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RCMP school teaches 'scientific crime detection' in 1946

He's a strong, brave, honest, horseback-riding Canadian in a red tunic who always gets his man. At least, that's the clichéd image of a Mountie. But with a history stretching back to 1873, the real Royal Canadian Mounted Police have always been more complex than their squeaky-clean, steely stereotype.

Mounties are traditionally known for their tales of rugged adventure during Canada's early days. But according to this 1946 CBC Radio clip, "the Mounties are still pioneering - this time, in the field of scientific crime detection." By the 1940s, it's all about modern science, and that's why the RCMP school in Regina is teaching its officers all about the latest crime-solving techniques. In this clip, we hear about the school and its recent graduation ceremony.
• The RCMP began its push toward "modern" crime fighting techniques during the 1930s. As a result, a new kind of training was needed for recruits. The first phase of the new training program included first aid, judo, firearms instruction and physical training. The second phase included lectures on the Criminal Code, criminal investigation, administrative procedures, public relations, ballistics and other scientific aids, typing, fingerprinting and the operation of motor vehicles.
  • The RCMP opened its first "crime detection laboratory" in Regina in 1937. The lab's facilities included areas specializing in documents, toxicology, tool marks, firearms and spectrograph analysis.

• Other advancements in crime detection in the 1930s included the modus operandi (M.O.) file, based on the idea that criminals will repeat the same criminal methods in different situations. This file became a national, organized record of habitual criminals and their methods of operation. The RCMP also instituted a police service dog section during the 1930s, in which they trained and used dogs to help solve cases of theft, arson, missing persons and detecting illegal substances.

Medium: Radio
Program: Overseas Extra
Broadcast Date: July 7, 1946
Reporter: Stan Ross
Duration: 2:03

Last updated: February 10, 2012

Page consulted on December 6, 2013

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