Identification Division Commander – Captain Mike Bell
The Identification Division is a unique division within the Sheriff’s Office. Data suggests the division was created around 1969 and was tasked with the responsibility for maintaining the agency’s criminal records. The unit is currently the main repository for all Sheriff’s Office offense reports and attachments, and also the keeper of property and evidence collected and submitted by agency personnel- requiring the management of four “property rooms” containing approximately more than 20,000 items.
In 2010 the division adopted the secondary name of Forensic Services Unit; a division within the Support Services Bureau. The unit consists of six Forensic Investigators, a Property/Evidence Deputy, one reserve deputy, and three records personnel. Forensic Investigators are responsible for the documentation and analysis of major crime scenes such as homicides, suicides, armed robbery, shootings and questionable deaths. The unit is recognized throughout Galveston County for its advanced crime scene training, and is often requested to assist other agencies with their major crime scenes. Additionally, Investigators are called upon to present expert testimony in State and Federal courts.
The unit currently has three graduates from the University of Tennessee’s National Forensic academy, as well as one Certified Senior Crime Scene Analysts, two Certified Crime Scene Analysts and one Certified Crime Scene Investigator by the International Association for Identification (IAI). Additionally, three personnel are Certified Property/Evidence Room Technicians by the Texas Association of Property and Evidence Inventory Technicians (TAPEIT).