Remember the good old days when dusting for prints meant using a brush to spread various colored powders across surfaces you thought and hoped a bad guy had touched? Then came time to apply the tape, when you prayed you wouldn’t screw up the fingerprint while removing the sticky stuff from doorknobs, desktops, knife blades, and the wall behind the toilet (yeah, sometimes guys place a hand or two there while tending to business).

Oh yeah, let’s not forget about the black powder that magically transferred to your clothing, your cheeks, your tie, to your partners hands, the walls, the dishes in the kitchen, the light switches, and the neighbors white cat. My goodness, that stuff is messy!

Well, there’s a bit of relief on the horizon for investigators who suffer from Mr. Monk Syndrome (don’t like to get their hands dirty). And that relief comes in the form of electricity. That’s right, there’s a new fingerprinting sheriff in town, and it’s called electrochemiluminescence.

Chinese scientists have devised a way to electrically “light up” fingerprints, even very old, or “barely there” prints. Electrochemiluminescence occurs when passing electrical current through the combination of a compound, such as ruthenium complex, and a partner chemical like tripropylamine. The mixture then becomes chemically unstable as electrons pass through (it’s in an “excited” state), causing it to give off light as it returns to ground (an electrical circuit flows from positive to ground/negative, sort of like completing a circle).

In this case, a technician transfers the print to a stainless steel plate (or glass plate treated with indium tin oxide), which serves as the electrode (the positive part of the circuit). A reagent solution containing the chemical compounds mentioned above is then added. Then, in short, the print simply lights up—ridge patterns, lines, outline of pores in the grooves, and even the finest of lines branching from the ends of the ridges are all illuminated.

These electrically-charged prints are so resolute that photographing a high quality image is easily achieved, and all without damaging the fingerprint.

So, maybe the day has finally come when there’ll be no more black smudges and stains all over the burglary victim’s white leather couch, white silk dress, freshly painted white walls, and white marble tiles.

Best of all, though, the investigator can go home at the end of the day still wearing a clean and crisp, bright white shirt.

And, no more black powder on the tip of the detective’s nose. Yep, as anyone who’s ever fingerprinted anything will tell you, as soon as the fingerprint powders come out, that’s when the nose starts itching like crazy.

Sirchie fingerprint labratories

The Sirchie Fingerprint Laboratories Tour

During the first two days of Evidence Collection Training, we used a number of chemicals, fingerprint powders, and brushes, and employed several different fingerprint lifting techniques on a variety of tricky surfaces. We discussed the benefits of both cheap and costly Alternate Light Sources.

Our notebooks were filling up and theories of the perfect crime were flying around the class. We kept quizzing Robert Skiff, our instructor, (Sirchie Training Manager/Technical Training Specialist) about ways to ‘get away with the murder of the decade.’ But, as we learned, there is no perfect crime. That pesky trace evidence will always be waiting at every scene for the investigator to discover it, photograph it, tag it, bag it, and transport it without losing the integrity of the sample.

It was time to visit the plant – see how the powders, brushes, and other crime scene paraphernalia were made.

Sirchie manufactures most of its products in-house. The specialized vehicles for SWAT, bomb rescue, arson investigation, and surveillance work, etc., are built in New Jersey, but the smaller products are produced right in North Carolina.

Security was carefully controlled throughout our tour. Most of our group writes crime fiction, so we are always looking for a way our fictional criminals can break in (or out of) a wild assortment of locations. As we walked through the stacks and aisles of products, we commented to each other on the smooth organization and many checks Sirchie had in place. Cameras everywhere. Limited access to the assembly floor. Labyrinths a person could easily get turned around in. If we got separated from the group while taking an extra photo or two, we were found and escorted back by an always friendly employee.

Of course, we couldn’t turn into rogue students anyway. Our fingerprints littered the classroom and they knew where we lived.

Security plays a part in the assembly model as well. Each product they create is put together from start to finish by hand. There are no assembly lines because of trade secrets and a dedication to preserving product integrity. Personnel are carefully screened before being hired and qualification for employment includes graduate degrees. No criminal history whatsoever is allowed. Every employee comes through the Evidence Collection Training Class so that they understand what Sirchie does as a whole.

Templates for the various products are created in-house. The operators of these machines are highly trained experts. Quality control is paramount, so training is constant.

All the printing is done in-house. The printing area was stacked with cases of items being packaged for shipment. We saw ink strips large enough to process tire treads.

