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“…Data from the Leica laser scanner is automatically imported into Leica Cyclone as I’m scanning (a crash or crime scene). During the scanning, I’m actually seeing the point cloud populate. Cyclone is on a separate laptop or desktop computer and can control the scanner. I set the parameters on my laptop so that scanning can be accomplished. Also, the beauty of this process is that if, as I’m looking at the scanned data, I’ve missed something, I can go back and scan it. Cyclone takes all that data and presents it in one viewable atmosphere that the user can navigate via multiple views.”
-Detective David DeLeeuw, Ocean County, New Jersey, Sheriff’s Office Crime Investigation Unit

“…We use MapScenes to capture data and produce 2D line drawings because it’s quick, effective and easy. We also use MapScenes to create a 3D model for accident reconstruction and to perform analysis. MapScenes is very effective for doing this.”
-Jason Fries, CEO, 3D-Forensic, San Francisco, California 

“…We had a week’s worth of training on the MapScenes software. At first, when I was told it would be this long, it seemed like a lot of time. But there are a lot of capabilities (in the software). There are so many things we can use it for and that are beneficial for our crime scenes, such as a 3D view. We made a 3D measurement of a car where there was homicide in it. There were bullet holes in the doors and windows, and a victim in the car. Using the software, we could insert trajectory rods (for the bullets) and make the drawing in 3D. You can bring all of this up on the computer, print it out, and view in a courtroom. This is one of the aspects that really stood out.”

 “…There are so many things we can use MapScenes for, and that are beneficial for our crime scenes, such as a 3D view. We made a 3D measurement of a car where there was a homicide in it. There were bullet holes in the doors and windows, and a victim in the car. Using the software, we could insert trajectory rods (for the bullets) and make the drawing in 3D. You can bring all of this up on the computer, print it out, view in a courtroom.”
-Detective Sgt. Pete Thompson, King County, California, Sheriff’s Office

Bob Galvin | Monday, August 11, 2014


Too often, law enforcement agencies purchase advanced equipment but provide for minimal or no training on it. As a result, the equipment is used minimally or hardly at all. After a while, even a tool's most basic functions become lost for the user. This problem certainly applies to the important aspect of crime and crash investigation.

Fortunately, many crash and crime scene reconstructionists have also become expert trainers and are strong believers in continuing education for less experienced investigators who must learn the basics of mapping and diagramming scenes. Crash investigation training in particular is not only crucial, but must be continually applied if those trained are to become proficient and the best they can be.

Training Driven by Mapping Technology
Changes in technology for crash investigation work are one of the driving challenges that prompt law enforcement agencies to send investigators to training classes. One of the biggest issues is that students taking these classes work for agencies that use a wide and varied range of technology tools—from tape measures to total stations to laser scanners. "It's tough to teach a computer-aided design (CAD) crash drawing program, total stations and data collection all in a 40-hour week," says Mike Selves, crash investigation trainer and owner of Collision Forensic Solutions in Omaha, Neb. "That's why I've always tailored my training to be a two-week class—one week is a 40-hour course in CAD drawing and the second week is on how to use a total station with evidence recording software."

Law enforcement officers usually get some degree of instruction on crash investigations when attending the police academy. But it's not nearly adequate for tackling complex crash scenes requiring detailed diagrams, especially if these diagrams may be needed for court presentation.

Effective Courtroom Presentation Is the Goal
A longer crash investigation course aloows for an essential ingredient: more hands-on training with mapping and diagramming crash scenes. But another critical goal is to prepare students to present and defend their crash diagrams in a courtroom. Just becoming familiar with software functionality is not enough, Selves argues. Students must learn to accurately map a scene by actually going out and measuring a mock scene as part of the class, unless a real one suddenly becomes available. "This is why we stress the two-week training course, because they need to make sure they get everything [all scene evidence] through court," Selves says. "They need to make sure there is a chronological order of how the measurements were obtained and what they did with them once they processed the data."

In 2013, Det. Sgt. Pete Thompson with the Kings County (Calif.) Sheriff's Office acquired a Leica Total Station and the MapScenes Forensic CAD 2013 crash and crime scene diagramming software. He took a two-week training class from Joel Salinas, a trained California traffic crash reconstructionist. In December 2013, he needed to map and diagram a crime scene involving a shooting, in which a person was fatally shot while sitting in a car. There were bullet holes in the car's doors and windows.

