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Skip to 0 minutes and 56 seconds [KNOCK, KNOCK] Come in. Hello, Gihan. I’m Natsumi. Thank you very much for taking your time. My pleasure. Please, make yourself comfortable. Take a seat. Really nice to meet you. So, welcome to the City of London Police. I’m the Head of Scenes of Crime here. I’m in charge of a team of seven scenes of crime officers, or crime scene examiners, as they like to be called. So, you cover all over London? We cover the one square mile - most of the financial hub, if you like, of the country. We’re very unique. We cover a very special demographic of people. We have a very large transient community that come in here to work. But our offices cover 24/7, 365 days a year.

Skip to 1 minute and 37 seconds But I guess you’re not always taking murder cases. No. No, not at all. Thankfully. It’s not that dangerous here. As long as there’s the potential to recover forensic evidence, we’ll go to it. So that could be burglaries, theft from motor vehicles, robberies, arsons, rapes. It doesn’t have to be murder. It’s not like the television. It’s not all glamorous. No. We have to be able to serve the public in whatever shape and form that may be. And you’re not forensic scientists? We’re not forensic scientists. Do you need forensic science knowledge to be a crime investigating officer?

Skip to 2 minutes and 11 seconds I think with the demand for jobs these days, it’s almost crucial that you have a forensic science background, whether it be through a degree, or any form of qualification. We as employers use that as a way of selecting potential applicants to come for interview. So, it’s definitely one where it’s something that’s of benefit. We’re, if you like, the evidence gatherers at crime scenes. We do all the field work. The other side of forensic science is the lab-based environment. They’re the scientists that recover, or retrieve, exhibits from ourselves that we submit, and they do the analysis and interpretation of stuff there. But we do a lot of stuff in-house, as well. We have a forensic enhancement laboratory here.

Skip to 2 minutes and 54 seconds We have a fingerprint bureau, with a team of experts, that will just painstakingly look and check all fingerprints that we may recover at crime scene as well. I see. Are you taking various cases simultaneously right now? We do. We do. There are a number of different jobs that often scenes of crime officers will go to. As they examine crime scenes and recover evidence, they will then send them off to the lab. Whilst we’re waiting for results, we’ll have more requests for service, more attendance of crime scenes and more evidence. [PHONE RINGING] Excuse me for one moment.

Skip to 3 minutes and 27 seconds Hello, Gihan speaking. Oh. Yes, hold on.

Skip to 3 minutes and 37 seconds OK. So, where are you guys at the moment?

Skip to 3 minutes and 42 seconds And what time was the body found?

Skip to 3 minutes and 48 seconds Has life been pronounced extinct?

Skip to 3 minutes and 52 seconds OK. And you’ve set up sufficient cordons?

Skip to 3 minutes and 59 seconds OK. We need to get a few more people down to that scene. Do you need any other specialist equipment? No. OK, listen. I need to make few phone calls to our force control room. I need to get a bit more information and try and gather a few more resources. If you just make sure that no one enters that crime scene at this moment, I’ll give you another call back with a follow up in about five to 10 minutes. OK. Thanks.

Skip to 4 minutes and 25 seconds Right, Natsumi. It looks like we’ve got to leave at this moment, because a body’s been found - Really? - with trauma injuries on the foreshore of the Thames. It was discovered this morning. We’ve got police personnel with them at the moment. Life has been pronounced extinct. So, it looks like we might be taking you to your first investigation. OK, I’m ready. Yeah? OK. Let’s go. We’re just going to get our coats. I’ve got to make a phone call to our force control room to get a bit more information. But we’ll meet downstairs, and I’ll take you there. OK. OK.

The first case

Follow Natsumi and work on your first case. You start your journey by meeting Gihan Lekamwattage, Crime Scene Manager, at the City of London Police Headquarters.

Meet the Head of Scenes, Gihan Lekamwattage, to discuss his role and how the police gather evidence for forensic analysis.

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The Science Behind Forensic Science

King's College London

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