US Army, German police pull ‘body’ from Soldiers Lake during exercise

A member of the Technische Einsatzeinheit, or Technical Support Unit, of the Nürnberg Police prepares to search Soldiers Lake for a “weapon” during a crime scene exercise.

Story and photos by Bryan Gatchell, USAG Ansbach Public Affairs

ANSBACH, Germany (April 11, 2017) – U.S. Army investigative and emergency personnel and local German police personnel worked together on a combined functional exercise at Soldiers Lake here Monday.

As part of an exercise, a vehicle with a dummy body was found in Soldiers Lake near the entrance to Urlas Community and Shipton Kaserne. The U.S. Army Garrison Fire and Emergency Services and the Technische Einsatzeinheit, or “Technical Support Unit,” removed the vehicle from the lake. The Criminal Investigative Division agents collected information at the scene. And the Technische Einsatzeinheit searched the bottom of the lake for the “weapon.”

Members of the Ansbach office of the Criminal Investigative Division lower a dummy body down for further crime scene investigation.

“We’ve worked in the past with the fire department at the annual training exercises,” said Steven Troupe, chief of the Ansbach CID office. “It was good today to train with the German criminal police technical team because we don’t get to see them come out here and support our investigations and the capabilities that they have. Today we got to see how they employ at least their water-borne operations and vehicle recovery.”

Following the removal of the vehicle from the lake, the CID processed the scene, collecting photographs and evidence from the vehicle and the dummy. The dive team from the Nürnberg police, who had helped hook the car to the fire department’s equipment, cordoned off a section of the lake and used specialized detection equipment to find possible weapons.

Michael Kern, unit leader of the Technische Einsatzeinheit, said the purpose of the event was “to learn what the DES can do or for the CID to learn what we can do for them.”

“We are a support unit,” said Kern. “When something happens and the DES or the [military police] have a problem with technical equipment or that the fire department can’t reach, they know the Polizei have something. They can call and ask.”

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