The Identification Division is an essential service and support unit of the Houston Police Department. The division provides essential collection and analysis of forensic evidence retrieved from crime scenes. The division also provides support to investigative divisions requiring assistance with polygraph, audio/video evidence as well as digital computer evidence.
The Identification Division is part of the Forensic Services Command. The technically diverse units that comprise the Identification Division include: AFIS, Audio/Video Laboratory, Crime Scene Unit, Digital Computer Forensics Unit, Latent Print Laboratory, and the Polygraph Unit.
Using the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), the division is able to identify repeat offenders and ensure that current criminal history data is denoted on the proper record. This system also enables the division to enter latent fingerprints found at crime scenes and identifies suspects solely on fingerprint identification.
The Audio/Video Unit uses the latest technology for use in voice identification, tape filtering, and image enhancement. As an example, image enhancement enables the department to enhance surveillance videotape of a robbery to make a suspect identification that may otherwise be impossible due to a poor video image.
The Crime Scene Unit (CSU) has the primary responsibility of processing major crime scenes for evidence. This includes the identification, collection, and preservation of crime scene evidence.
The Digital Computer Forensics Unit is part of a task force partnered with the United States Secret Service. Their primary objective is to conduct forensic examinations of computers, cellular telephones, and other media devices.
The Latent Print Lab analyzes and processes physical evidence for the presence of latent finger/palm prints. Developed and lifted prints are evaluated for value and further comparison and, if needed, entry in local, state and federal Automated Fingerprint Identification Systems (AFIS).
The Identification Division can be reached at 713-308-3000.
For clearance/immigration letters and public fingerprinting, please contact the Houston Permitting Center at 832-394-4880. The Houston Permitting Center is located at 1002 Washington Avenue.