GREEN BAY - Law enforcement officers honed in on a number of crime scenes in Green Bay Thursday.
But they weren't real crime scenes. These locations provided the final step in a week long training course for officers to learn how to better process evidence.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice's State Crime Lab puts on these training courses six times a year.
With training, law enforcement can better collect evidence, and in turn, the crime lab runs more efficiently.
Inside the Green Bay Police Department's garage, there were two dead bodies, shell casings, and a knife. By the looks of the scene, it was a poker game gone wrong.
But what happened and who did it? That's what these law enforcement officers must figure out based on evidence collection techniques learned in the classroom.
"We've trained everybody in the proper collection and preservation and packaging of evidence in all the disciplines and then we put all that evidence into a mock crime scene," said Nick Stahlke, forensic science training coordinator.
A total of 28 law enforcement officers took part in the course. They were divided up into groups and spread out over six different mock crime scenes.
The teams are all processing homicide scenes because instructors suspect if they can process a homicide scene, they can process any kind of scene.
Team members took measurements, photographed and bagged evidence, and wrote down notes. The challenge is getting everything done, and in the proper order.
"We can't start taking pieces of evidence out until we have it photographed completely, until we have it measured, so that if we had to recreate this crime scene for a jury we would be able to place everything back in it in a one to one ratio," said UW-Madison Police Officer Heather Banuelos.
Stahlke said the goal is to provide the skills necessary for agencies to do the majority of the processing of crime scenes themselves.
"It lessens the burden on the crime laboratories for us to have to actually have to go out and process crime scenes," said Stahlke.
Because of the training, Stahlke added, the crime lab isn't being asked to respond to as many crime scenes as in the past.
Another bonus is law enforcement feels more confident working in the field, and officers are able to deliver a better product to the lab.
"Part of it's been a very good refresher, and the other part's been learning new things. So it's been a really good course," said Green Bay Police Detective Brian Schilt.
Each team had five hours to process a crime scene. Afterwards, the crime scene instructor evaluated their work, and gave pointers on any errors.
The cost to put on each course, paid by the state justice department, is about $10,000 to $15,000.
The U.S. Supreme Court is questioning whether an Appleton-based airline can be held liable for reporting one of its pilots as mentally unstable and potentially armed. Federal authorities pulled the pilot off a flight on which he was a …
Traffic is flowing again in the Neenah area after a morning crash.
Former Green Bay schools superintendent Gregory Maass is the new CEO/President of the Brown County United Way.
The Appleton Police Department is investigating a shooting at a downtown bar.
Oconto County officials are investigating what might have caused a shed fire.
An armed robbery suspect has life-threatening injuries after being shot in Fond du Lac County.