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May 14, 2018: Detective Dave Sweet, Calgary City Police Homicide Division.     website

Ben Kormos introduced Detective Dave Sweet, a homicide detective with the Calgary Police Department.

Detective Sweet’s career in law enforcement began in November, 1998, and since that time he has worked in general patrol, the drug unit and organized crime section, before landing in the homicide unit in June, 2009. In addition to a Distinguished Service Award in 2010, Detective Sweet received the Chief’s Award for Investigative Excellence in 2017.

Currently, Detective Sweet is in the final processes of publishing his first book, "An Unconventional Classroom — Life Lessons from a Veteran Homicide Detective", and in the fall of this year he will appear in an episode for the CBC’s series, "The Detectives".

Detective Sweet gave an example of a news release on the radio and how our mind automatically goes to our own experiences. He then proceeded to show us our mind's eye - sight, sound and smell by showing us pictures of homicide scenes. Emotion is what you feel at the time of a murder.

The CPS homicide unit is mandated to investigate the following:

  • All homicides.
  • All suspicious deaths – bodies found in a river, alley, suicides, or those requested by the medical examiner.
  • All deaths involving handguns.
  • All police-related firearm discharges other than on range.

Currently the CPS homicide unit employs:

  • 2 staff sergeants;
  • 15 full-time detectives;
  • 3 cold case investigators;
  • 2 contract civilian positions;
  • 2 analysts;
  • 2 scanning clerks;
  • 3 missing persons investigators.

Looks like a lot of employees, but not when you consider the Calgary Flames employ more!

Some Trivia:

  • Calgary’s first homicide was reported on February 8, 1884, and the culprit responsible was hung the following month.
  • The highest number of homicides reported in one year was 37 in 2015. The annual average number of homicides in Calgary is 30, and the solve rate is 81%.
  • The highest number of homicides occur in January/July.
  • The lowest number of homicides occur in February.
  • The highest number of homicides occur on Sunday.
  • The lowest number of homicides occur on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
  • The highest number of homicides occur between 12 midnight and 3:59 am.
  • The lowest number of homicides occur between 6:00 and 9:00 am
  • The preferred methods used by homicide offenders in Calgary are:
    • gun
    • knife
    • beating
    • choking
    • mixed bag (I wonder what that is?!)

Detective Sweet concluded by showing us a model of how they proceed to solve a homicide. Interpreting the event comprises analysis under three elements: the body, history and scene. Investigating a death scene is like putting a jigsaw puzzle together: all the pieces must fit together naturally.

Marvin Pawlivsky expressed the thanks of the club, and presented our world famous Boltman as an expression of our appreciation.

  • Marvin Pawlivsky, Dave Sweet, and Ben Kormos Marvin Pawlivsky, Dave Sweet, and Ben Kormos

reported by Mike Carlin

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