The Detective Bureau falls under the Services Division of the Kentwood Police Department and is overseen by Captain Stephanie Morningstar. The Detective Bureau is separated into two units, General Case and Special Investigations. The General Case Unit is staffed with one sergeant, one clerk, and eight detectives. Six of the detectives in the unit are assigned to general and major case investigations. One detective is assigned to a multi-agency Combined Auto Theft Team (CATT). Another detective is assigned to the Metropolitan Fraud and Identity Theft Team (MFITT). Most original investigations are initiated and completed by the Patrol Division. When a crime has been committed, a report may be forwarded to the Detective Bureau for further investigation. Cases assigned to the General Case Unit generally conduct “reactive” investigations; meaning they receive a preliminary report from a patrol officer and, after determining the existence of certain factors within the report, conduct a follow-up investigation or submit it to the Prosecutor’s office to seek criminal charges. General case detectives are responsible for conducting continued investigations.
One area where detectives are responsible for initiating an original report and specialized investigation is in the area of child abuse. Four of the detectives have specialized training in the investigation of child abuse, both physical and sexual. One general case detective is the primary investigator in this specialized field. Most of these cases are referred to us by Children’s Protective Services (CPS). Detectives work these cases in cooperation with CPS and specially-trained personnel at the Children’s Assessment Center. Investigating certain crimes may take months and, sometimes, years to fully investigate and successfully clear a case. Individuals assigned to the Detective Bureau are carefully selected sworn officers based on demonstrated dedication and excellence in conducting criminal investigations.