Field Kits are created for general use by investigators, but can be specifically designed for a special need. The small vials contain enough chemicals to test unknown stains and substances at the scene. Note the dense foam holding the vials and bottles firmly in place. The kits are usually kept in the trunk and probably get tossed around quite a bit. The foam insures against breakage during car chases and while bumping across uneven road surfaces.

There are fiberglass brushes, feather dusters for the very light powder, regular stiffer brushes, and magnetic powder brush applicators.

If a handgun is seized for evidence, there needs to be a simple, yet effective way to track chain of possession.

*Bag the gun to preserve the fingerprints and

*drop the gun in the box.

*Then fill in the blanks on the box.

*Easy to stack and store until needed.

Think of all the cases that may be ongoing in a large jurisdiction – the evidence is not sitting at the police station. It’s in a warehouse someplace, and needs to be easily identified when required for court. In addition to several sized boxes for guns and knives, etc. Sirchie also provides an incredible assortment of resealable plastic bags for preserving evidence like clothing, unidentified fibers, etc.

Magnetic powder was being processed that day and then put into rows and rows of jars and jugs. Before it is sent out to the customers, each lot is tested for moisture content, appropriate ratio of ingredients and other trade secret tests. We joked about taking some back to class for the next round of fingerprint study and were surprised by how heavy the jugs were.

No, she’s not making bullets. She is assembling the cyanowand cartridges used for fuming with superglue.

Sirchie makes riot gear.

This is not a photo of something from a SyFy movie. At the center of the shot is a helmet template. The drills encircling the template are aimed at spots where holes are needed for each helmet, depending on the type of helmet in production. All the holes are drilled at the same time.

The helmet before anything has been added to it.

Helmet padding

Buckles for the helmets

Padding is inserted after the buckles are attached.

Helmet components

Completed Riot Helmet

The Optical Comparator, as well as the other machines, are built to order by hand.

While in the warehouse, we learned that if a product is discontinued, it is still supported by Sirchie. That means that if a law enforcement officer calls up with a problem a few years after purchasing a machine, he can still get help. Reassuring for jurisdictions with a tight budget that can’t afford to replace expensive equipment every year or two.

Sirchie sends supplies to TV shows, so next time you’re watching a fave detective or examiner lift prints with a hinge lifter, it may have come from Sirchie.

Great tour, great people who work so hard to keep the law enforcement community supplied with the gear needed to catch the bad guys.

Next up: Bloodstains


Patti Phillips is a mystery writer/photographer/reviewer whose best investigative days are spent writing, cooking, traveling for research, and playing golf. Her time on the golf course was murderously valuable while creating the perfect alibi for the chief villain in Patti’s novel, “One Sweet Motion.” Did you know that there are spots on the golf course that can’t be accessed by listening devices? Of course, it helps to avoid suspicion if you work on lowering your handicap while plotting the dirty deeds.

Patti Phillips writes the online detective blog, www.kerriansnotebook.com. (Detective Kerrian chats about life as a detective as well as the central case in “One Sweet Motion.”) Patti’s book reviews of mysteries and thrillers can be found on the Facebook, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble sites. Her own review site, ‘Nightstand Book Reviews’ is coming soon.

Patti is a transplanted metropolitan New Yorker/north Texan, now living in the piney state of North Carolina.

The fast way

Finally, your protagonists can leave their tape measures, rulers, and graph paper in the trunks of their cars. Yes, thanks to a company called Leica Geosystems, law enforcement now has the capability to “scan” a crime scene in mere minutes, instead of the many hours they used to spend measuring and photographing.

Detectives set up a three dimensional laser scanner, switch it on, and the device does all the work, creating the scene in animated 3D. The re-creations and measurements are so accurate that they’re 100% approved for use in court testimony. In fact, the Kentucky State Police recently added one to their “toolbox.”

Policing via video

Suppose for a moment that George Zimmerman had relied totally on his cellphone instead of a 9mm? Suppose Trayvon Martin had called 911 to report a suspicious man following him? And suppose each of the two had called a 911 center that was capable of receiving video calls? Surely, had video 911 had been available, well, that tragic outcome most certainly would have been different.

Unfortunately, it’s too late for the Martin/Zimmerman case and the thousands of others like it, but video 911 is on the way. Actually, people will also be able to text their emergency calls too, which is a good thing since many crime victims, such as the frightened students at Virginia Tech, have attempted to text 911 with no response. I’m guessing that people today are so accustomed to texting as their main means of communicating that punching in 911 on the dial pad never occurs to them.

