This report utilizes a criminal case study from New York, where the majority of evidence was electronic, to identify the expertise of the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC)-Northeast and its Law Enforcement Analysis Facility (LEAF) in analyzing audio, video, and electronic evidence to assist the New York State Police investigators in solving the murder case.
In October 1999, a 48-year old woman from Poughkeepsie, NY, was murdered. Two issues complicated the solving of this case. First, it was a case of murder-for-hire which meant the mastermind was not immediately evident. Second, most of the hard evidence was electronic via cell phone calls, pager communications and e-mail correspondence. The New York State Police investigators turned to the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC)-Northeast and its Law Enforcement Analysis Facility (LEAF) for assistance. LEAF has expertise in analyzing audio, video, and electronic evidence. LEAF was able to prepare an easily understandable picture of the thousands of communications in the case. In addition, the Web Enabled Timeline Analysis System or WebTAS, developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory/Information Directorate in Rome, NY, developed a timeline for the case showing links among those involved. LEAF enabled investigators to better understand the links and helped the jury visualize the relationships between the people involved.
Date Published: January 1, 2002