A case begins with the report of a crime. When a crime has been committed, a patrol officer takes the report and opens a case. The patrol officer conducts the initial investigation of the crime. If the patrol officer is unable to complete the investigation or if the crime is of a serious nature, the case is assigned to CID for investigation.
CID processes the crime scene when necessary. Detectives photograph the scene and collect evidence. The detective will familiarize himself with the case. They ask the questions who, what, when, where, why and how. The detective will interview any victims, witnesses or suspects that may have information. Detectives follow all possible leads, or information, while investigating a case. CID contacts any outside agencies or organizations that may be helpful in assisting with the investigation of the case. Several determining factors are used to prioritize the time in which it takes to begin the investigation. Investigation times vary on the particular factors of each case.
After detectives have completed their investigation several things may happen with the case. If there is sufficient evidence that a crime has been committed and a suspect is known, the case will be presented to the Lubbock County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution. If detectives follow all possible leads and it is not clear that a crime has been committed or the suspect is not known the case will be tabled. Tabling a case does not close the case, but detectives no longer actively investigate it unless further leads are developed on the case. If further leads are developed on the case detectives will follow the new leads. A case may be closed for several reasons such as the case having been prosecuted or the case is unfounded which means it was determined a crime was not committed.