.
However, crime scene investigator and criminologist both assist officials of the criminal justice in processing criminal cases by personally preparing the cases or by providing sketches, photographs, and reports. Both are also expected to provide testimony in court as well as to analyze, retain, and preserve physical evidence collected in investigation of a crime and suspected criminals.
In general, criminologist’s main job is to study social and biological consequences as well as causes of crime and criminal behavior, particularly the effects of social environment and mental defects, while crime scene investigator’s main accountability is in processing crime scenes, particularly gathering of physical evidence and uses inductive and deductive reasoning to acquire knowledge of the events behind the particular crime.
Forensic Enterprises, Inc. (n.d.). Crime Scene Investigator. Retrieved July 28, 2008, from http://www.feinc.net/csi-desc.htm