The Shelby Police departments Investigations Division is made up of two individual units. We have the Criminal Investigations Unit and the Vice/Narcotics Unit. The Criminal Investigations unit works cases generally reported to the department that need in-depth investigation and the Vice/Narcotics unit generally works cases related to the use and or sale of narcotics and cases related to alcohol or prescription drugs.
The Criminal Investigations unit is comprised of a Lieutenant, Sergeant, five detectives and one fulltime crime scene investigator. All of the detectives are trained to investigate all types of crimes. However, they are specifically trained in certain areas and do specialize in the investigation of particular crimes. The make-up of our unit is as follows:
- Lieutenant: Scott Champion
- Sergeant : Jason Benfield
- Detective Chris Truett (Breaking and Entering: Business and Residential)
- Detective Scott Brown (Adult Sex Crime)
- Detective Matt Styers (Violent Crime and Child Sex Crime)
- Detective Rick Humphries (Fraud, Paper Crime and Crime Scene backup)
- Detective Tyler Chapman ( Crime Scene Investigation)
- Detective Seth Treadway (Violent Crimes)
Generally, a detective works Monday through Friday. However often detectives are called in to work cases on the weekend or after hours. We have a Detective and Supervisor on call twenty four hours a day, seven days a week. The Detectives rotate being on- call every fourth week and the Lieutenant and Sergeant rotate every other week. On- call detectives respond on a case by case basis depending on the crime as well as the needs of the on duty patrol shift.
- Criminal Investigations responds to all of the following crimes as well as any other in which we are requested:
- Homicides/Suspicious deaths
- Assaults with serious injury with the probability of death
- Robbery of a business
- Arsons/Suspicious fires
The Criminal Investigations Lieutenant is responsible for reviewing incident reports on a daily basis and either assigning the case back to the reporting officer or assigning the case to the Criminal Investigations unit for further investigation. The solvability factors of each case are considered when assigning the case. Some of the factors are: are there any witnesses or suspects to be located and interviewed, is there a description of the suspect, can a vehicle be identified, is there any traceable property, is there any physical evidence to be processed or collected and is the any video or photographic evidence of the crime. There are numerous factors to be considered when assigning a case these are just a few of the most common considered.
When a detective is assigned a case they are responsible for thoroughly investigating the crime reported. Although every case is different in nature a complete investigation is conducted. The type of crime being investigated determines the investigative steps take.
General investigative steps to be taken include:
- Victim Interviews
- Canvass of the area for possible suspects and/or witnesses
- Interviewing all witnesses as well as the suspect
- Evaluation of the crime scene
- NCIC entries on any property or wanted persons
- Cross reference of information to corroborate accounts of the incident
- Cross reference of any documents or serial numbers to locate stolen property.
Once a detective has made an arrest there is still a lot of work that must be completed on the case in order to help ensure a successful prosecution of the suspect. A properly investigated case generates a large amount of information that must be documented and filed appropriately in the case file. All of this information and paperwork must be organized and maintained in order to recreate the events of the case during the trial. Detectives spend many hours investigating, arranging, documenting and preparing the case for trial. Finally, the detective must meet with the prosecuting attorney to go over the case in preparation for the trail.
Each Detectives goal is to bring some type closure to each victim in their case. We fully understand that we can’t completely erase the situation or the crime, but we can help make it somewhat easier for the victim during this stressful event.
Criminal Investigations Lieutenant
Lieutenant Scott Champion
Office (704) 484-7151
Criminal Investigations Sergeant
Sergeant Jason Benfield
Office (704) 669-6641