New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly has hired an outside expert to examine his department’s famed crime scene unit after a series of investigative screwups, reports the New York Daily News. The unit, which gathers physical evidence at crimes, was considered a national model, as well as an inspiration for the hit television show “CSI.” Problems in recent cases – including crime scene investigators’ failing to identify evidence at a shooting in which an officer was killed – upset police brass and led to Kelly’s decision.
Frank Fitzpatrick, a forensic managing consultant from Irvine, Ca., began the audit Monday. The unit also has seen a high number of disciplinary problems in recent months, sources said. “More panic management,” another former crime scene investigator said. “The top people don’t know what they are doing, so they panic and slap people for every little thing. A sign of trouble.”