Utah Department of Public Safety

POST - Crime Scene Specialist (Basic)

Crime Scene Specialist (Basic)


The Crime Scene Specialist Class is an entry-level course designed to provide the new investigator with correct tools to become familiar with the evaluation, preservation, documentation and collection of commonly encountered physical evidence types. If the student does well in the class and continues to practice these skill sets upon graduation, then they can expect to develop proficiency in crime scene processing.


Since the majority of crime scene work is documentation, this is the focus of the course. As such, the student will be required to bring their own SLR camera, tripod and flash with all necessary attachments. (e.g., sync cord, extra batteries, macro lens, etc…) However, the class does not teach entry-level camera use. We use the Nikon D70, and while most cameras are similar, they are different, and we cannot be expected to know everything about every camera.   Hence, the student should be very familiar with their camera, its settings and attachments.  


It is recommended that a basic photography course be taken prior to attempting this class. It is further recommended that a student bring a digital SLR camera and laptop to this course to aid in the rapid review and verification of photographs.


Minimum Passing Grade:

There are four written examinations, which are given at the start of each class (0800) in the morning. The student must have a cumulative score of 70% or higher to pass the class and receive credit. There are multiple lab exercises that the student must complete and have instructor verification (signoff). At the end of this course (Friday) the students will assemble into four teams and each team will process a mock crime scene, demonstrating the skills that they have learned and practiced during the week.


Student Expectations:

The student should plan on being very busy and adjust their work schedule to compensate for this class. To do well on the written test, each student will need to study an average of 1-2 hours each night (plus plan on one [night] photography shoot during the week). Optionally, the student may want to practice after class time some of the skills that they learned during the day. This will help the crime scene practical go smoother and lessen the student's anxieties. Remember to have fun and take full advantage of this time to ask questions of the experts teaching this class and practice your newly learned techniques.



Utah BFS Personnel


Utah Bureau of Forensic Services
4501 South 2700 West
Salt Lake City, UT 84119

Phone: Lab – 801-393-4549

Fax – 801-393-4574
Email -

Class to be taught at:  SLCC Criminal Justice Lab (POST Building) 410 W. 9800 S., Sandy, UT

  • Schedule:  May 4-8, 2015
    8:15-9:45 Crime Scene Management
    10:00 -12:00 Note taking and Sketching and Exercises
    1:00 – 5:00 Collection/Preservation of Physical Evidence (Packaging, Trace, Blood [KM and swabbing], Documentation and collection of firearms and Exercises
    8:00 – 8:30 Exam
    8:30 – 12:00 Camera Basics and Lab Exercises
    1:00—5:00 Crime Scene Photography and Exercises
    8:00 – 8:30 Exam
    8:30 – 9:30 Review of Photos w/ Class
    9:45 – 10:45 Paint
    10:45 – 12:00 Fire Debris
    1:00 – 1:45 Fibers
    1:45 – 5:00 Bloodstain Patterns (Documentation, Photography, etc.) and Exercises
    8:00 – 8:30 Exam
    8:30 – 9:30 Fingerprints
    09:45 – 10:45 Physical Development and Lifting of Fingerprints
    10:45 – 12:00 Fingerprint Lab
    1:00 – 5:00 Footwear/Tire and Exercises
    8:00 – 8:30 Exam
    8:30 – 2:00 Crime Scene Practical
    2:00 – 5:00Crime Scene Practical Presentations and Reviews

Student Notes:
Cost for course to cover materials is $250.00 payable to Utah Bureau of Forensic Services prior to the first day of class. If you register for both the Basic and Advanced Classes in advance you will receive a discount and can attend both classes for $400.00.

For RSVP, payment and general class information please contact Bo Smith at bosmith@utah.gov or 801-393-4549.




1. Submittal of an application and materials fee.
2. A willingness to devote the entire week to the study of crime scene processing is imperative. There is very little resource for makeups, so the student should plan on being at the class for the entire week.
3. A camera (SLR) – not a point and shoot.


Max enrollment: (16)

Utah Bureau of Forensic Services


Crime Scene Specialist Training

Basic and Advanced Crime Scene Registration




Contact Information

Email________________________________                  Phone number __________________________


Please Check Applicable Class(s)

_____ Basic    May 4-8, 2015

_____ Advanced   May 18-22, 2015


The cost of the class is $250.00 each or $400.00 for both.  Please send check to:


Department of Public Safety

Utah Bureau of Forensic Services, 2nd Floor

4501 South 2700 West

Salt Lake City, UT 84119



Course Dates Location TIme Status
May 4-8, 2015 POST SLCC  Miller Campus/ Lab Public Safety Education & Training Center
410 West 9800 South, Sandy
0800 Open




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Last updated: January 22, 2015

[Last Update - 01/22/15Thursday, 19-Feb-2015 17:40:02 MST]