In fact, police departments and sheriff’s offices all across the country are already utilizing video technology in many ways. For example, the Chatham County Georgia Sheriff’s office recently cut the ribbon on their new Video Visitation Center. Sheriff Al St. Lawrence told WTOC news reporters that his jail, on average, receives over 1,000 visitors each day, which translates into 1,000 people and their belongings being searched, as well as strip searches for each inmate who enters and leaves the visiting room. More searches means more deputies. More deputies means more pay. More pay means straining an already-strained budget. And straining anything in law enforcement means reduced safety.

So, Sheriff St. Lawrence had an idea, and that idea was video visitation. After all, police and courts all over the country are conducting video arraignments and bond hearings, so why not visit by video?

Here’s how it works. Visitors arrive and enter the lobby of the 2.5 million dollar Video Visitation Center. They tell the deputy which inmate they’d like to “visit,” and then the visitors asked to have a seat in front of one of the 66 video monitors in the large room. The inmate, who remains in his housing unit, is also seated in front a similar video terminal. Once the deputy makes the connection, the loved ones “video visit” for a specified amount of time. No searches, no inmate transports from housing units to visiting rooms, no contraband flow into the facility, etc. Next up for Sheriff St. Lawrence…video home visits, a way to cut the cost of transportation for family members.

Now, back to video 911 calls. Imagine what a huge help it would be for firemen to see what sort of inferno they’re heading to. How about the case of Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman? Had Martin been able to call 911 via video the police would have been able to see the entire event as it unfolded. Same for Zimmerman had he been able to call via video. His defense claims would have been instantly validated or refuted.

In the case of domestic calls, the victim often calls but changes the story once police arrive. If those first calls were video calls, well, police would have already seen “the heat of the moment,” so changing a story out of fear wouldn’t be an option, which could perhaps save a life.


Let’s step away from the video topic for a moment and quickly address Neighborhood Watch programs, which is a wonderful tool—extended eyes and ears for law enforcement. The program works well when it’s working well. I know, that’s an odd statement, but true. Neighborhood Watch is self-explanatory…neighbors watch their neighborhood, looking out for suspicious activity. When/if they see something that appears to be out of the norm they call police. Pretty simple concept and it can work nicely to prevent crime.

Now, thanks to the National Sheriff’s Association, there’s a tool available to assist neighborhood watchers, and that’s a specially designed Neighborhood Watch app for Smartphones. Using the app, “watchers” not only have the capability of reporting activities to the police, they can also send photos, videos, texts, etc. The app also features instructional videos, mini-training classes, and details about starting your own Watch. The program even features an Ask The Expert section.

The best part about the Neighborhood Watch app is that it is available to everyone, not just already established NW members. There is no monthly fee, like many services, just the one-time $1.99 fee to install the app on your phone.

To get the app, simply search your phone’s app store for “Official Neighborhood Watch App.” or go to nwapp.org.

CSI in your pocket

Officers, both real and fictional, have taken advantage of rapidly advancing technology, using the sci-fi-esque gadgets in the never-ending task of fighting crime. And many modern crime-fighting tools and weapons have taken on a James Bondish flair, such as rifles capable of firing around 90 degree corners, and laser-guided, missile-like bullets.

Thinking back to the first portable phone installed in a police car I once drove, a take-home sheriff’s office patrol vehicle, well, the phone was not very portable. Not at all.

Technicians mounted a huge box of something—wires, batteries, and perhaps even a Flintstone cartoon character pedaling a cycle-like contraption that generated enough power to run the thing. The “thing” attached the passenger side floorboard, near the “hump, beside the radio console and light and siren controls. A large handset was tethered to the box via a long curly black wire, like the telephones we once had in our homes (younger folks would be amazed to learn that we once had to stand or sit in one spot to talk to Aunt Sally, Uncle Billy Bob, or friends from school).

Then came the bag phones. Remember how cool it was to finally be able to carry your phone with you, even while in the grocery store. Ah, so portable…

Of course, phones are different now. And we’re able to use them to text, check emails, stocks, and Facebook. We can Tweet, Tweetdeck, and Twitter away, all while driving 80mph on the freeway, simultaneously eating a Big Mac, fiddling with the satellite radio, glancing at the morning paper, swigging from a coffee cup, and, believe it or not, answer the occasional phone call.

