Physical evidence

Physical evidence is a broad category which encompasses any physical item that may be useful in proving the prosecution’s case against a suspect. Physical evidence may include an item which the suspect attempted to steal, videotapes from a surveillance camera, a personal item belonging to the suspect that the suspect left at the scene, a signed statement by the suspect, etc.

If a crime has occurred, and there are no witnesses, the prosecution’s case might be based entirely upon physical evidence. It is important to remember that all physical evidence must be treated with the utmost care so that such evidence is not lost, altered, or damaged in any way.

If criminal charges are brought against a suspect, but the physical evidence the prosecution intends to use against the suspect has been altered or damaged, the defense attorney may be able to exclude that evidence from trial.

If you have any physical evidence, be sure to properly preserve it and account for it. Have a proper chain of custody within your organization so no one can allege that the evidence was different property than the one that is the subject of the incident. Photographs taken at the time of the incident are especially helpful to the attorneys.