As a full service law enforcement agency, the Etowah County Sheriff's Office Investigative Division investigates crimes countywide. Ten full-time, certified investigators are assigned to various parts of the County and are responsible for conducting follow-up investigations on all felony and misdemeanor crimes. The Investigative Division is Lead by Chief Darron Walker email@example.com and Captain Robin Grant firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of their investigations focus on burglaries, thefts, aggravated assaults, robberies, and domestic violence. While the primary focus is on the unincorporated areas of the county, this division also responds to requests from other agencies for assistance.
Crime Scene Unit
The Etowah County Sheriff's Office Crime Scene Unit is comprised of an investigator who is specially trained in the documentation, collection and preservation of evidence.
The Crime Scene Unit responds to crime scenes where evidence processing is beyond the capabilities of the normally equipped and trained deputy who originally responds to the scene. The time spent investigating the scenes can be anywhere from one hour to several days.
Evidence collected from crime scenes is processed in-house; however, if lab work is needed it is forwarded to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences for evaluation and analysis. The laboratory findings (from evidence collected) and the results of the investigation (which is conducted by investigators) are presented in court proceedings to aid in the successful conviction of criminals.
The Etowah County Sheriff's Office utilizes the polygraph test, commonly called a lie detector test. The digital, computerized machine is operated by an investigator who is certified as a polygraph examiner.
To obtain a license as a polygraph operator requires a 10-week, 400-hour course and five years' experience as an investigator or a four-year degree in the law enforcement field. Polygraph Examiner Fred Lasseter has both qualifications.
Murder cases, robberies, burglaries, and thefts have been solved by using the tool during investigations. A test takes about three or four hours, including a pre-test interview, three to five actual tests and the post-test interview.