A LOW-COST PANORAMIC CAMERA FOR THE 3D DOCUMENTATION OF CONTAMINATED CRIME SCENES
Crime scene documentation is a fundamental task which has to be undertaken in a fast, accurate and reliable way, highlighting evidence which can be further used for ensuring justice for victims and for guaranteeing the successful prosecution of perpetrators. The main focus of this paper is on the documentation of a typical crime scene and on the rapid recording of any possible contamination that could have influenced its original appearance. A 3D reconstruction of the environment is first generated by processing panoramas acquired with the low-cost Ricoh Theta 360 camera, and further analysed to highlight potentials and limits of this emerging and consumer-grade technology. Then, a methodology is proposed for the rapid recording of changes occurring between the original and the contaminated crime scene. The approach is based on an automatic 3D feature-based data registration, followed by a cloud-to-cloud distance computation, given as input the 3D point clouds generated before and after e.g. the misplacement of evidence. All the algorithms adopted for panoramas pre-processing, photogrammetric 3D reconstruction, 3D geometry registration and analysis, are presented and currently available in open-source or low-cost software solutions.