Author Guest Post
When is a Crime Scene Staged?
For anyone who loves writing murder mysteries or reading them. Have you ever wondered when is a crime scene staged? There are many reasons.
The most difficult task is to recognize some of the subtle appearances to indicate that a crime scene has been staged. Fires are an example of a type of potential staged crime scene; it’s usually to cover up a previous crime that had been committed such as murder or insurance purposes for profit.
Every detective or forensic investigator must use their own subjective skills along with experience to determine if a crime scene has been staged. It’s important to preserve all evidence and document everything in proper order. Notes, sketches, and photographs are extremely helpful to help determine staged crime scenes.
These signs from burglary and/or homicide investigations should alert detectives that something is potentially suspicious:
• No sign of a forced entry
• Forced entry is clearly evident
• No search for any valuables is apparent
• No items have been stolen
• Only one particular item has been stolen
• Drawers have been pulled out and dumped to make it look like a “ransacked” (out of ordinary) appearance
• Drawers have been pulled out carefully and neatly stacked in order to protect certain items
• The victim had life insurance
• Victim’s death was profitable for family members other than life insurance
To simply illustrate what a staged crime looks like, investigators must look for any evidence that appears as if it doesn’t belong.
Points of Entry
This is the most common staged crime scene element, usually an open or broken window. Examine these areas closely and determine whether or not it’s plausible or if there are other trace evidence such as blood, fingerprints, broken glass, etc.
Weapons Left or Removed
A firearm is the most common staged crime scene weapon. Was this weapon left initially? Did it cause the injury? What’s its purpose?
Movement of Body
One of the least common staged elements is the movement of the body to a secondary crime scene. Examine the clothing, shoes, bloodstains, and hair of the victim to determine if the body has been moved and why. Rigor mortis (stiffening of joints), livor mortis (pooling of blood), blood and trace evidence, along with any type of drag marks can help assist the investigator to determine if the body has been moved.
About The Author
Her latest book is the mystery suspense, Body of the Crime.
Author Amazon Page
Body of the Crime by Jennifer Chase
Book 1: Chip Palmer Forensic Mystery Series
Publisher: JEC Press
Publication Date: May 20, 2016
Format: eBook - 397 pages
Kindle - 1230 KB
ASIN: B01FZREEF4Genre: Mystery / Suspense / Thriller
Amazon - Free on Kindle Unlimited
Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Pump Up Your Book Virtual Book Publicity Tours.
Three grisly murders linked to five old cold cases, dubbed the Flower Girl Murders, pushes detectives to their limit to find a clever and extremely brutal serial killer, leaving a California town demanding justice. The District Attorney’s Serial Special Task Force retains the help of the reclusive Dr. Chip Palmer, a forensic expert and criminal profiler, to steer them in the right direction.
Palmer is known for his astute academic interpretations of serial and predatory crimes, along with his unconventional tactics that goes against general police procedures. He is partnered with the tough and beautiful D.A. Inspector Kate Rawlins, a homicide detective transplanted from Phoenix, and the chemistry ignites between the team—turbulent and deadly.
The Flower Girl Murders leaves three homicides, five cold cases, two seasoned detectives, three suspects, and one serial killer calling all the shots. The investigation must rely on one eccentric forensic scientist to unravel the clues to solve the case. But at what cost?
My Book Review:
In Body of the Crime, Dr. Chip Palmer, a forensic expert and criminal profiler is brought in to help the District Attorney’s Serial Special Task Force investigate three murders with possible ties to a series of five cold case serial killings dubbed the Flower Girl Murders. Chip is partnered with D.A. Inspector Kate Rawlins, a homicide detective transplanted from Phoenix, to solve the murders and bring justice that the Monterey County community is demanding.
Body of the Crime is a fast-paced chilling mystery suspense thriller that will captivate the reader's attention and leave them sitting on the edge of their seat. The author weaves a complex and multi-storyline tale that is well written and interspersed with a first-person narrative from the Flower Girl serial killer that is very intriguing and keeps the reader guessing what will happen next with every clue and gripping twist and turn. The attention to detail in regard to the criminal investigation is first rate, the author utilizes her experience in the criminology and forensic areas to provide a story that diehard crime thriller fans crave. The characters are realistic, their complex personalities and interactions with each other gave the story depth and made it that much more powerful and compelling. I loved Chip and Kate's characters, their strong personalities and dedication to solving the serial killings had me cheering for them as the investigation progressed.
As a fan of mystery suspense thrillers, Body of the Crime satisfied everything that I expect to find in a really good suspense thriller. It gave me goosebumps, it made me gasp and cringe, it made me hold my breath, and most importantly it drew me into the investigations along with Chip and Kate, and left me wanting more. I look forward to reading the next installment of the Chip Palmer Forensic Mystery Series!
RATING: 5 STARS
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