MAY 2017 - IAPE Monthly Newsletter
Ask Joe...
Each month, IAPE's primary instructor, Joe Latta, answers one of your questions. Consider writing us if you have a question that needs an answer. We would love to hear from you.
To submit a question for Joe  Contact Us
Dear Joe,
I am having an issue with explaining the reasoning behind some of our current practices and would appreciate your input.  When our department receives any type of pill, we require the officer to itemize these pills on a "pill count" form.  This form details the type of pill, the amount of each type of pill, and is signed by two employees. 

The issue is brought up as to how these items should be booked into the property room when they are being retained for safekeeping or to be destroyed.  I am aware that all items that are different should be given a different tag/property number.  However, if there are several types of pills, all found in the same area, booked in for the same person, does each different type of pill actually need its own number?  With  the department requiring a pill count form and there being no possibility of releasing these pill separately, our officers are questioning our current practice of requiring all items to have their own number.  I was curious to your opinion on this subject. 

Austin Countem

Dear Austin Countem,
Great question with no great answer! The first place I looked was in our standards to find out that we have no standards on counting or submitting pills. My next course of action was to go to the IAPE Resource Page  where we have dozens of Lab Submission Manuals, etc. After reviewing each of them, I found most were completely absent of any standards for submission of pills. 

Washington State Crime 
All drug evidence shall be weighed prior to and after packaging, including pills. Different types of drugs shall be weighed and packaged individually. Counting pills is not required. The weight must be reported on the Property/Evidence Report (3000-110-096). 

Wisconsin Physical Hand book
Document the contents of the medicine cabinet. For prescription drugs, include the prescription dates, the amount prescribed (e.g., number of pills) and amount of medicine remaining.

Texas DPS
Agency Item #: The agency item number associated with the evidence # of items: The total number of evidence items (Examples: number of pills, bundles, cartridge cases, swabs, etc.) 

Additionally, I checked with three of our Board Members from Tucson PD AZ, Charlotte Mecklenburg PD, NC, and Minneapolis, MN, whose responses were varied. 

Below is a response from Kerstin Hammarberg from Minneapolis:
"Here in Minneapolis our policy is to count the number of pills as often as possible. For our department it is allowable to have all prescription-type medications in one evidence bag. So, in the below example, we would list the number of pills, then the pill description, and whether or not they were in some type of pill container. All would be itemized on one inventory number and put into one narcotics bag for storage.
In my world it would look like this:
Line #1 - 14 white round pills marked IP205 from RX bottle - labeled Stanley Smith
Line #2 - 3 blue capsules marked GG456 from RX bottle - labeled Stanley Smith
Line #3 - 45 yellow capsules marked GG128 from RX bottle - labeled Stanley Smith
Line #4 - 5 white round pills marked WATSON 357 - no container
We would then be able to release lines 1-3 because they are clearly marked and belong to Stanley Smith. Line 4 would not be released because we could not verify ownership nor prescription. They would be destroyed."
As you can see from what we say in the class, no one does it the same. I can say what you are doing will never get anyone in trouble. If you look at the headlines, pain pills are the leading items being stolen from Property Rooms. I would encourage everyone to count pills by types whenever possible.


Headline of the Month

Ohio Police Officer Nearly Loses His Life After Accidentally Overdosing On Fentanyl After A 
Traffic Stop
May 16, 2017

An Ohio police officer is recovering after accidentally overdosing on fentanyl following a traffic stop where the powerful drug was believed to have been found. East Liverpool Police pulled over a vehicle officers believed was involved in a drug deal. After arresting two males, police searched the car where they found white powder spread throughout the vehicle. the incident nearly became fatal when Green returned to the police station and discovered some white powder on his uniform.

  Photo of the Month
Bicycle Storage


The Property and Evidence By The Book 2nd Edition is the most comprehensive book ever written about the management of the property and evidence function. This edition is over 400 pages of valuable information on how to operate and manage your evidence room. The revised addition is 30% more in total content than the previous edition.
Property and Evidence By The Book 2nd Edition is written around the IAPE Certification Standards along with definitions, explanations, concepts, forms, photos, case studies and policy elements.

This book provides several different systems to use when organizing your Evidence Room. Being organized can prevent loss, damage or mishandling of valuable evidence. Learn how to properly package, label, and store items by categories. Also ideas for using color coding and much more. The author is a retired Police Lieutenant who served 30 years in law enforcement including over 5 years managing the Property and Evidence Unit.

Got a Job? 
Need a Job?

IAPE is delighted to announce that we have a new section for posting a job announcement or checking job opportunities.

2017 Classes

June 6 - 7, 2017
June 12 - 13, 2017
Class Full
June 21 - 22, 2017
Class Full
June 27 - 28, 2017
July 11 - 12, 2017
Only 6 Seats Left
July 26 - 27, 2017
August 7 - 8, 2017
Only 19 Seats Left
August 14 - 15, 2017
Only 18 Seats Left
August 22 - 23, 2017
  August 29 - 30, 2017
Only 9 Seats Left
September 12 - 13, 2017
NMPET Conference
September 12 - 13, 2017

September 21, 2107
September 26 - 27, 2017
October 18 - 19, 2017
October 30 - 31, 2017
November 7 - 8, 2017
November 14 - 15, 2017
Burbank, CA
December 4 - 5, 2017

2018 Classes 
Las Vegas, NV
February 26  - 27, 2018

Kenosha, WI
March 28 - 29, 2018

Can't Travel?
IAPE also offers
Save money on lodging, meals
and transportation.
To learn more about the IAPE's  ONLINE TRAINING 
or to register please visit:
Call for details on
 sponsoring a class!

New feature on the  
IAPE Website!

 All of our past newsletters are now available and searchable by topic!


Property Room


IAPE Property & Evidence Room Accreditation
Increase your value!
IAPE Property and Evidence Room Accreditation© is available for all law enforcement agencies who have responsibility for property and evidence received and maintained in the normal scope of their operation.