Investigations Bureau

The Joplin Police Department Investigations Bureau is made up of a Captain, two Sergeants, three Corporals, 19 investigators when fully staffed, a civilian investigation assistant, and an civilian evidence technician. Additionally, two investigators are attached to the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force and one corporal to an FBI task force. The Joplin Police Department also has a Special Investigations Unit that is made up of one Corporal and two investigators who investigate a variety of crime and work in an undercover fashion at times. Detectives are also members of the Tri-State Major Case Squad. The squad is comprised of numerous investigators from Missouri, Oklahoma, and Kansas. When the squad is activated, investigators combine their efforts to solve major cases within their respective agencies.

Crimes Investigated

The Investigations Bureau is primarily responsible for the investigation of major felony crimes such as homicide, aggravated assault, sexual assault, burglary, robbery, forgery, and fraud. Investigators in this bureau also look into child abuse and neglect hotline calls, vehicle thefts, thefts from vehicles, larcenies, domestic violence, and drug violations. Additionally, in 2009, one investigator was added through a grant to the Investigations Bureau to investigate cybercrimes with a focus on exploited children. The investigators assigned to these crimes have developed advanced levels of expertise through specialized training and years of experience working on complex cases with colleagues at the federal, state, and local levels. The Joplin Police Department has since added a second cybercrimes investigator.

Investigating complex major crimes requires the dedication, cooperation, and assistance of a variety of individuals and units. Investigators work closely with patrol officers to identify witnesses, preserve major crime scenes, gather critical information, and develop leads. They also work closely with officials from other agencies to solve crime that inevitably crosses jurisdictional lines.