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Seeking the truth

Staff Sgt. Andres Posada, 2nd Security Forces Squadron investigator, inventories evidence confiscated from a crime scene on Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Nov. 20. The investigations flight is responsible for the accountability of all evidence collected in Barksdale's jurisdiction. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Chad Warren)(RELEASED)

Staff Sgt. Andres Posada, 2nd Security Forces Squadron investigator, inventories evidence confiscated from a crime scene on Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Nov. 20. The investigations flight is responsible for the accountability of all evidence collected in Barksdale's jurisdiction. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Chad Warren)(RELEASED)

BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. -- After the handcuffs are on and the arrests are made, a small group of law enforcement Airmen continue the search for the truth to ensure criminals are brought to justice.

For the 2nd Security Forces Squadron investigations flight, apprehension is only the beginning.

The flight is responsible for gathering and housing evidence in cases involving all military employees or dependents on and around Barksdale. They are also responsible for cases involving civilians that occur on Barksdale.

"We have a wide reach when we conduct investigations," said John Reser, 2 SFS investigations flight chief. "Our jurisdiction is over anyone who is military, on or off-base."

Although they do not wear a uniform every day, investigators are a vital part of the Barksdale mission. They have the sole responsibility of keeping accountability of all controlled evidence, such as drugs or firearms, seized in cases under their jurisdiction.

Their responsibility doesn't stop there. The investigators are trained in several different areas of law enforcement expertise, ranging from counter-terrorism to hostage negotiation.
"We are the hostage negotiation response team for the base," said Staff Sgt. Andres Posada, 2 SFS investigator.

If a hostage situation arises, the flight has personnel trained by the Federal Bureau of Investigations to handle the situation accordingly.

This unique mission and set of responsibilities is not taken lightly by this elite team. The selection and training requirements are rigorous.

"The guys are all recruited from the Security Forces Squadron," said Reser. "After they apply, we construct a board of our current investigators to evaluate them. We select the best candidates for the job."

After selected, candidates attend an eight week training course at Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo., which consists of training that spans the entire range of situations the investigators may encounter.
According to Posada, this is one of the most comprehensive and best investigations courses in the country.

Following the course, investigators are placed on a one year probationary period in which they learn the job and hone their techniques.

For the 2 SFS investigations flight, the job is not complete until the criminal is behind bars.