When the bad guy is caught because the bad guy made a mistake, that does not mean bad luck for the bad guy or good luck for the good guy. It just means that the investigator not only caught the mistake, but ran with it. This takes effort and skill, not luck. If you want to see luck (good or bad), watch a Roulette table or throw some dice in Vegas. Granted, I have seen bad guy mistakes that truly dropped into the lap of an investigator, but that is typically not typical, and even then, if you don't recognize it for what it is, you'll miss out on a freebie.
A good case study you can see on Youtube is Ochko123 - How the Feds Caught Russian Mega-Carder Roman Seleznev
One of the really good statements from the presentation is “…mistakes just happen…and if law enforcement sees that one mistake it’s something to run on…”.
The trick in seeing that one mistake resides in only three questions to ask yourself (today, ask yourself these questions today):
1. What kind of mistakes happen?
2. Where do I look for those mistakes?
3. What do I do when I find one?
Use three simple questions to solve the most complex of cases, whether it is a hacking case or a murder case or a fraud case or an employee theft case. Any case. I harp on this concept often, only because it is so important. I harp on it enough to write books about it, teach it, and do it myself. The concept is the same. Know the mistakes that the bad guys make, find the mistakes, and know what to do with the mistakes when you find them.
The old adage of the bad guy has to be right 100% of the time and the police only need to be right once is true in that you only need to find the one mistake to break the case. Looking back on my biggest cases that were overwhelmingly complex on the surface, I can reflect on the first little cracks in the cases that were all tied back to an error by the suspect. Every single one of them. It took effort to find the mistakes, but they were there.
Solving cases has always been this way. There is no magic in solving a complex case other than the illusion of magic that you create for everyone who watches you run circles around them as you close cases. When you meet someone who always has a difficult time of closing a case, it is because they are not finding the errors that are being made by the suspect. That’s it. For whatever reason, the mistakes are not being caught or if they are, the mistakes are not being exploited by the investigator to break the case open. Anyone who says that mistakes don't happen anymore are mistaken. Mistakes happen, have always happened, and will continue to happen. Human nature and technology failures will continue to allow investigators to solve the unsolvable cases.
You still have to work hard even after being skilled at finding mistakes made by the suspect. There is no way around that. When I was a young patrol officer, I made a lot of arrests. I'm talking a lot of felony arrests. My department had a tad bit over 125 commissioned officers, but in one year alone, I made more felony drug arrests than the rest of the department...combined. I was called "lucky". I was asked constantly, "How are you so lucky?". My answer was always something to the effect of "I'm just lucky I guess." In reality, I worked hard. I talked to a lot of people on the street (citizens and not-so-much-citizens). I watched drug houses every minute I could. I simply worked hard and it appeared that I was "lucky". Luck has nothing to do it. You need the effort and you need to know what you are looking for. I brought that same luck with me when I made detective. I bring it whereever I go. You can see this concept in business where a business makes a mistake and a competitor exploits the heck out of it. You can do it too with your cases, regardless of the type of case, size of case, or importance of the case.
If you are looking for a headstart on answering the three questions, I’ll give you 50% off the Placing the Suspect Behind the Keyboard online course, plus two free books (PSBK and HBTK) to go along with the course. $399.50 for 13 hours of (1) what mistakes are made, (2) where to look for the mistakes, and (3) what to do when you find one. But hurry, you only have a few days before the promo expires on 8/31/17.