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> NJSP Home  | > Division Org.  | > Investigations Branch
Investigations Section
Investigations Section
  Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau
  Child Protection and Cyber Crimes Bureau
  Criminal Investigation Bureau
  Special Services Bureau
  Applicant Investigation and Compliance Bureau

Major James Fallon - Section Commander

The Investigations Section is made up of the following Bureaus:

Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau

The Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau is tasked with spearheading New Jersey's war on drugs with strategic new initiatives designed to target all levels of narcotics trafficking in the Garden State, from street level distribution networks which impact upon the quality of life of New Jersey residents to wholesale importation and transportation operations controlled by foreign drug lords. At the same time, the State Police recognized the need to more effectively marshal resources from within the Division to combat both traditional organized criminal groups as well as the growing number of emerging nontraditional organized criminal groups.

The Bureau is aligned into five specialized Units which are strategically designed to ensure that the Division of State Police effectively and efficiently complies with all departmental policies and directives as they pertain to narcotics and organized crime enforcement. These specialized Units include the Organized Crime Unit, the Narcotics North Unit, the Narcotics Central Unit, the Narcotics South Unit and Joint Operations Unit.

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Narcotics Central Unit

The Narcotics Central Unit is tasked with the responsibility of addressing each and every level of the illicit narcotics trade with the intention to take each respective investigation to the highest possible level. In areas of State Police responsibility, the unit continues to be committed to an enforcement program with support of respective station detectives and necessary uniformed personnel.

One of the most successful programs of the Narcotics Central Unit is the Domestic Cannabis Eradication and Suppression Program (DCE/SP). The program receives supplemental funding in the form of a federal grant which supports the operation of the program. The Domestic Cannabis Eradication and Suppression Program coordinates and oversees indoor/outdoor marijuana cultivation investigations throughout the State, as well as the development of informants to conduct their own investigations regarding marijuana cultivation sites. A regard system has been implemented in conjunction with this tipline.

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Narcotics North Unit

The Narcotics North Unit, conducts investigations of individuals and organizations engaging in the wholesale importation and distribution of narcotics in the northern New Jersey metropolitan area. Their focus is the identification, disruption, and dismantling of wholesale importation and transportation networks which supply large quantities of narcotics to local distribution markets. These investigations not only target the narcotics traffickers, but also those who facilitate the laundering of the drug proceeds.

Northern New Jersey High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force

A cooperative state and federal initiative which targets heroin trafficking and it's corresponding money laundering activities in the northern New Jersey counties of Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Passaic and Union. The HIDTA Task Force receives funding from the Office of National Drug Control Policy and is staffed by personnel from various federal, state, county, and local law enforcement agencies.

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Narcotics South Unit

The Narcotics South Unit, conducts investigations of all levels of narcotics trafficking from street level sales to wholesale importation and distribution. In areas of state police responsibility, the unit continues to provide enforcement of narcotics violations in conjunction with station personnel and county prosecutor’s offices. The unit has recently deployed a significant portion of its assets to the Camden Anti-Crime Partnership, a multi-jurisdictional task force with a long term strategy designed to address the most problematic areas of criminal activity in the city.

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Organized Crime Unit

The Organized Crime Unit conducts investigations of individuals and groups which are engaged in traditional and nontraditional organized criminal activities. These investigations target the illicit activities of individuals affiliated with traditional organized crime families, including loansharking, extortion, bookmaking, and racketeering. In addition, a growing number of ethnic criminal groups present unique challenges to law enforcement.

The political, economic, and social changes occurring in the former Soviet Union and eastern block countries are providing significant opportunities for Russian organized crime groups to expand their influence in New Jersey and the surrounding metropolitan area. The densely populated and close-knit Asian communities of northern New Jersey are fertile grounds for Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and Vietnamese crime syndicates.

The investigative expertise of members of the Organized Crime Unit ensures the prompt and appropriate enforcement of violations of New Jersey's Criminal Code, especially violations pertaining to the Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) statute. In addition, Unit members provide assistance to other federal, state, county, and local law enforcement authorities who are engaged in similar investigations.