There’s an app for this and an app for that. Here an app, there an app. Apps are EVERYWHERE! — apps for news, bowling, TV shows, radio programs, police scanners, HuffPo, CNN, Fox, Words With Friends, Occupy, Don’t Occupy, Newt, Mitt, Herm, Sarah, Obama, ETrade, Scottrade, star charts, Scrabble…and there’s even an app that produces sounds like the after-effects of a large bean burrito.

How about the app that I’m quite sure Lanie Parish has on her phone, the iVoodoo app, designed to allow the user to stick pins in the enemy of their choosing.

And let’s not forget the Atomic Zit Popper app for those of you who’d like a stroll down memory lane. Yes, for hours at a time you and your friends can squish, pop, and squirt zits until your little fingers wear to the bone. A real explosion of fun.

And now (drum roll, please) there’s an app for the folks who’s job it is to respond to crime scenes. Yes, the new app, Pocket CSI, designed by Law Enforcement Training and Resource Group LLC. is for first responders and CSI’s. Actually, LETRG’s program is an entire suite of applications for all smart phones (a camera with a phone is a must—crime scene photography, you know).

Included in the application are tools of the trade, such as a caliper, blood spatter trajectory calculator, DOA notes, skid mark calculator, GPS indicator and marker for the crime scene and individual items of evidence, compass, level, minimum speed of travel, note-taking recorder, digital dimension calculator, automatic case file and evidence numbering system, a complete set of reference files, and much, much more. The reference files alone—Miranda, weapons identifier, pupil size identifier, etc. is worth the installation of the application.

Why, this app even has the capability to give you the position of the victim and the killer when the fatal blow was delivered. That’s right, by taking a photo of the blood spatter at the scene the app automatically calculates, using the major and minor axis of the droplets, the number of pixels wide and long, and then provides the angles, instead of doing it the old fashioned way. You know, as Dexter would do it.

The Pocket CSI stores all information in separate, files—blood spatter information in one, DOA notes in another, etc., and when you’re ready, simply transfer it all to a single DVD.

All for less than 80 bucks. Now that’s a deal.

Of course, the Atomic Zit Popper app is only $1.99. I wonder, though, if it calculates the spatter angles…


GPS vehicle tracking

Have you noticed an increased police presence wherever you go? You know what I mean. No matter where you turn, park, or travel, there seems to be a police car at every corner. Make you nervous? Well, you should be, Mr. Serial Killer, because there’s probably a tracking device attached to your car.

Tracking devices like the FBI’s “Bumper Beeper” pictured above, or the cop’s good old stand-by, the Bird Dog, are used by law enforcement officers who have a real need to know where their crooks are at all times. Yes, sometimes it’s beneficial to know where the targeted bad guys are going, who they’re talking to, and when they’re doing whatever it is they do—24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

Bird Dog tracking device (Bird Dog is a registered trademark)

The devices are simple, actually. A transmitter magnetically attached to the target vehicle sends a signal back to a receiver that’s monitored by the police. The units are battery powered, usually up to 120 hours on a single charge. Some units contain in-housing batteries while others, like the Bumper Beeper (not the actual name), are powered by a magnetic, cylindrical battery tube attached to the vehicle frame in a location near the transmitter.

Magnetic battery tube

Installation of these devices is easy—sneak into someone’s driveway during a dark night and stick the device to a vehicle’s metal frame, quietly crawl away from the car until you reach the end of the driveway, and then run like crazy back to your police car that’s parked on the next block. Then, you, out of breath and wheezing like an antique pump organ, and your partner giggle like a couple of school kids about how silly you looked creeping around the neighborhood like a Peeping Tom.

Bird Dog transmitter (inside a water resistant case) attached to the frame of an automobile.

Law enforcement secretly installs the tracking device on a target’s car. Some models are hidden in the engine compartment and wired to the car battery. Others are slapped to the undercarriage with industrial-strength magnets.

As the target drives around, the tracking device triangulates its position from three or four GPS satellites, and digitally transmits its coordinates continuously by radio.

The law enforcement agency receives the coordinates and displays the target’s location in real time on a computerized map, keeping a record of the target’s movement. Illustration: Mitsu Overstreet/Wired.com

In the old days, a portable receiver was mounted inside a police car. This allowed the officers to track their target vehicle by staring at a screen displaying a tiny white ball (remember the old Atari Pong game) that represented the bad guy’s car. An accompanying BEEP (the same Pong sound) was heard every few seconds, The BEEP grew louder and faster as the officer grew closer to the crooks. It was a mind-numbing adventure, but it worked just fine. And it was a lot of fun the first few times you used the thing.

