Leica Geosystems ScanStation deployed for fire scene reconstruction on A&E Real-Life Series, CRIME 360

(Norcross, Ga., 16 April 2008) A&E’s Real-Life series, CRIME 360 episode, ‘Trial by Fire,’ which aired April 3, 2008, followed detectives and forensic experts as they responded to a suspicious apartment fire with the charred body. With help of the Leica Geosystems ScanStation, a state-of-the-art forensic 3D laser scanner, forensic investigators recorded the scene gathering as much information as possible to help determine whether the fire was an accident, murder or suicide.

Forensic technicians initially scanned the bedroom where the body was found as well as the living room where there was evidence of a possible altercation, bloody cleaning supplies – and a visible shoe print. Meanwhile, the medical examiner found that the victim was killed by a gunshot to the head, not the fire.  Detectives returned to the scene to talk to the apartment landlord and residents, wondering if this was a burglary-gone-wrong or a personal attack from an angry relative. 

As more information is gathered, the detectives return to the virtual scene created by the ScanStation to evaluate possible scenarios, and with all the evidence gathered over the course of week, ultimately find the perpetrator.

The value of the ScanStation for fire scene reconstruction really became apparent in the aftermath of a California fire several years ago that started when a dead tree fell on a power line. When questions arose as to how the fire started, the State Fire Marshall’s office called in a local laser scanning consultant to map the area. Using data from a Leica Geosystems laser scanner, the agency was able to show that due to insufficient forest maintenance in the vicinity of power lines, a utility company was responsible for the subsequent fire.

The detailed fire scene reconstruction, enabled by the Leica Geosystems’ laser scanner, was instrumental in helping CAL FIRE recover over $10 million in fire suppression costs. Since this first application, CAL FIRE has used laser scanning technology to investigate a number of fire scenes throughout the state of California and elsewhere.

“Through “Crime 360” and our new forensic web site at http://www.leica-geosystems.com/us/forensic, we’re introducing law enforcement and public safety officials across the country to the benefits of this technology,” says Tony Grissim, Forensic Account Manager for Leica Geosystems. 

Leica Geosystems – when it has to be right
With close to 200 years of pioneering solutions to measure the world, Leica Geosystems products and services are trusted by professionals worldwide to help them capture, analyze, and present spatial information. Leica Geosystems is best known for its broad array of products that capture accurately, model quickly, analyze easily, and visualize and present spatial information.

Those who use Leica Geosystems products every day trust them for their dependability, the value they deliver, and the superior customer support. Based in Heerbrugg, Switzerland, Leica Geosystems is a global company with tens of thousands of customers supported by more than 3,500 employees in 28 countries and hundreds of partners located in more than 120 countries around the world. Leica Geosystems is part of the Hexagon Group, Sweden.

For further information please contact:

Leica Geosystems Inc.
Andre Ribeiro
Director of Marketing
Atlanta, GA 30092
United States

Phone: +1 (770) 326-9557
Fax: +1 (770) 447-0710
Email Contact


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