Using MapScenes Forensic CAD, Thompson was able to insert trajectory rods (representing the bullets) in the holes and make the drawing in 3D. "You could bring all of this up on the computer, print it out and view it in the courtroom," he says. "This all would show specific evidence, because people lie, but the evidence doesn't." Thompson learned how to use Forensic CAD to establish any measurement and the distances between evidence items on the drawing. He was able to show different layers on his diagram—of a particular roadway, vehicle or body; document crime scene evidence as a separate layer and provide labels for evidence items.

Software Features Save Time in Collecting Evidence Data
Along with these capabilities comes big time savings. When Thompson and other investigators measured a scene in early 2013 where a large fight had occurred and several shots were fired; it took several hours to map the scene using a Rolatape measuring wheel. If the Total Station had been available, the scene could have been measured in 20–30 minutes.

In the training class that Thompson took, students spent several days creating mock crime scenes. But a real crime scene also became available, involving a homicide in an orchard where a body had been dumped. "We were able to use this scene for measuring and documenting," Thompson says. "Now, everybody on my team has the capability to use the total station and mapping software as a result of the training class."

Can students actually learn enough in just one two-week course to become proficient at crash reconstruction? According to Salinas, the California crash reconstruction trainer, this really depends on the skill of the student and how much they use the equipment. "If you're out using the equipment a couple times a month, you're going to take what we taught you and build on that," he says. "If you put the equipment down and you don't build on your skills, you may need a refresher course."

News Center / Evidence Recorder 10 Released
« on: September 16, 2014, 12:23:32 PM »
Map Crime and Crash Scenes Faster and Add Video with MapScenes Evidence Recorder 10   

The newest version of MapScenes Evidence Recorder includes powerful video streaming capabilities and accelerates project startup and instrument configuration for an instant productivity boost on every scene.

(West Kelowna, BC, Canada – September 12, 2014) – MapScenes Systems, the leading developer of accident scene mapping and reconstruction software, announces the release of Evidence Recorder 10, the next generation of the world’s best-selling evidence collection software built specifically for the professional reconstructionist.
The latest release offers improvements in the following areas:
  • Powerful Video Streaming – Visually define scan areas when using instruments with integrated scanning capabilities, like the Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation, and automatically transfer and export point cloud data. For 32-bit Windows PCs and tablets.
  • Automatic Instrument Reconnection – Improve your productivity by allowing the software to automatically reconnect to the previous instrument when the application first starts up or after a connection has been dropped.
  • Streamlined Project Creation – Improve work efficiency with centralized project settings that can be set as a default for future use. This combined with instrument reconnection allows you to create a new project and go to map view with only two clicks.
  • Faster Bluetooth Connections – Easily switch between instruments with a new Bluetooth Device Manager that stores device information.
  • Advanced Export Options – Define custom formats and unlimited fields and in the ASCII export screen.
  • And much more – It is highly recommended that current and new users review the full release notes on the MapScenes website.
The already long list of supported coordinate systems, geoids, instruments, and data collectors has been expanded in the newest version of Evidence Recorder, making it easy to integrate into any existing forensic operation.
"For Evidence Recorder 10, our entire focus has been on streamlining existing workflows to improve productivity for new and existing users," said Jason Poitras, General Manager of MapScenes. "All of the workflow improvements substantially lower the learning curve and make it much easier to use day in and day out."

To learn more or download a free demo, visit

News Center / MapScenes Forensic CAD 2013 Released
« on: August 06, 2013, 01:01:32 PM »
PRESS RELEASE – For immediate release

MapScenes Forensic CAD 2013
WEST KELOWNA, British Columbia – August 6, 2013

MapScenes Systems, the leading developer of accident scene mapping and reconstruction software, announces the 2013 release of MapScenes Forensic CAD – a full-featured desktop mapping tool used by forensic investigators and accident scene reconstructionists.