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Joint Operations Unit

The Division of State Police created within the Narcotics and Organized Crime Bureau, the Joint Operations Unit, whose primary mission is to conduct investigations concerning the use of commercial motor vehicles in large scale illegal narcotics trafficking operations. The Joint Operations Unit consists of squads that investigate the illicit trends in the freight hauling industry by independent truck owner/operators and by the major freight forwarding businesses. Unit members are part of a Federal Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force that allows investigations to cross state boundaries without regard to jurisdictional issues. The Marijuana Eradication Squad investigates the domestic cultivation of cannabis within New Jersey's borders. The Unit conducts post seizure analysis of out of state narcotics interdiction to determine any connection to New Jersey persons, businesses, or locations. The Joint Operations Unit also conducts an annual Domestic Cannabis Eradication and Suppression School. A toll free telephone number, (888) 798-9333 which citizens can utilize to provide tips regarding marijuana cultivation is available.

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Child Protection and Cyber Crime Bureau

The following units make up the bureau:

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High Technology Crimes and Investigations Support Unit

Related Links
Crime & TechnologyCrime & Technology

The High Technology Crimes and Investigations Support Unit is comprised of both enlisted and civilian personnel. The members of this Unit conduct proactive and reactive investigations in which computers, telecommunications equipment or other advanced technology is used to facilitate a criminal act or are the objects of the attack. Unit personnel provide investigative and technical assistance to law enforcement agencies, throughout New Jersey, in the course of criminal investigations. They also examine seized computers for evidence of criminal activity. Training is also provided to Police Officers throughout the State on topics such as: computer crime investigations and the seizure and preservation of electronic evidence. Other training is provided to civic, business, and educational organizations regarding computers and safety on the Internet. Unit personnel have also been requested to review proposed changes to laws related to computer crimes and submit appropriate recommendations to the Legislature.

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Missing Persons Unit

More Information...

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Cyber Crimes Unit

Information Coming Soon ...

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Violent Crime Analysis Unit

New Jersey Violent Crime Analysis Program (NJ ViCAP)The New Jersey State Police Violent Crime Analysis Unit serves as an investigative support and information resource center for the law enforcement community. The squad manages the New Jersey Violent Crime Analysis Program (NJ ViCAP), formerly known as the Homicide Evaluation and Assessment Tracking (HEAT) program. NJ ViCAP is a computer-assisted investigative tool which links violent crimes through comparison of specifics such as date, location, modus operandi, victimology, offender description, offender behavior, involved vehicles, and weapons. Included in the database are solved and unsolved murders, missing persons where foul play is suspected, unidentified bodies, solved and unsolved sexual assaults or attempts, non-parental abductions and attempts, luring incidents, and nuisance sex offenses. .

These cases are forwarded to the FBI Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP) for nationwide analysis. NJ ViCAP now collects information on sexual assaults, nuisance sex offenses, stalking incidents, abductions, and attempted abductions. Law enforcement agencies investigating sexual offenses are strongly recommended to complete a sexual assault crime analysis report and forward it to the New Jersey State Police Violent Crime Analysis Squad. Crime analysis reports will be provided to law enforcement agencies at no cost.

The Violent Crime Analysis Squad provides the law enforcement community with analytical and investigative support services in criminal investigations. The goal of the Violent Crime Analysis Squad, through NJ ViCAP, is to facilitate cooperation, communication, and coordination between law enforcement agencies and provide support in their efforts to investigate, identify, track, apprehend, and prosecute serial offenders. The Violent Crime Analysis Squad provides additional investigative services and support to the law enforcement community which include:

  • Immediate access to information in the ViCAP database
  • Technical assistance in using the database and available resources as investigative tools
  • Time lines on violent offenders and distribute them to law enforcement agencies for comparison to violent crimes that have occurred in their jurisdictions
  • Assistance to law enforcement agencies by preparing analytical reports, violent crime matrixes, and special reports
  • Multi-agency law enforcement conferences regarding serial violent crimes and violent offenders
  • Maintain composite sketch file of offenders and suspects
  • Daily review of NJLETS and NLETS teletypes.
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Criminal Investigation Bureau

The following units make up the bureau:

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Auto Unit

Members are experts in the field of vehicle identification, document fraud and the investigation of organized criminal groups involved in such activity. Assigned members conduct Regulatory Inspections of auto body repair facilities, new and used car dealerships and junkyards throughout the state. Serve as officers and representatives in numerous professional organizations, such as the Vehicle Theft Investigators Association of New Jersey and the International Association of Auto Theft Investigators. Members lecture at various police academies throughout the state to educate local, county, state and federal law enforcement officers in the latest auto theft and document fraud methods and current detection techniques. Provide technical information to auto theft detectives in the field and other agencies requesting assistance with vehicle theft investigations.

