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Ridgeland Campus hosts Gulf Coast HIDTA class

Pictured are (left to right) Ty Parker with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation in Jackson District, and Barry Stingley with the MBI in Holly Springs, participating in the crime scene documentation and investigative photography class held July 22-24 on the Ridgeland Campus of Holmes Community College. The course was sponsored by the Gulf Coast High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program and taught by Mark Bailey, chief of police at Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, Ala.Pictured are (left to right) Ty Parker with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation in Jackson District, and Barry Stingley with the MBI in Holly Springs, participating in the crime scene documentation and investigative photography class held July 22-24 on the Ridgeland Campus of Holmes Community College. The course was sponsored by the Gulf Coast High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program and taught by Mark Bailey, chief of police at Jefferson State Community College in Birmingham, Ala.

The Holmes Community College police department hosted a three-day crime scene documentation and investigative photography class July 22-24 on the Ridgeland Campus.

This free training course was a part of the Gulf Coast High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) program, which is open to all federal, state and local law enforcement personnel; criminal analysts; investigator assistants; counter-drug operation supervisors, and military personnel, both active and reserve. Trainees in the Gulf Coast HIDTA program come from Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee.

The course was hosted by Holmes CC's police department and taught by Mark Bailey, chief of police at Jefferson State Community College (JSCC) in Birmingham, Ala. Gulf Coast HIDTA, JSCC, and the Honorable Gregory Davis, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi, co-sponsored the training event.

"The purpose of this course was to teach our law enforcement officers and investigators how to properly photograph and diagram crime scenes, both indoors and outdoors, in the daytime and evening," Bailey said. "This hands-on program equipped participants with basic skills needed to document a crime scene correctly. I think it was very beneficial to all of those involved."

The class included a combination of lecture and practical exercises to reinforce the material presented. Participants learned about floor plan diagrams, exploded diagrams, camera nomenclature, automatic photography modes, manual photography settings, dim light photography, depth of field, surveillance photography and a variety of photographic techniques.

Participant Ashley Moulton, with the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation in Biloxi, said that she found the course to be extremely informative and thinks it will make her more efficient in her work.

"Chief Bailey did a great job of showing us little photography tricks, how to change our camera's settings, and just how to take all around better photos," Moulton said. "The practicums, which involved shooting mock scenes in the parking lot, were very helpful and I feel like I will be more beneficial to my unit now."

For more information on Gulf Coast HIDTA programs, visit http://training.gchidta.org/.

For more information on continuing education courses sponsored by Holmes CC's police department, contact Chief Jeff Johns, director of public safety, at (601) 605-3363 or jjohns@holmescc.edu.