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Unusual profession - Underwater Criminal Investigator - video

Mike Berry is one of the leading instructors and authorities in the sector known as Public Safety Diving. He specialises in teaching others how to survive and function in this difficult and demanding profession. As a Public Safety Diver, you will have the opportunity to liaise with local authorities, be part of dive rescue teams,
Published: November 14, 2016 - 17:42
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 14:15
Unusual profession – Underwater Criminal Investigator – video

Mike Berry is one of the leading instructors and authorities in the sector known as Public Safety Diving. He specialises in teaching others how to survive and function in this difficult and demanding profession.

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As a Public Safety Diver, you will have the opportunity to liaise with local authorities, be part of dive rescue teams, carry out search and recovery and often work with criminal investigations.

crimediver2

Road to working as a Public Safety Diver and Underwater Criminal Investigator

“I became a certified diver right out of the Army. A year later I joined the Virginia State Police and it just so happened that my induction officer was a man who also worked as a State Police Diver. It was he who told me about their diving section.

During my training he was called on a case where he was to find underwater and retrieve stolen guns, he then asked me if I wanted to join him. I couldn’t believe it! Suddenly I was in a place with zero visibility, searching the muddy bottom in the dark, when my hand came across something hard! After a while I could make out the shape of this object and it turned out to be a stolen weapon. Some kind of change came over me that day. I understood what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.” – Mike Berry recalls his story.

Most unique experience as an Underwater Criminal Investigator

“During murder cases, when you find a weapon…it all depends on your skills. Both your diving skills and your ability to search the bottom centimetre by centimetre. There have been cases where murderers have laughed in my face and said that I would never find the weapon… The look on their face when they were proved wrong? Priceless.

In its own way, searching for and finding dead bodies is also an interesting experience. You get called in on a case and with your diving skills, you can end a very difficult situation. Both for the investigators, but above all for the family. They can’t begin to heal their wounds as long as the loved one remains undiscovered. I consider it a personal honour to help in such cases.” – Berry explains.

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Opportunities to develop as a PADI Public Safety Diver

“More and more law enforcement agencies are seeing the need for highly trained Underwater Criminal Investigators (UCI) divers to provide vital support when their investigations hit an obstacle in the water.

UCI divers are trained to search and recover all kinds of objects from bullets to knives, guns, long guns, corpses or vehicles. Once a search target is tracked down, it is marked and documented with photo and video technology, then packed into appropriate containers and taken to the surface.” – concluded Mike Berry.

You can read more about the PADI Public Safety Diver training programme here.

Source: padi.com

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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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