US, Qatari partners participate in crime scene liaison exchange
By Senior Airman Kia Atkins, 379th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 14, 2015
AL UDEID AIR BASE, Qatar (AFNS) -- U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations Detachment 241 and members of the Qatar Ministry of Interior's Crime Scene Processing Unit participated in a crime scene liaison exchange program here, March 2 through March 6.
During the exchange, AFOSI agents and their Qatari counterparts shared crime scene investigation techniques to familiarize themselves with each other’s practices.
"Doing this preparation now allows us to process crime scenes quicker so that military commanders and senior leaders can make decisions about investigations and cases,” said Maj. Etai Shpak, the AFOSI Detachment 241 commander. “It also lets us know what they would need to do at a crime scene so that we can respect each other's procedures."
Throughout the week, AFOSI and their Qatari counterparts went over the techniques they use for lifting fingerprints, taking shoe or tire impressions, collecting DNA, analyzing blood spatter analysis, taking crime scene photography and what they do when they initially arrive at a crime scene.
“The main goal this week was to learn from each other in terms of processing a crime scene,” Shpak said. “Unfortunately, crimes do happen and when they do we need to be able to respond quickly so we can get the forensic evidence we need to collect from the scene for analysis.”
Although there were minor differences in how each country process crime scenes, sharing techniques and learning from each other helped both AFOSI agents and the Qatari Crime Scene Processing Unit members see the variances, so they could better process any crime scenes together in the future.
"We have a very good relationship for Qatar and America, working with them for business, for anything,” said Capt. Hassan Salem Al Dosari, the Qatar Ministry of Interior's Crime Scene Processing Unit flight commander. “It was a good experience, exchange for ideas, anything new in technology; it was very useful for us to see how we work together."
With the help of Qatari law enforcement personnel, AFOSI agents can more effectively process investigations.
“Working and preparing with our Qatari counterparts ahead of time allows us to work better alongside each other at a crime scene,” Shpak said. “This liaison exchange program isn’t about just bringing experts together to share their crime scene knowledge, but to also build relationships with our Qatari partners.”