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Our People and Capabilities

Our People and Capabilities

Evidence Response Team member rapelling down a pine wall
Since crime scenes can be anywhere,
our evidence teams are trained
to reach tough places.

Our people in Detroit possess a mix of talents and experience that enable us to help protect you, your families, and your workplaces from a full range of national security threats and major crime problems.

Our employees are not only special agents, but also a variety of specialized professionals such as intelligence and financial analysts, investigative specialists, support services technicians, language specialists, paralegals, electronics technicians, and security experts.

Our strength lies in our investigations—the very heart of our operations—and in the collection, analysis, and sharing of intelligence that drives and supports those investigations both locally and nationally. In every case, we work to objectively gather the facts and to develop evidence that can stand up in a court of law. To do that, we can interview witnesses, run undercover operations, analyze financial records, map and manage crime scenes, develop informants, make arrests, conduct surveillance, and gather information and intelligence from around the globe. Our cases today are often complex and multi-faceted, involving a range of public and private sector partners and covering multiple jurisdictions.

Among our specialized capabilities:

  • Evidence recovery and processing: In Detroit, we have three eight-member Evidence Response Teams made up of special agents and other specialists who are sent to crime scenes to secure the area and exhaustively gather and process physical evidence. Each team member has been extensively trained. They can take photographs, diagram and survey scenes, gather fingerprints, analyze blood stains and splatters, determine bullet trajectories, recover DNA, gather and process the smallest of clues, and more. The teams coordinate with the FBI Laboratory and assist local law enforcement upon request.
  • Computer forensics: We also have a Computer Analysis and Response Team, or CART, that applies this same evidentiary concept to the digital world. These forensic examiners are experts at retrieving evidence from a vast array of digital devices, at processing that evidence in a way that maintains its integrity for use in court, and at presenting the results of their findings to investigators.
  • Tactical support and crisis response: We have a SWAT (Specialized Weapons and Tactics) team that can storm barricaded buildings and vehicles, breach locks and other structures, arrest armed and dangerous criminals, rescue hostages, patrol areas and provide security, navigate tough terrains by climbing and rappelling, use special techniques to stop fleeing cars, and conduct site surveys for special events. The team is highly trained and heavily equipped, with expertise in a variety of weapons, including pistols, assault and sniper rifles, and shotguns. We also have a Hostage Rescue Team designed specifically to locate and liberate victims in hostage situations.
  • Bomb recovery and analysis: We have four certified special agent bomb technicians (SABTs) in Detroit who have “render safe” authority. Each is trained and equipped to respond to, conduct diagnostic evaluations of, and render safe suspected improvised explosive devices (IEDs). They often respond to suspected IEDs with one of the 17 state and local bomb squads. The special agent bomb technicians also routinely provide relevant training to state and local bomb squads and numerous other federal, state, and local law enforcement, fire service, and emergency management personnel. Our bomb techs support federal, state, and local investigations regarding actual and attempted bombings, stolen explosives, and the destruction of recovered items. They also participate in national and international operation deployments that involve significant investigations, specialized training, and special event support. Information gleaned from these missions is shared through established networks with both foreign and domestic response partners.
  • Hazardous materials: We have a 16-member Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) Response Team. Each member is trained to respond to terrorist attacks and criminal incidents involving the preservation and collection of evidence in a hazardous environment—chemical, biological, or radiological. They also work with local officials as well as HAZMAT and WMD experts at FBI Headquarters.
  • Translation: Our group of language specialists can translate written documents and audio files in a variety of languages for terrorism, espionage, and criminal cases. They also join agents on cases, translating during live interviews and even during undercover operations.

For more information on the FBI and its capabilities, see our About Us webpage.