Kaplan University CJ210-05
November 24, 2011
Professor Ron Reinhardt
Criminal investigation as defined by Encyclopedia Britannica (2011) is an “ensemble of methods by which crimes are studied and criminals apprehended.” The methods used determine the success or failure of solving a case. Any method of inquiry should be able to answer who, what, when, where, why, and how. In a criminal investigation, answering these questions can be done using a combination of different forms of inquiry. Some of the forms are induction, deduction, classification, analysis, and at times hypothesis. Using any method, a criminal investigator begins reconstructing the criminal activity in an attempt to capture the perpetrator(s). The induction method allows the investigator to rely on observation and experiences to draw a conclusion. Using the deduction method, the investigator is able to eliminate suspects; this can be done by validating alibis, line-ups, and the use of DNA evidence. Other times classification is used by arrangement based on characteristics and traits. Many times an investigation is stated with an analysis and is broken down into separate parts to help solve the case. In conjunction with analysis, a hypothesis is introduced. This also assists by assumptions based on knowledge, experience, and observations to successfully close the investigation (Osterburg & Ward, 2010). To be a successful investigator, one needs to have an optimal mindset. This is the manner in which the investigator processes the investigation. Some attributes are natural, others need to be learned. Regardless of how one possesses them, they are vital for success. The attributes needed are intelligence, reasonability, curiousness, and imagination. One also must be CRIMINIAL INVESTIGATION3
observant, have a good memory, be...