Detectives are assigned to squads with the following functions:

  1. Auto Theft and Identification Squads:
    Investigate organized criminal groups responsible for theft of trucks, construction equipment, marine vessels and private automobiles for profit. Experts in the field of vehicle identification and the detection of vehicles with altered identification numbers. Utilize methods such as heat or acid restoration to expose obliterated vehicle identification numbers. Primarily target "chop shop" operations where stolen vehicles are disassembled for parts or altered/disguised for resale. Detectives target organized insurance fraud conspiracies, whereby vehicle owners defraud their insurance carriers by fraudulently reporting their vehicles stolen to collect total loss theft claims. Provide assistance to federal, state and local agencies in all vehicle theft investigations, and liaison with international, national, and state auto theft members involved in complex investigations.
  2. Document Fraud Squads:
    Work closely with New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission investigators to identify and arrest individuals who attempt to conduct illegal activity at Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) agencies. Experts in the field of document identification and the detection of counterfeit documents. Primary goal is to protect the integrity of MVC issued identification documents. Of particular interest are organized driver's license brokerage rings. These rings employ a variety of measures, including bribing MVC employees, to obtain New Jersey driver's licenses for individuals not legally entitled to receive them. Many customers of the brokerage rings obtain licenses in fictitious identities, which can foster other criminal activity, such as terrorism and identity theft. Members are also responsible for large scale odometer fraud investigations, which continue to defraud New Jersey consumers out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
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Fugitive Unit

The Fugitive Unit was established in January 1978. The mandated responsibility of the unit is to conduct and assist in investigations involving prison escapes and other wanted felons.

Throughout its 23 year history, the Fugitive Unit has been the sole agency in New Jersey to coordinate the pursuit of fugitives between the various levels of law enforcement charged with the apprehension of wanted persons. The unit has initiated and coordinated various fugitive roundups where the combined efforts of state, federal, county, and local law enforcement agencies have joined forces to apprehend hundreds of fugitives from justice.

New Jersey's 12 Most Wanted ListThe unit continues to publish the New Jersey's Twelve Most Wanted bulletin, which highlights the State's most violent and dangerous fugitives. 25,000 copies of the bulletin are sent to over 1,200 police agencies throughout the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.

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Major Crime Unit

Investigates all homicides, kidnappings, and other serious crimes which warrant the expertise of its highly trained personnel. Unit members also assist federal, state, county and local authorities in cooperative investigations, resulting in the solution of homicides which might ordinarily go unsolved.

The advent of the 90's has introduced the Major Crime Unit to the most ineffable murderer of all--the serial killer.

Unit members assisted international authorities on a multiple murder and out of state authorities on an interstate multiple murder investigation. In these two investigations 38 people were murdered and all suspects involved have been arrested and charged. A current investigation of a serial murderer has resulted in a continued, cooperative, multi-state effort at solving the murders. The Unit also receives numerous out of state and federal requests for assistance in homicide investigations with New Jersey connections. The Major Crime Unit provides lectures and training in the proper care and evaluation of crime scenes, evidence handling, case management, guidance at autopsies, and assurance that all medico-legal aspects of an investigation are covered.

The Unit is responsible for all investigations of shootings involving serious injury or death to or by a State Police member. The Unit has developed an expertise in deadly force issues through its continual training and investigative experience. The Major Crime Unit conducts an annual Homicide Investigation Seminar at Princeton University. The Homicide Investigation Seminar draws investigators from all 21 counties in New Jersey, as well as investigators from law enforcement agencies throughout the United States and Canada.

The New Jersey State Police Homicide Seminar provides training in the medico-legal aspects of a homicide investigation and teaches the modern scientific techniques available to the homicide investigator. The networking of investigators that has developed as a result of this seminar has had a positive impact on the efficiency of homicide investigations statewide. This seminar has become the premier homicide school in the State of New Jersey.

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Cargo Theft and Robbery Unit

Responsible for the investigation of thefts and robberies from major cargo storage facilities and commercial freight carriers within the State of New Jersey. This includes all commercial and industrial centers, air, sea, and rail terminals, and the motor vehicles utilized for the transportation of such cargo.

The Cargo Theft and Robbery Unit also maintains a statistical record of cargo thefts and robberies which occur in the state, and provides specialized assistance to municipal, county, state and federal authorities to increase arrests, prosecution and conviction of cargo thieves and fences.

