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Organization And Functions Manual

11. FBI Cooperative And Information Services

Cooperative Services of the FBI: The cooperative services of the FBI, such as fingerprint identification and scientific laboratory examinations, are available to local, county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies. The FBI also provides, without cost, technical and scientific assistance, including expert testimony in federal or local courts, for all duly constituted law enforcement agencies, other organizational units of the Department of Justice, and other federal agencies, which may desire to avail themselves of the service. As provided for in procedures agreed upon between the Secretary of State and the Attorney General, the services of the FBI laboratory may also be made available to foreign law enforcement agencies and courts.

Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS): The FBI maintains a Criminal Justice Information Services Division (CJIS) which is a national clearinghouse of information based on fingerprints of arrested persons. The fingerprint cards on file in this Division are not only the fingerprints of arrested persons, but also are prints submitted by the Office of Personnel Management, military services, and others.

When the fingerprints of an arrested person are received from a law enforcement agency, they are searched through the criminal files and the contributing agency is advised of any previous arrest record in these fingerprint files. If there is no previous record, the contributing agency likewise is advised of this fact. Whenever arrests are made in cases investigated by the FBI the arrest record is included in the reports of the special agents. The CJIS Division of the Bureau also receives and records wanted notices and renders many other services wherein fingerprint identification is vital such as in disasters.

National Crime Information Center (NCIC): The FBI manages and operates the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) system. NCIC is a nationwide computerized information system which serves all levels of the criminal justice community - federal, state, and local. Its purpose is to improve the administration of criminal justice through the more efficient exchange of documented criminal justice information. Participants in the NCIC system are linked to the FBI's computer at Washington, D.C., through a nationwide telecommunications network which allows them to enter and access records in a matter of seconds. The NCIC data base contains records on wanted persons, stolen property (vehicles, license plates, guns, securities, boats, and other serially numbered articles), and missing persons who meet certain criteria. NCIC also contains criminal history records on persons arrested and fingerprinted for serious or significant offenses.

Uniform Crime Reporting: Law enforcement agencies throughout the United States at city, county, and state levels submit to the FBI information on crime within their jurisdiction. From this information, the FBI annually publishes a book entitled "Crime in the United States - Uniform Crime Reports," which contains a nationwide view of crime, including the extent of crimes known to the police, crime trend tables, arrest statistics, and other related crime data. Copies of this annual publication are available upon request.

In addition to the annual publication, the FBI publishes preliminary releases concerning crime and crime trends on a semi-annual basis. Also, the FBI publishes on a periodic basis information concerning the number of law enforcement officers killed, assaults on federal officers, and nationwide bombing information. Federal uniform crime reporting is being implemented and reports will be published in the foreseeable future.

Training: The FBI trains its own personnel at the FBI Academy, Quantico, Virginia. In addition, the FBI operates the FBI National Academy, inaugurated in 1935, to train selected local police officers as executive and command personnel. Annually, up to 1,000 local police officers attend the National Academy for advanced training in law enforcement topics. The FBI Academy also holds special police schools, seminars, and symposia covering a broad spectrum of timely matters for police officers and other members of the criminal justice community. Additionally, instruction in forensic science is provided to state and local investigative and crime laboratory personnel at the FBI Academy's Forensic Science Research and Training Center.

Another facet of FBI training is conducted at the local level. Each year FBI field police instructors conduct many classes on law enforcement topics for state, county, and local police officers in their own departments. The FBI Laboratory conducts specialized Forensic Science Training for Crime Laboratory and police personnel at the Forensic Science Research and Training Center facility at Quantico, Virginia. Applications may be obtained from the local FBI office.

Services of the FBI Information Resources Division (Engineering): Services of the FBI Engineering Section which are made available to local, county, state, and foreign law enforcement agencies and courts are generally in the area of expert testimony related to forensic examinations of magnetic tape recordings. Examples of examinations include audio enhancements and tests for tape authenticity and copyrights. Additionally, the Engineering Section provides testimony related to and conducts examinations of electronic devices such as illegal interception of communication devices.

Evidence should be sent directly to the Information Resources Services Division, in Washington, D.C. Attention: Engineering Section, for examination. Ask the local office of the FBI for assistance in the proper method of packing and transmitting evidence and obtaining the services of FBI experts when testimony is needed in connection with the prosecution of a case in which the United States is a party of interest. A request to the Department for authority to obtain the services of such experts from other sources should not be submitted.

When expert testimony is desired for a trial, the court appearance of the FBI examiner should be requested for the actual date on which the anticipated testimony will be needed rather than for the date on which the trial is to begin. It is realized that the actual date on which the examiner's testimony will be desired cannot always be determined. However, if it can be expected that such testimony will not be needed on the first day of the trial but rather on some subsequent day of the trial, the Engineering Section should be so advised in order that every effort may be made to insure that the examiner's absence from FBI Headquarters is held to a minimum. Requests for testimony are handled by the Engineering Section in the order in which they are received. Therefore, to insure the presence of an expert at a trial, his/her appearance should be requested as far in advance as possible.

[cited in JM 1-2.303]