“That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

Private investigators are experts in gathering hardcore evidence. But what exactly is hardcore evidence and what can it include? Hardcore evidence is evidence that is direct and conclusive, leaving no room for dispute. In contrast, circumstantial evidence is a set of related evidence or circumstances that together lead to a probable conclusion. Hardcore evidence is direct proof that stands on its own without additional factors needed for a conclusion.

Gathering Hardcore Evidence
PIs gather hardcore evidence in a variety of ways, depending on the case. Some cases require hardcore evidence that involves digging into the background of a person (or several people). Other cases may require video surveillance, vehicle tracking, DNA testing, polygraphs and monitoring online activity on computers or mobile devices.

Data – Some forms of hardcore evidence gathered by PIs are information or data-related. This may include financial or criminal background checks, but also motor vehicle records and hospital patient records. An investigator may also gather evidence by recovering data that has been deleted from computers, hard drives, tablets and smartphones. The recovery of this deleted data may turn up emails, browser history or web search information that becomes a key piece of direct evidence in a case. From smartphones, investigators can recover deleted text messages, voicemails, photos and other documentation.

Surveillance – A specialty of private investigators is surveillance. Hardcore surveillance evidence could be gathered through video surveillance, audio surveillance, photo surveillance and vehicle tracking. Surveillance can be anything that observes and documents the activities and whereabouts of a person. It’s important to note that PIs are specially trained in surveillance techniques and applicable laws, and in many states must have a license or permit to use surveillance to gather evidence. Surveillance is NOT something a person should try to do themselves. In fact, doing so may violate local and federal laws, so leave this kind of evidence gathering to the professionals!

Interview – PIs can use interviews to gather hardcore evidence as well. Witness interviews, victim interviews and polygraphs are all ways investigators use interview techniques to gather evidence. Interview evidence can be viewed as less credible in some types of cases, so most PIs will work to gather additional forms of evidence to support statements made during an interview to strengthen that evidence.

Testing – PIs use testing in a few different ways to obtain hardcore evidence. DNA testing is one kind of testing investigators may use to test clothing, fibers, trace evidence and, of course, people. PIs can also test physical evidence to match fibers, determine unknown substances and other more forensic-style testing, in certain types of cases.

PIs are experts in finding and gathering evidence, in particular, hardcore evidence that is indisputable, direct and conclusive. In many cases, PIs have access and clearance to gather evidence in ways the regular citizen does not. If you need hardcore evidence for a case, first check with a properly licensed private investigator like Bulldog PI.