When I first wrote ‘Professional Locate Investigations’ (www.ProfessionalLocateInvestigations.com) it was intended to be a guide to one of the most common tasks of all private investigators – locating people. Several years later we decided an updated edition was needed to fill in some gaps and update some information to be more current. In the investigative world being current is important, but keeping resources current is a daunting task. That is one reason we value trade magazines, trade blogs and other sources by fellow professionals. The new edition was revamped and designed to demonstrate the similarities of locate investigations, background checks and assets & liabilities checks. Full investigations, more than just gathering records, most often follows – but you have to start with the records.
It is not often you find a smoking gun, but if you don’t look you will have neglected the opportunity to find out. Recently we were involved in two specific cases in which thinking outside the box and one question opened the flood gates – one of domestic relations fraud and the other criminal defense.
In the domestic case there came to question the background of the opposing party. This was particularly after it was reported to us that he was promoting a work ethic that had not existed for over a decade due to a disability. The party also posted a photograph and name of a girlfriend. It was quickly determined the post was a ruse, as the ‘girlfriend’ was quickly determined to be a neighbor and married. In the background of the photograph was a sign that had a banner of the local festival. A quick search of the festival social networking page found several short videos – one of which has the opposing party dancing without any difficulty or aid for mobility or balance. Also in this domestic case was provided a military discharge paper – known as a DD214. These are often recorded at the local Clerk & Recorders office, but are most often no longer public record. However, there is a manner in which to obtain copies of military records subject to public release (see our commentary at http://www.deathcasereview.com/1/post/2014/11/requesting-military-records.html). The DD214 listed an Honorable discharge with full veterans benefits, but the dates of service had gaps and presented questions. The records were requested and received after a long delay (months). The records presented that the person was discharged after being convicted of Absent Without Leave (AWOL) and negotiated the Honorable discharge.
In the criminal case there began to be questions as to the veracity of the reporting victim’s events and timeline. Some allegations became more severe and also more frequent with each interview by law enforcement. It was time to begin thinking outside the box. Please go to “Advantages of Social Media Sites” at http://www.deathcasereview.com/afi-llc-blog/advantages-of-social-media-sites for Karen’s commentary on this strategy.
These examples point out the necessity of complete backgrounds – thinking outside the box and keeping up with the resources available to us. If something is outside the area of knowledge and experience, contact a colleague appropriate for the assignment. It will not only make you look good, but will further the legal strategies and potential outcome for your client. Together We’re Better!
Dean A. Beers, CLI, CCDI and Karen S. Beers, BSW, CCDI
Cheyenne WY Licensed Private Investigators (No. OL-15-31146)
Board Certified Legal Investigator / Expert Consultant (national)
Board Certified Criminal Defense Investigators
Certified in Medicolegal Death Investigations / former Deputy Coroners
Associates in Forensic Investigations, LLC
A Rocky Mountain West Agency
Expert Consultants and Legal Investigators
Personal Injury, Negligence & Death in Civil, Criminal and Probate Litigation
www.DeathCaseReview.com ~ associates@DeathCaseReview.com
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'Quaero Indicium' - To Find The Evidence
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