From the Investigator: Sherlock’s Most Unique Cases – Bodashia

Sherlock Investigation’s Most Unique Cases

As a fairly new employee with Sherlock Investigations, but also a seasoned investigator, Bodashia Grimm has come into the private sector with a vengeance.  Bodashia possesses a long list of qualifications including a B.S. in Criminal Justice and a Master’s in Business Administration. She has a love for finding outdoor adventure with her family and her dogs.  Bodashia  also volunteers with the American Red Cross conducting disaster assessments and shelter work, across the country; an effort that is 100% supported by our company. This series aims to address the unique circumstances that Private Investigators run into, as well as the impressionable outcomes that many of our cases hold. Let’s get to know our third interviewee, Bodashia, a little better!

How did you get into surveillance?

Approximately thirteen years ago, I started as an officer for the State of Michigan. A few years later, there were job postings for an Investigative Unit that would be looking for a small number of candidates to work in the Metro Detroit area. The moment I heard of the opportunity, my heart began to race as I thought back on all the cop shows I watched as a little girl. I would always announce that I wanted to be on the FBI Taskforce when I grew up. I imagined conducting surveillance and making huge cases on the news. I always paid attention to detail, loved gun sports, hunting, competing and working primarily with men. So, I applied – along with hundreds of other officers across the state that were excited to take a shot at the opportunity. The day finally came when a call from HR appeared on my caller ID – right before roll call one day. My heart started racing again and I answered “Hello”. The woman on the other end of the line offered me a position and without hesitation, I accepted! With the experience of three years as an officer, a member of the Emergency Response Team, a Gun Range Officer, and a trainer in courses for state officers – I felt I was finally headed in the direction to utilize my unique skill set. Almost eleven years later, I continue to learn new things everyday doing surveillance, especially since crossing over to the private side.

What is your opinion of the career now versus what you used to think the job entailed? How does your view differ from the public view of the job?

Television shows can leave impressions of investigators in fast pursuits of subjects, leading to a destination in the middle of nowhere, and dressing in trench coats with big hats. The trench style coat was very intriguing to me; however, surveillance investigators look to “fit in”, not stand out. I’m always questioned on how I do my job and what clothing I wear. I used to think that was an odd question for people to ask me – until people asked me all the time. Conducting surveillance in the field, searching with computer software, and interviewing people is my niche. It can be fun to “stake out” and watch people, businesses, or public areas – but it takes mandatory commitment to the job. I have always looked at my career as a hobby, because it’s what I love to do.   

Are there any cases you worked on, that come to mind as very “unique “? Why is that?

All cases are unique in their own way. Watching the surroundings in an environment is important. I have as much fun watching everything around me as much as an actual subject. One time, while retrieving footage of a subject in a parking lot and initiating mobile surveillance, I noticed two other vehicles aggressively following the subject’s vehicle. I had noticed the same vehicles doing circles in the parking lot about an hour before the subject came out. I kept my distance, with a visual on the subject and called our office regarding my observations. After the investigative staff reached out to the client for clarification on the mission, we determined the other vehicles were investigators watching the other person in the vehicle with my subject. It was an interesting ride to a deposition, which I casually took through three different cities and hoped the obvious investigators were not going to blow my case for me. In the end, I obtained the footage I needed without compromising myself to the subject and the other investigators on that day.

What is one of your most successful “wins” as an investigator? A case where you made a positive difference in outcome.

There was a time I had to locate a subject that was a sex offender, whom did not report his real address as required with the Michigan State Police (MSP). After weeks of interviewing people and conducting neighborhood canvasses, I had finally found a source that was willing to cooperate with me to find the subject. I notified the MSP Sex Offender Unit of my findings and collaborated to find the subject. My source revealed a particular time and place the subject would be. I made the call to MSP and I video recorded MSP taking the subject into custody. An MSP Trooper later notified me of descriptive evidence on the subject’s phone and in the backpack the subject had in their possession. There were twenty-five counts of violations that the subject pled guilty to in court – they were then sent back to prison.  

What is your advice for other or aspiring investigators?

A career as an investigator can lead to rewarding factors in many cases. It can be a different day every day, you will meet new people, it can be dangerous, you will have to make sacrifices, and you will have to utilize discretion. People may visualize all of the cool surveillance techniques to utilize if they were investigators, but foremost is having patience. The ability to make the right decisions is imperative to a case. Working with a good investigative support team, like I do, can make the job a lot easier to focus on the surveillance itself and it eliminates having to worry about a pre-surveillance workup. The job is not for everyone, most people find out early in the field if it’s not a good fit for them.

What is your advice for our clients or potential clients on expectations for each case?

All investigating agencies are not created equal. Making a choice on which agency to choose from may be difficult for some clients, or as easy as taking the lowest bidder for others. The quote, “You pay for what you get” should be taken into consideration. I would advise clients to do their research, take recommendations, and work with an agency that offers consistent results in what they need – an agency that has the resources to do the job right. Working at Sherlock Investigations as a surveillance investigator, I have every tool I need to be in the right place, at the right time. Our team of experts are able to produce a plan of action that is customizable to the client’s needs, creating the ability to produce reliable results, which makes cases cost-effective in the long-run.