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The Investigation -Continued
4.  Administrative  support  (fig.  13-4) Figure 13-4 directs the SJA office of the command to provide clerical support to the IO. It is extremely important to designate who provides that support in order  for  the  IO  to  obtain  assistance  in  typing  the investigation  and  producing  the  necessary  number  of copies. THE INVESTIGATION Upon first appointment as an IO, the universal question is, “Where do I begin?” The first step is to examine the appointing order to determine the specific purpose and scope of the inquiry, remembering that the general goal is to find out who, what, when, where, how, and why an incident occurred. Next, the IO should decide  exactly  which  procedures  to  follow  and  become fully acquainted with part A of chapter II and the specific sections  of  the  JAGMAN  listed  in  the  appointing  order. Most importantly the IO should begin work on the investigation   immediately   upon   notification   of appointment, whether or not a formal appointing order has been received. The investigation should start as soon as possible after the incident has occurred, since: reports; (3) eyewitness accounts; (4) vehicle damage estimates;  (5)  mechanical  evaluation;  (6)  inspection  of the  scene;  and  (7)  other  matters  required  by  JAGMAN, sections 0215-0224, 0227, 0229, and 0231. On the other hand, an investigation of a shipboard casualty or the loss of a piece of equipment could involve merely the calling and  examination  of  material  witnesses. The IO may use any method of investigation he or she  finds  most  efficient  and  effective. Relevant information  may  be  obtained  from  witnesses  by personal interview, correspondence, telephone inquiry, or other means. One of the principal advantages of an investigation  not  requiring  a  hearing  is  that  the interviewing of witnesses maybe done at different times and places, rather than at a formal hearing. The IO is not bound by formal rules of evidence and may collect, consider, and include in the record any matter relevant to the inquiry that a person of average caution  would  consider  to  be  believable  or  authentic. The IO must authenticate real and documentary items and  enclose  legible  reproductions  in  the  investigative report, with certification of correctness of copies or statements of authenticity. The IO may not speculate on the causes of an incident; however, inferences may be drawn from the evidence gathered to determine the witnesses may be required to leave the scene; likely course of conductor chain of events that occurred. a ship’s operating schedule may require leaving In most cases, it is inappropriate for the IO to speculate the area of the incident; on the thought process of an individual that resulted in a certain course of conduct. events will be fresh in the minds of witnesses; As stated previously, the IO is not bound by the and formal rules of evidence; however, there are certain damaged  equipment/material  are  more  apt  to  be things that cannot be combined with an investigative in the same relative position/condition as a result of  the  incident. The  circumstances  surrounding  the  particular incident  under  investigation  will  dictate  the  most effective method of conducting the investigation. For example, an investigation of an automobile accident, in which one or more of the parties were injured, would involve (1) interviews at the hospital with the injured parties; (2) collection of hospital records and police report. NCIS  investigations. An  NCIS  investigation consists of a narrative summary portion (called the Report  of  Investigation,  where  the  participating  agents detail  the  steps  taken  in  the  investigation)  and enclosures. The IO is forbidden from including the narrative summary portion of the NCIS investigation in the  JAGMAN  investigation;  however,  the  enclosures, which  frequently  comprise  the  bulk  of  an  NCIS 4. By copy of this appointing order the Staff Judge Advocate’s Office, Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida, is directed to furnish any necessary clerical assistance for recording the proceedings and preparing the record. Social security numbers of military personnel should be obtained through PSD or other official channels. Figure 13-4.-Administrative support statement. 13-6

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