KAJIADO, Kenya, Apr 8- Images of police carelessly handling a crime scene and potentially destroying crucial evidence have always elicited a sharp debate among Kenyans, but this might be a thing of the past.
This is after the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU), in partnership with various stakeholders drawn from media and police, developed guidelines on crime scene management.
The guidelines are meant to fill in the knowledge gap among the first responders of a crime scene and the police and crime journalists.
It is a crucial process that the Directorate of Criminal Investigations Head of Training Gideon Kibunja said determines the successes or otherwise of many criminal investigations.
“The first persons at a scene of crime often have serious effects on crime scenes depending on their awareness on what and what not to do,” he said during a validation workshop on the guidelines in Kajiado.
Among the stakeholders attending the validation workshop were representatives of the Crime Journalists Association of Kenya (CJAK).
IMLU intends to also engage the public members on their role in crime scene management to ensure justice is delivered.
One such way, IMLU Programme Coordinator Carol Tunnen said, will be through the development of posters and brochures to empower them so that they don’t tamper with crime scenes but instead preserve them for qualified personnel to process them professionally.
Also, to be trained are the regular and Administration police officers on their role, before Crime Scene Investigation experts from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations arrive at any scene.
“Their potential to contaminate crime scenes as a result of lack of requisite skills cannot be ignored,” Kibunjah said.
He noted that “this can be avoided if the materials we are validating today can be shared among all police training institutions, police stations, camps and posts as learning aids. Armed with these materials, I am confident that together, we can all ensure that every crime scene is professionally and effectively managed to ensure that justice is served.”
Thousands of learning materials are set to be printed out and distributed across the country.
The article was first published on https://shahidinews.co.ke/2021/04/08/spot-police-mishandle-a-crime-scene-imlu-guidelines-to-address-the-gaps/