Today, officers can track in real time using GPS technology, if they have access to the equipment. No longer do they have to drive all over the city, hoping to get close enough to the target to allow the equipment to work. Now detectives can sit in their office and monitor a bad guy’s precise movements in real time.

Present day Bird Dogs trackers offer locations every ten seconds, no external antennas, no software to install, and all wireless capabilities.

Until January 23, 2012, there was absolutely NO requirement (no warrant needed) for the use of a Bird Dog tracking device. Of course, this was often challenged in court, but until the January Supreme Court ruling, cases had been upheld (United States v. Karo, for example). Before the US Supreme Court ruling, however, the Washington State Supreme Court had ruled (State of Washington v. Jackson, 2003) that a warrant was needed for the installation and use of GPS tracking devices.

I know many of you are fiction writers, so please get this image out of your head. This is not the Bird Dog I’m writing about today.

90 Minute DNA analysis

We’ve all heard the stories of DNA tests in criminal cases that take months before results are known to law enforcement officials. Needless to say, waiting for those results is akin to watching paint dry. However, at risk is a criminal who may strike again before his identity is discovered. Well, that wait time may soon be a thing of the past. Enter Rapid DNA Testing (R-DNA).

Law enforcement is one step closer to a mere two-hour wait time for answers to their DNA whodunit questions. In fact, using a device such as the RapidHIT 200 Human Identification System, a positive DNA match could be received in as little as 90 minutes. And, that process just may move out of forensic laboratories into the hands of law enforcement officers and detectives. Think about it, soon there may one of these devices at every booking station in every police station and sheriff’s office  across the country. Even samples from crime scenes will produce answers in minutes.

RapidHIT 200

Suspect doesn’t want to provide his name? Fingerprints burned off to hide an identity? No problem. A simple swab of the inside of a cheek and presto…instant ID. Well, ID results would be immediate if the thug’s information is in the system. But chances are in the officer’s favor that the suspect is a repeat customer.

These portable, desktop devices would also serve well during mass disaster scenarios. The ability to identify victims quickly would certainly provide a small amount of comfort to the families who now must wait weeks and months to learn the fate of their loved ones.

The RapidHit 200 device comes complete with nucleic acid purification and short tandem repeat (STR) amplification reagents that produce the speedy DNA profiles from human samples. The reagents come in disposable cartridges that eliminate the need for human contact during the process, which, in turn, eliminates possible contamination and false testing results.

Basically, the RapidHit is as almost as simple as plugging in a cartridge containing the reagent, loading the human sample, and then hitting the power switch. Not much more complicated than operating a toaster, wouldn’t you say?

Finally, mystery writers, you have a way of making your pages turn faster. DNA results in minutes and you don’t have to rely on fiction to make it happen.

Nope, no more monkeying around with the plot to make the DNA fit the story.

Gee, what’s next, a mind-reading device that notifies the police when a crook is thinking about committing a crime? Who knows, that sort of thing just might be on the drawing board this morning.

Oh, wait, I forgot that a Utah university researcher has developed a thought-to-text device that’s 90% accurate when it translates a person’s thoughts into words. Don’t want to answer the officer’s questions? No problem, they’ll soon be skipping the interview and interrogation by attaching a few electrodes to a suspect’s head and let his thoughts tell the story.

And you thought it was scary to have a mere few thousand cameras hanging around the country watching your every move. It’s time for your skin to really start crawling now, because they know what you’re thinking…

* By the way, R-DNA was the method of DNA testing used to confirm that the U.S. had indeed killed Osama Bin Laden.

IntegenX Inc. and Promega Corporation image of RapidHit200

Armored luxury cars

We’ve all either read or written car-chase scenes where the lead is flying and the rounds are zinging and pinging off fenders and glass on both vehicles. In real life that would be a ridiculous notion, right? Well, not if your characters were driving one of these totally armored/bullet-proof vehicles (yes, these are actual armored vehicles).

BMW 7 Series Sedan

Audi S8 Sedan

Lexus 600 HL

Mercedes S550

Ford Expedition

And, for those of you who are simply dying to know…yes, the tires are specially-designed “run flat” tires. When punctured by gunfire or spike strips, they’re still able to run on their solid interiors, as seen below.

