RECOMMENDED METHODS FOR HANDLING SPECIFIC ITEMS OF EVIDENCE
Dried stains on smooth surfaces
Collect portion of furniture bearing surfaces of furniture stain in original
pattern, if possible; otherwise, scrape with pocket knife or putty knife,
removing as little of the finished surface as possible.
Insert two or more fingers into large mouth vessels. Place the index
fingers on the top and bottom of small mouth vessels. Do not
contaminate or spill any substances in the vessel that may have evidence
Use your fingers or use tweezers with taped ends. Avoid damage to
rifling marks on the circumference. Place in a pillbox.
Pick up at the open end with tweezers. Avoid scratching. Place in a
Dried stains on a floor
Collect portion of floor bearing stain in original pattern, if possible;
otherwise, remove by gouging deeper than the stain with putty knife,
wood chisel, or other necessary tool. Place in pillbox or larger similar
PREPARING DA FORM 4137
You must record each item of evidence that you acquire on a DA Form 4137. Prepare an original and three
copies. Entries should be typed or printed legibly in ink. When evidence is received from a person, give the last
copy to him or her as a receipt. When evidence is found, rather than received from a person, give the last copy to
the responsible officer at the scene. The original and the first two copies go to the evidence custodian. He keeps
the original and first copy for his records. The second copy is returned to you for inclusion in the case file.
Complete the administrative section of the custody document, stating clearly how the evidence was
obtained. In the Description of Articles section, describe each item of evidence, accurately and in detail. Cite the
model, serial number, condition, and any unusual marks or scratches. Enter the quantity of an item that is hard to
measure or subject to change, like glass fragments or crushed tablets, using terms like "Approximately 50," or
"Undetermined," or "Unknown."
The Chain of Custody section provides information about the release and receipt of evidence. From initial
acquisition of evidence to its final disposition, every change in custody must be recorded in this section. The