OverviewThe Investigations Division is comprised of Detectives, Special Operations Unit, Major Accident Investigations Team, Forensics, Crime Scene Technicians, Auxiliary Police, Sentinels and Crime Solvers. Crimes commonly assigned to the division include rape, robbery, homicide, burglary, sex offenses, missing persons, internet crimes, narcotics and fraud related incidents. These investigations are the most serious or complex crimes. These types of crimes often require a team approach with several investigators working together or with outside agencies to successfully solve and apprehend offenders.
TrainingEach detective is trained in basic investigations, interview, interrogation, forensics, narcotics and photography. Specialty courses such as computer fraud, internet crimes, child sexual abuse investigation and forensic science courses have been completed by most detectives. Detectives are regularly enrolled in advanced training to expand their knowledge and skills necessary to carry out complex investigations.
PartnershipsThe Investigations Division routinely works with local, state and federal agencies in to investigate crimes occurring in Colonial Heights and the region. Agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigations, U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Marshals, ATF, Immigration & Customs Enforcement, Virginia Lottery, Virginia State Police and other local law enforcement agencies provide or receive assistance from the Investigations Division annually. In addition, the Investigations Division provides one officer to each of the following Task Forces:
1. Virginia State Police 1-B Drug Task Force
2. U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force
DetectivesDetectives are criminal investigators who gather facts and collect evidence for criminal cases within the City of Colonial Heights. They conduct interviews, examine records, observe the activities of suspects, and participate in raids and arrests. Detectives are typically assigned cases on a rotating basis and work on them until an arrest and trial are completed or no viable leads are discovered.
Special Operations Unit (SOU)The Special Operations Unit is a specialty unit comprised of police officers who concentrate on quality of life crimes (disorderly conduct, public intoxication, prostitution, etc), narcotics violations, gang activity and any other tasks that would require their specialized skill set. The SOU assists the Detectives with major crimes as needed. The Unit actively solicits tips from other officers and members of the public regarding suspected criminal activity of an ongoing, chronic nature. These officers work with local, state and federal agencies and are responsible for educating the public regarding topics of narcotics and gangs.
U.S. Marshals Service Regional Fugitive Task Force
The U.S. Marshals Service Regional Fugitive Task Force primary mission is to investigate and arrest, as part of joint law enforcement operations, persons who have active state and federal warrants for their arrest. The intent of the joint effort is to investigate and apprehend local, state and federal fugitives, thereby improving public safety and reducing violent crime.
Each participating agency agrees to refer cases for investigation by the U.S. Marshals Service Regional Fugitive Task Force (RFTF). Targeted crimes will primarily include violent crimes against persons, weapons offenses, felony drug offenses, failure to register as a sex offender and crimes committed by subjects who have a criminal history involving violent crimes, felony drug offenses and/or weapon offenses.
The Colonial Heights Police Department has one full-time officer assigned to the U.S. Marshals Service Regional Fugitive Task Force. The task force officer is under the direct supervision of the task force supervisor and is under general supervision of the sergeant of investigations.
Major Accident Investigations Team (M.A.I.T.)The M.A.I.T. is responsible for investigating fatal and major vehicle crashes, as well as crashes involving police department vehicles. M.A.I.T. also provides expertise to patrol officers regarding the investigation of less serious crashes. Many M.A.I.T. investigations involve the determination of speed and crash reconstruction. In order to provide accurate reconstructions of major crashes, the M.A.I.T. utilizes a Laser Data Collection Device to draw accident scenes.
ForensicsThe Investigations Division has at least one detective that has graduated the Virginia Department of Forensic Science Academy, which is a nine-week school of crime scene technology. This school certifies the detective in their ability to apply proper techniques for locating, recognizing, documenting and collecting items of physical evidence. They also will be able to preserve items of physical evidence, recognize the laboratory potential of examining physical evidence and properly package and submit physical evidence.
Crime Scene TechniciansCrime Scene Technicians are an essential part of the Colonial Heights Police Department. They are patrol officers trained to assist detectives with major crime scenes as well as investigate minor crimes on their own. Crime Scene Technicians are assigned to a patrol squad.
The Auxiliary Police is a volunteer division of the Colonial Heights Police Department. The main function of the Auxiliary Police is to provide support to the patrol division. The Auxiliary Police are utilized on both an assigned and call-out basis, as well to ride-along with officers on patrol. In the past the Auxiliary Police have been able to provide much needed additional manpower during holiday celebrations, storms and disasters, civic events, athletic events, and school functions. Also during the busy season and throughout the year, the Auxiliary Police provide security at local retailers, banks, etc. Besides the initial training upon acceptance by the police department, the Auxiliary Police receive regular monthly training, firearm qualifications, and other mandated qualifications.
QualificationsThe requirements to become an Auxiliary Police Officer are as follows:
• Must be 21 years of age
• Have a good driving record
• Pass a background investigation
• Successfully complete a basic 80-hour course to include handgun qualification
• Attend monthly training meetings
• Work a minimum of 16 hours per month
• Must be a resident of the City of Colonial Heights
All equipment and uniforms are furnished by the City of Colonial Heights.
Serving as an Auxiliary Police Officer is an excellent opportunity to aid your community while gaining valuable background experience in police work. Applications for Auxiliary Police Officer are only accepted during open enrollment periods. To inquire further about the Auxiliary Police, please call (804) 520-9311.
Sentinel OfficersThe Colonial Heights Sentinel Program incorporates citizen volunteers into the police department to supplement and enhance services. Sentinel volunteers perform non-enforcement tasks such as traffic control, motorist assistance, crime prevention, and assistance at special events.
Crime SolversWe are the residents, business owners, law enforcement agencies, and local media of Chesterfield County & the city of Colonial Heights, Virginia working together in the fight against crime.
WE ARE CRIME SOLVERS!
Scholastic Crime SolversOur scholastic program features students that help publicize Crime Solvers in our local high and middle schools. In return, the members of our scholastic program are given unique community service based opportunities, presentations by our Crime Solvers detectives and a chance at earning a yearly scholarship.