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Polygraph Unit

The New Jersey State Police Polygraph Unit was initiated in 1952. It consisted of one detective who was the first examiner in the eastern United States. The value of polygraph was quickly recognized which resulted in the Unit's quick growth to thirteen members. The New Jersey State Police Polygraph Unit was the sole agency in the state that conducted polygraphs for many years.

Today, the Polygraph Unit conducts polygraph examinations for federal, state, county and municipal law enforcement agencies. The goal of the Unit is to provide the highest quality of service to those agencies. Annually the Unit attains a confession rate exceeding 80% from those that are examined and determined as being deceptive. The Unit also maintains an annual inconclusive rate of approximately 4%, which is well below the 20% national average. Unit members further provide the service of statement analysis. Statement analysis aids investigators in determining the veracity of statements given by a victim, suspect or witness. Many times interview strategies of subjects are rendered.

The Polygraph Unit's success rates are directly attributed to the members' expertise in the art of interview and interrogation. The five day Interview and Interrogation Course conducted by Unit members remains one of the most requested specialized schools at the State Police Academy in Sea Girt. The three day course has been sponsored by the Middle Atlantic-Great Lakes Organized Crime Law Enforcement Network (MAGLOCLEN) and county police academies.

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Special Services Bureau

The mission of the units that comprise the Special Services Bureau is, by their very nature, service oriented as opposed to investigative or operational.

The Special Services Bureau is comprised of five (5) units;

These units provide unique investigative, technical and specialized expert assistance to the various units, bureaus and sections within the Division of State Police, as well as other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, upon request. Back | Top  

Ballistics Unit

The Ballistics Unit is responsible for providing technical service to all law enforcement agencies pertaining to firearms used in the commission of a crime, including detailed microscopic examination for discharged shells and bullets in relation to submitted known samples, test firing weapons, conducting distance determinations, restoration of serial numbers, and entering data into National Integrated Ballistic Information Network Computerized Imaging System. Additionally, members of the Ballistics Unit respond to crime scenes to perform bullet trajectories and offer expert crime scene reconstruction, provide expert testimony in court and provide informational support training and lectures to State Police training classes, other law enforcement agencies, schools and civic groups.

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Composite Artist Unit

The Composite Artist Unit assists law enforcement with drawings, sketches and computer images through interviews and other information provided by law enforcement officials, victims and witnesses in order to identify wanted, missing or other unidentified persons. The members also create three dimensional clay reconstructions of facial features from skeletal remains. The Composite Artist Unit provides demonstrations and presentations on the use of drawing and computers in investigations to law enforcement agencies, civic groups and schools.

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Forensic Anthropology Unit

The Forensic Anthropology Unit is responsible for the forensic anthropological examination and analysis of human skeletal remains found in New Jersey to assist in establishing positive identification.

This analysis involves, but is not limited to, the determination and estimation of age, sex, race, stature, and other information which may contribute to cause of death and identification. The Unit also provides assistance in the search for and the controlled excavation and recovery of buried, hidden or scattered remains or other evidence. Additional assistance includes completion of National Crime Information Center reports and initial assessment of presumptive identification on the basis of medical and dental records. The Unit also provides forensic computer imaging such as photographic manipulation as well as facial reconstructions of unidentified deceased and assistance in facial composite drawings of unidentified remains based upon analysis of the skull. The Unit is also responsible for the secure, long-term curation (storage) and retrieval of unidentified human skeletal remains.

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Forensic Photography Unit

The Forensic Photography Unit provides full service in the area of photography, digital imaging and video production, as well as support for the Mobile Video Recording Systems currently in use in all patrol related vehicles within the Division.

The Forensic Photography Unit is responsible for processing various types of photographic film, digital images and video for evidentiary use. The Unit is also capable of providing technical support and assistance in the use of all facets of photographic equipment, film, computer imaging, video (production, surveillance, still imaging and duplication) and training, as well as photographic applications involving evidence photography (clothing, weapons, footprint impressions, altered writing, etc.) in the laboratory using various types of alternate light sources.

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Evidence Management Unit

The Evidence Management Unit is responsible for ensuring that evidence submitted for examination is properly stored and maintained at the regional laboratories. They provide long term storage of evidence and tangible property. The Unit provides for the distribution, disposal and destruction of evidence upon completion of cases.

The Evidence Management Unit is also responsible for the duplication of videotape evidence for courtroom presentation and discovery.

