GSS International

Global Support Services in GeoForensic and Specialist Search

Case Work

Below are several examples that provide ‘proof of concept’ for the training and deployment of Forensic Canine resources: 
The Victim Recovery Dog will respond to human decomposition odour to locate primary deposition sites, and secondary trace transference of odour to provide intelligence / evidence. 
The Human Blood Detection Dog will respond to dried human blood to secure evidence for recovery by Forensic Crime Scene Examiners and Laboratory technicians. 
In addition to the cases described below these resources have been pivotal in the examination of crime scenes and recovery of evidence where missing persons have never turned up alive and investigations remain open. 

  • Missing woman, reported by partner. He was a craftsman at a large building site. The site was searched and the remains of the woman were recovered from a grave identified by the canine. Subsequent searches for evidence produced numerous positive responses all of which were associated with the vehicle used for transportation and the tools used during the burial process.  

  • A protracted search of large building provided canine responses on the ground floor. The flooring was removed and human bones and teeth were recovered buried in the ground 3-4 feet under the original flooring. 

  • Missing elderly women, investigation revealed interest in a local man who had reported his vehicle stolen which was burnt - out prior to recovery. A search of the vehicle provided positive canine responses. Laboratory testing of burnt material recovered from the vehicle revealed the victim’s DNA. Canine search of the area around the suspects home produced a positive response to the victims grave on a river bank.  

  • In a cold case search for the remains of a child in a wilderness environment the canines were operated with the handlers blind to the search outcome. The canines identified the exact location of three graves from where children had been recovered 40 years previously. 

  • The wife of a farm owner was reported missing. The subsequent search of the house and garage provided canine positive responses to the carpet near to the patio doors leading to the garage where the canine responded to an off road farm vehicle. The body of the woman was later found buried deep into the farm land. 

  • Cold case missing person investigation. An area of interest was searched which resulted in the canine responding to a water filled hole left when a tree fell. Subsequent excavation of the area located the body of the victim buried 70 feet away from the canine response location. The grave was filled with water. This is an example of odor migration via ground water. 

  • A child was reported abducted during a ‘carjacking’. Subsequent searches produced canine responses to the child's bedroom, the father’s vehicle, child's car seat and blanket. At trial the responses were corroborated by anecdotal witness evidence and the father was convicted. 

  • A police officer’s reported his wife as missing. Subsequent searches and screening of his personal property produced several canine responses. He was convicted of homicide and the body of his wife was found some months later.

  • Family child abduction. Searches provided positive responses to the suspects’ vehicle, in his home and to discarded property nearby. The victim’s blood was recovered from the home and the child's grave was located within ½ mile of the house. 

  • Serial killing of children, investigation led to the identification of a suspect living outdoors. A nearby large derelict warehouse was searched. Canine responses provided the location of two buried children.

  • Reported suicide was disproved through canine responses during blind searches to body recovery site and master bedroom, scene of homicide. 

  • Following the report of a missing person, a search of a small Island provided canine responses on the beach where a body was recovered having been buried in the sand. 

  • Reports of gangland killings were investigated and subsequent canine searches led to the canine identification of multiple graves where bodies were recovered. 

  • 40-year-old cold case gangland killing. A blind canine search of a garage containing over 75 vehicles provided positive responses only to one vehicle. The vehicle was known by investigators to be involved in the kidnapping and homicide.  

  • Following the report of a child abduction a suspect was identified. The suspects’ vehicle was screened by the VRD who responded positively. The victim was found deceased in woodland after the suspect gave the location of the deposition whilst the search was being undertaken. The suspect admitted the homicide and to transporting the cadaver in the vehicle to the deposition site. 

  • A child was reported missing by her parents. An extensive 2 day search was undertaken by S&R volunteers including canine teams that was unsuccessful. The company canine resources were deployed which located the sub surface deposition of the child within 10 minutes.

  • Two children left alone in the family home. The son reported an intruder had stabbed and killed his sister. The Forensic Canines searched the house and grounds, a screened house contents as removed. Blood evidence recovered by the canines provided such intelligence to suggest the brother was responsible for the death. He subsequently admitted his involvement. 

  • On immediate response to a stabbing homicide scene the HBDD searched for and located the murder weapon hidden in bushes within 10 minutes. 

  • On immediate response to an arson, homicide and rape of an elderly woman the HBDD conducted a search of the neighbourhood and recovered several victim blood stained items, the property of the offender. 

  • On several occasions, items of interest have been brought to the laboratory by investigators for canine screening. The canines have accurately identified items that have been proven to be associated with serious crime.