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Culpeper detective graduates from state forensic academy

Culpeper Master Police Officer Detective Richard Brooking, a 25-year veteran, graduated last Friday from the Virginia Forensic Science Academy’s nine-week course in Richmond.

Brooking’s father, Curtis, and Culpeper Police Chief Chris Jenkins attended the graduation ceremony.

The academy provides high-level training to qualified crime scene search officers. Established in 1974, the academy has graduated hundreds of officers in the finer science of crime scene searches.

Law enforcement personnel learn how to properly recognize, document, collect and preserve physical evidence that they submit to the state lab for analysis.

Through the rigorous training academy students familiarize themselves with the capabilities and limitations of the state’s modern forensic lab in examining the wide spectrum of materials, which can be collected as evidence in criminal cases.

The academy’s extensive training, which provides valuable background information and practical application techniques, coupled with the student’s work experience, maximizes the use of the state lab for both their departments but the state’s criminal justice system.

Although the department uses some of the equipment and has some of the same training, Brooking said his graduation will benefit the department as a whole.

“It will help training other officers in procedures of handling evidence and processing crime scene,” said Brooking. “It will also help us work cases better and achieve more convictions in court.”

The academy is much sought after training throughout the state. Only two academy sessions are held annually, with about 12 students in each class.

Brooking joins three other forensic academy graduates on the Culpeper Police Department with this intensive training.

“The department and the community are fortunate to have dedicated officers like Richard Brooking and others who work hard each and every day to make our community a better place in which to live,” said Police Chief Chris Jenkins.
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