Question 1. Describe the proper collection and preservation of paint evidence from an automobile suspected of being involved in a hit and run incident. Paint that is foreign to the suspect automobile is observed on the hood. When a hit and run accident occurs, the responding officer should look for what is known as paint transfer between the vehicles involved. In this particular case, the transfer of paint would be located on the vehicles hood. The officer should make every attempt to recover known paint samples or loose paint chips close to the area and roadway where the accident occurred.
This is important due to the fact that with many vehicles the hoods may not have been painted at the same location or with the same paint used on the body. With this known, it is important that the officer take a paint sample from the exact part of the vehicle upon which the damage occurred. In reference to hit and run investigations, paint samples should be taken near the point of impact, but should not be taken from areas where there is corrosion or rust. This procedure can be done by the investigator by removing a painted section with a clean scalpel or knife blade.
It is important for the knife or scraping instrument used to be clean in order to avoid any form of cross contamination. Referring to the text, it suggests that samples be taken in ? inch squares. Note that each paint sample taken should be packaged separately and marked with the location from where it was recovered. Pg2 When a transfer of paint occurs with two automobiles, all of its paint layers including the foreign and underlying original paints must be removed from each car. It is suggested that a sample from an “adjacent undamaged area also be taken. The samples should be handled with care in order to protect their integrity. Picking the materials up with “tweezers or scooping them up with a piece of paper is suggested. The samples can then be placed in plastic or glass vials and logged as evidence reference the case. If the paint on the hood is smeared or embedded, the officer should not attempt to remove it. In these cases, the investigating officer should package the entire item and finally submit it to a laboratory for further analysis.