Forensic Investigation with Ballistics & Photography (Wytheville, VA) June 12-16, 2023


With the cooperation of Wytheville Coummnity College (WCC Police Dept. Auxiliary) Sirchie is offering its comprehensive hands-on Forensic Investigation Training at Wytheville Community College (Grayson Hall, Rm 126), 1000 East main Street, Wytheville, VA 24382.

This 5-day course covers state-of-the-art methods of identifying, recording, processing and preserving various types of evidence found at the scene of the crime. The program is geared for Hands-on use of equipment, materials and supplies necessary for a thorough and comprehensive forensic investigation mission.


Forensic Investigation (Evidence Discovery, Collection, Processing & Preservation)

The goals and objectives of the Crime Scene Investigator is the collection, preservation, packaging, transportation, and documentation of physical evidence left at the crime scene.  With this evidence, a connection can be made between the victim, the scene, and the perpetrator of the crime. The base goal of this course is establishing methods and best practices for assessing, developing, collecting, and preserving the physical evidence.

Attendees learn proper set-up and crime scene documentation including photography and evidence marking / identification.  Through lecture and practical exercises, proper methods are taught for discovery and lifting of latent fingerprints using powders, applicators, tape, chemicals, and other tools.  Footprint and footwear evidence, often overlooked, is reviewed and methods for search and recovery are taught. Discovery and sampling of biological evidence, so critical in today’s forensic investigations for its DNA content, is reviewed with practical exercises with best practices for collection and preservation. Attendees also learn the proper packaging and preservation of various types of evidence, including bagging, boxing, labeling, and other methods. The course covers the forensic toolbox and the factors that lead to choosing certain methods.

  • Crime scene documentation:  photography, marking, logging
  • Evidence collection: types, proper packaging, documentation
  • Latent print development: fingerprint powders, applicators, chemicals, lifting devices
  • Biological fluids including blood: search, discovery, testing, sampling
  • Footwear impressions: search, development, collection


Ballistics, Trajectory, GSR & Firearms

Attendees receive instruction on the theory behind wound ballistics and the role that bullet mass, velocity, and kinetic energy play in creating temporary and permanent wound paths in tissue.  Medicolegal death investigation terminology will be stressed during this block of instruction so the attendee can correctly evaluate reports prepared by firearms experts, forensic pathologists, and forensic laboratory examiner-experts.

Attendees learn proper terminology and methodology for the investigation of shooting incidents.  Discussion of the use of gun shot reside tests as well as a practical exercise emphasizes the value of GSR to an investigation.  Methods for determining projectile size and bullet trajectory from entry angle are reviewed through practical exercises that allow the investigator to add firearm information as well as shooters position to the crime scene evidence.


Advanced Photography (Forensic Investigation Techniques including ALS, UV and IR)

Photography is used to document most crime scenes today, yet only the most basic techniques are sometimes utilized missing possible key evidence or not providing the true story of the crime scene or evidence.  Moving beyond this, attendees of this instruction module learn how to properly document in the preferred – manual mode, and learn to control the exposure triangle in various situations using techniques that reveal evidence once hidden.  Utilizing the triangle, dark scenes, shadows, and bright ambient light can all be overcome with specific techniques to show the scene as the investigator sees it.

Attendees through hands on exercises using DSLR cameras and various lenses combined with filters explore various lighting possibilities, using a variety of alternate light sources and filters to build contrast and reveal pattern evidence. Light sources outside the visible spectrum, such as ultra-violet and infrared, reveal body fluids and pattern evidence of gun shot residue and bodily fluids not visible to the naked eye. The camera is shown to be a tool to gather much more evidence than can be seen or documented with any other method.

Each student will receive a kit to use during hands-on exercises, and to keep.

OST250KIT Contents:
1- Perforated Notepad, 8 1/2” x 11”
1- Biofoam Impression Kit
5- Tissue Paper, #15 weight
1- Blood Evidence on Plywood
1- PIC001 Photo Scale/ID Card, 8 1/2” x 11”
1- Crime Scene Documentation Forms
2- 131WL1 Hinge Lifter, 2” x 4”, white
6- FC343 Reversible Backing Cards, 3” x 5”
2- Orange Evidence Marking Pointers
1- 101L Silk Black Fingerprint Powder, 2 oz.
1- 107L Copper Fingerprint Powder, 2 oz.
1- SB201L Silver/Black Fingerprint Powder, 2 oz.
1- M114L Black Magnetic Fingerprint Powder, 1 oz.
3- 122L Standard Fiberglass Brush
1- 123LW Marabou Feather Brush, white


1- 125L Magnetic Powder Applicator
1- 127LW Rubber/GEL Lifters, 2” x 4”, white, 12 ea.
1- 145L 1.5” Frosted Lifting Tape
4- Index cards, 3” x 5”
1- SBQ100 Fingerprint Lifting Squeegee
1- SNR100K Serial Number Restoration Kit
1- PPS800 Forensic L-Scale, 105mm x 105mm
1- PPS600 Reversible Forensic L-Scale, 300mm x 150mm
1- LTF200PR Zero Edge Protractor
1- Hemastix Blood ID Reagent Strips, 10 ea.
1- Toothbrush
1- Ballpoint Pen, black ink
1- #2 Pencil
2- Cotton Balls


2- Ziptop Bag, 9” x 12”
1- Orange Acrylic Square, 4” x 4”
1- 379M Attached case Magnifier
3- SDM100E Disposable Evidence Markers, inches
2- Wooden Paint Stirrers
3- Terry Cloth Towel
6- Cotton-Tipped Swabs
1- GLT101W GELifters, 5.2” x 7.2”, white, 10 each
1- HCB1002 Hard-Core Dental Stone, 2 lbs.
1- KCP247C Sterile Water, 3ml vial
1- OSTBK100 Blood Evidence Samples on paper
5- PBID1005 Blood ID Tests, Kastle Meyer Reagent
1- PBID2001 Blood ID Tests, McPhail’s Reagent
1- PSID1001 Seminal Fluid ID Test

Jim Harrington Associate Professor/Program Head

Administration of Justice/Corrections Science

WCC Police Dept. Auxiliary


Minimum enrollment will be 18 students with a maximum enrollment of 25 students. The cost per student is $650.00. All materials, supplies and equipment will be supplied by Sirchie. Students will be responsible for their own transportation and related per diem expenses. Individuals must register on-line no later than 5 days prior to the class, Sirchie reserves the right to cancel this class if the minimum number (18) students has not been met.

Special Instructions: Wytheville Community College is at the crossroads of I-81 and 77. There are 20 hotels/motels to pick from within a mile or so from Wytheville Community College. Many are within walking distance from the college. These are a few of the other hotels near the college - Tru by Hilton, Hampton Inn and Suites, and the County Inn and Suites. Right beside the college is the Fairfield Inn, Holiday Inn Express, and La Quinta hotels. Best- Bolling Wilson Hotel (great dinning) 170 East Main St. 276-223-2333.

Click on the thumbnail to download our 2022 Education & Training Guide.

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