Actually, the rubber part of the tire is merely window dressing and isn’t needed at all. Well, except for comfort, hugging a wet roadway, etc. But the run-flat tires will allow the vehicle to travel with little or no difficulty.

Even the gas tanks are protected by bullet-proof material.

* The Armored Group images. Please contact them for all your armored vehicle needs.

Of course, for short trips around town there’s always…

And for long journeys when stopping presents immeasurable security risks…

After the trigger is pulled

Experts are often asked about the kind and size of entrance and exit wounds produced by various ammunition. The rounds (bullets) in the photograph below are .45 caliber hollow-point bullets similar to the rounds fired from the Thompson sub-machine gun I’m holding.

The diameter of the .45 rounds is slightly larger than the diameter of the slim Sharpie pens many authors use to sign books. That’s pretty close to the size of most entrance wounds—the size of the bullet(s) that struck the victim.


.45 caliber rounds and magazine

The picture below is of one of the .45 caliber rounds after it was fired from the Thompson machine gun. The round passed through the self-healing wall tiles in the firing range, striking the concrete and steel wall on the the other side. Hitting the solid surface head-on caused the bullet to expand and fracture which creates the exit wound we see in shooting victims.

Many times, those bullet slivers break off inside the body causing further internal damage. The size of an exit wound depends on what the bullet hits inside the body. If the bullet only hits soft tissue the wound will be less traumatic. If it hits bone, expect much more damage. Easy rule of thumb—the larger the caliber (bullet size), the bigger the hole.

.45 caliber round after it struck concrete and steel head-on. Note the expansion and separation of the round

Bullets that hit something other than their intended target, such as a brick wall or a metal lamp post, can break apart sending pieces of flying copper and lead fragments, called shrapnel, into crowds of innocent bystanders. Those flying fragments are just as lethal as any intact, full-sized bullet.

FYI – Bullets don’t always stop people. I’ve seen shooting victims get up and run after they’ve been shot several times. And for goodness sake, people don’t fly twenty feet backward after they’ve been struck by a bullet. They just fall down and bleed. Well, they may moan, wriggle, and curse a lot too. And they might get back up and start shooting again.

*This is a repeat article. I decided to re-post it after attempting to read a book that clearly showed an author’s obvious lack of knowledge and research regarding shooting situations. Needless to say, I did not turn another page after reading the goofy scene.

Who's the Boss?

Cellphone use by prisoners is a serious problem for corrections officials. Sure, some inmates simply use the devices to stay in touch with loved ones, but others use the phones to continue a criminal enterprise, including calling for hits on rival gang members. One such case occurred in Baltimore, Maryland where a man on the street was murdered as a result of a hit called for (by cell phone) by a Black Guerrilla Family (BGF) leader who was incarcerated at a Hagerstown prison. Cellphones are also used for continuing other illegal activities on the “outside” and even within the prison, such as drug distribution and the intimidation and assaults on other inmates and prison staff.

To combat the recent explosion of cellphone use inside corrections facilities, officials have turned to a unique piece of furniture, the BOSS chair. BOSS (Body Orifice Security Scanner) is quite effective and quite simple to operate.

The inmate sits and the chair does the rest by using its built-in magnetic field sensors to detect both ferrous and non-ferrous metals, including extremely small bits of metal that would not be detected by ordinary metal detectors. The chair also detects metal objects inside the body (inmates have been known to swallow and insert objects into body cavities), such as razor blades, crack pipes, knives, guns, cell phones, hacksaw blades, lighters, etc.

Once an item has been detected BOSS emits an audible alarm, alerting prison officials. The inmate has the option of immediately giving up the item, if it’s in a place where he can easily do so, or being placed into monitored isolation until he does so naturally.

The Boss chair is designed in such a way that each section of the device examines a different part of the body.

1. Oral – the top arrow points to the section for oral exams (items hidden inside the mouth). An inmate stands behind the chair and rests his chin on the top platform for this search.

2. Abdomen- the second arrow points to the section for abdominal searches.

3. Anal/Vaginal – third arrow

4. Leg/shin – fourth arrow

5. Feet – bottom arrow

Boss has found a home in many places, not just prisons and jails, including, Customs and Border Patrol Facilities, Precious Metal Mines and Refineries, Coin Counting Facilities, Loss Prevention Applications, Jewelry and Watch Manufacturing, and Computer Component Manufacturing.

Portable BOSS devices are also useful on prison recreation yards and other areas where inspection may be required.

This portable unit is also has the capability of searching body cavities.

*Ranger Security images