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Applicant Investigation and Compliance Bureau

The units are responsible for conducting regulatory checks and investigations in their respective areas of expertise. The Solid Hazardous Waste Unit, the Firearms Investigation Unit and the Private Detective Unit routinely perform compliance checks to insure adherence to industry and New Jersey State regulations as well as conducting background checks for licensing purposes. The Horse Racing Unit investigates complaints and conducts authorized checks of licensed farms in order to maintain the integrity of the horse racing industry. The Applicant Investigation Unit oversees the process for selection to the State Police Academy once an individual has made application.

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Solid Hazardous Waste Unit (SHWU)

Conducts confidential background investigations on individuals, and business applicants seeking licensing in the solid and hazardous waste industry. The investigations consist of character and financial investigations on individuals and businesses who will engage in the collection, transportation, storage, or disposal of solid/hazardous waste materials. The Unit also performs compliance investigations of already licensed waste industry companies. These compliance investigations include, financial audits, on-site inspections, and review of operational practices. The Unit also collects, analyzes, and evaluates intelligence information regarding individuals and organized criminal activity, which may adversely affect the solid/hazardous waste industry. When warranted, the Unit will conduct criminal investigations into the illicit activities of individuals operating within the industry.

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Firearms Investigation Unit (FIU)

The Firearms Unit in administering the state firearms control laws, is required to promulgate standards and qualifications for the manufacture and sale of firearms, as well as develop forms for distribution to firearms dealers, police departments and superior courts. A central repository of firearms information relating to the acquisition of firearms in this state is maintained by the Unit.

The Unit has absolute responsibility to investigate applicants for a New Jersey license to retail, wholesale and manufacture of firearms, and to investigate employees who will actively engage in the sale or purchase of firearms. Each dealer, by statute, is required to keep a record of the acquisition and disposition of firearms. Unit detectives periodically inspect these records to assure that the dealer is complying with existing statutes, as well as regulations promulgated pursuant to these statutes.

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Private Detective Unit (PDU)

Is responsible for the administration and enforcement of all laws regulating the private detective industry, including pursuers and private detective/security agencies and their employees within the state of New Jersey.

Personnel in this Unit screen all applicants for licenses in accordance with the Private Detective Act of 1939 and the New Jersey Administrative Code. Unit personnel maintain files and computer printouts of all licensed private detective agencies and their employees, conduct inspections and audits of agencies, and investigate complaints and violations of the Private Detective Act, making arrests when necessary.

Private Detective licenses are issued for a two-year period, whereupon they become renewable. There are more than 2,200 licensed private detective agencies in the state of New Jersey.

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Applicant Investigation Unit (AIU)

Is tasked with conducting all pre-employment background investigations on candidates for the New Jersey State Police Academy. In this capacity the Unit assists the Recruiting Unit and participates with the strategic planning for each new State Police selection process initiative. Unit members are an integral component of all phases of the selection process between initial recruiting of qualified candidates to acceptance to the Academy. The Unit assists with the Written Examination, Physical Qualification Test (PQT), Oral Assessment, Medical Examination, and Psychological Evaluation. As a cost saving measure, applicants who pass the PQT are fingerprinted at road stations by Unit members.

The Unit also coordinates with the Office of State Police Affairs and Office of the Attorney General, concerning applicant qualification issues. The Unit is further tasked with providing requisite documents and forms necessary to prosecute the applicant selection process, conducting pre-employment background investigation on New Jersey residents in out of state law enforcement selection processes and processing all applicant inquires by other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. Unit members make up the Qualification Review Board (QRB). Applicants who are deemed "Qualified" after the Background phase, undergo a medical investigation by Unit Members.

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Horse Racing Unit (HRU)

Is responsible for initiating and investigating complaints which violate N.J.S.A. 5:5-71, Title 5 of the Administrative Code, and Title 13 Chapter 70 and 71 Law and Public Safety Codes relative to Horse Racing.

Unit members investigate findings of foreign substances in participating horses, allegations of race manipulation by licensed participants as a result of illicit activities, pari-mutual ticket frauds, as well as all cases of hidden ownership. The unit conducts compliance investigations at licensed horse farms located throughout the state of New Jersey.

The Unit also investigates criminal activity that occurs on the grounds of the licensed pari-mutual wagering facilities in the state. Any violations of the Racing Commission Rules and Regulations that adversely affect the integrity of the racing industry within the state of New Jersey will be investigated. The Unit acts as a liaison between the New Jersey Racing Commission investigators, the Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau (TRPB) investigators and the United States Trotting Association (USTA) investigators in order to maintain integrity throughout the racing industry.

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