New capabilities include:
  • The MapScenes product family has been streamlined by consolidating our Forensic CAD, Capture, and PointCloud applications into one single product
  • New presentation tools like viewing georeferenced points in Google Maps or exporting georeferenced scenes to Google Earth
  • New productivity tools that will simplify common tasks that our users perform every day; like converting their drawings between different units, or cloning vehicle symbols onto key points with different positions and orientations
  • Support for the new Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation including full support for digitizing scenes directly within high-definition scans

Along-side this update MapScenes has also released two add-on modules; an animation module for compelling animated reenactments, and a point cloud module for extrapolating data and animating within point clouds. The release of Forensic CAD 2013 along with these modules signifies the discontinuation of the stand-alone products "MapScenes Capture" and "MapScenes PointCloud"

Pricing and Availability
Pricing of all MapScenes products have received extensive revisions, nearly all of which trend downwards, making MapScenes the most competitively-priced forensic mapping software on the market today. MapScenes Forensic CAD 2013 is available immediately from MapScenes Systems as well as our authorized resellers and distributors. Prices and additional information regarding MapScenes products can be found at

About MapScenes Systems and MicroSurvey Software Inc.
The MapScenes System (consisting of Evidence Recorder and Forensic CAD with powerful animation and point cloud add-on modules) is manufactured by MicroSurvey Software Inc.; experts in data collection and diagramming for over 25 years. MicroSurvey produces the most advanced crime scene and accident reconstruction mapping software systems in the industry.

Sales contact: Michael Bachinski, MapScenes Business Development Manager ([email protected])

Media contact: Jareb Coupe, Director of Marketing
([email protected])

MapScenes Systems

News Center / MapScenes Support for New Leica Nova MultiStation
« on: July 09, 2013, 09:11:58 AM »

MicroSurvey CAD Ultimate 2013, MicroSurvey CAD Studio 2013 & MapScenes PointCloud 2013: Intuitive 2D and 3D data management for surveyors and public safety professionals

(West Kelowna, BC, Canada / Las Vegas, USA, June 5, 2013) – MicroSurvey, the makers of MicroSurvey CAD and the MapScenes System, announces the release of three new software versions optimized to make full use of datasets from the new Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation. MicroSurvey CAD Ultimate 2013, MicroSurvey CAD Studio 2013 and MapScenes PointCloud 2013 provide complete point cloud and Leica Nova MS 50 support in an intuitive interface that allows users to quickly and easily integrate 3D point cloud data into their workflows.

MicroSurvey CAD Ultimate 2013, the complete desktop survey and design software solution for surveyors, contractors and engineers, provides a familiar field-to-finish CAD survey solution with the Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation. With just a few clicks, users can easily import datasets from the Leica Nova MS50 complete with all TPS measurements, pictures, points and scan data. For users who need to enhance their data visualizations with fly-through movies and animations, MicroSurvey CAD Studio 2103 includes all the functionality of MicroSurvey CAD Ultimate plus a powerful animation module capable of creating stunning movies.

MapScenes 2013, already the most powerful drafting, point cloud data visualization and animation tool for forensic investigators, accident scene reconstructionists and other public safety professionals, now includes the ability to take advantage of the rich 3D datasets captured by the Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation. MapScenes 2013 lets the user quickly and easily draw in the point cloud view for extremely fast, accurate linework as well as use the scan data from the Leica Nova MS50 in animations for accurate and compelling reconstructions.

MicroSurvey CAD Ultimate 2013, MicroSurvey CAD Studio 2103 and MapScenes 2013 are immediately available as optional software packages with the Leica Nova MS50 MultiStation. For more information, visit or

Law Officer Magazine recently published an article by Bob Galvin called "A new piece of evidence".

Click here to read

Bob Galvin wrote an excellent article on how technology tools help drive higher accuracy of crash scene documentation in the latest issue of Sheriff Magazine.

Click here to read

It's not often you see an article on crime scene reconstruction in a surveyor magazine. But, Daniel C. Brown wrote an article in American Surveyor's issue that is well worth the read.

This article is from the perspective of the RCMP, utilizing RTK GPS units for their evidence & data collection; a secret of accuracy and speed that land surveyors have latched onto.

Click here to read

Articles & Case Studies / Custom 3D Mapping Library for free
« on: December 06, 2012, 01:21:02 PM »
Custom 3D Mapping Library provided by CSI Mapping.

This 3D Mapping Library is free to law enforcement that use MapScenes Evidence Recorder software.
Click here to view.

Articles & Case Studies / Increasing your efficiency with spider mapping
« on: December 06, 2012, 12:49:43 PM »
An article by CSI Mapping about how Evidence Recorder and MapScenes are ideal for deploying multiple teams to a mass casualty incident. It is a method termed Spider Mapping.

This guide is provided to Law Enforcement agencies worldwide as a step by step instruction to Spider Mapping. It is uniquely designed to make use of Micro Survey’s Evidence Recorder and MapScenes Forensic CAD software.

Click here to read...

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