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The detectives of the Major Case Squad typically investigate crimes beyond the scope of normal squads. These functions vary from department to department, including:* Art theft* Burglary or attempted burglary of a bank or bank safe* Burglary of a truck contents over $100,000* All commercial burglaries in which the value of the property stolen exceeds $100,000* Kidnappings, as directed by the Chief of Detectives* Larceny by extortion, or attempted larceny by extortion, from a bank* Larceny of truck contents over $100,000.* Robbery, or attempted robbery, of a bank by an armed perpetrator* All robberies in warehouse depots, or similar locations, where the objects of the crime is a truck or its contents* Robbery of truck and contents by hijacking.The Major Case Squad does not normally investigate homicides: Those are generally conducted by precinct detective squads and borough homicide squads; the exceptions involve homicides committed by violent criminal organizations that fall under larger federal RICO investigations and prosecutions, as well as the murder of police officers. On the matter of the homicides of police officers, the Major Case Squad was originally formed in response to the wave of assassinations of police officers in the late 1960's and early 1970's by radical groups like the Black Panthers. Ultimate responsibility for any homicide case in NYC rests with the precinct detective squad concerned, but the Major Case Squad has historically played a large and important role in the investigation of any homicide of an NYC police officer.
American law allows for the 'false deception ploy' where the police can claim to have evidence (fingerprints, DNA, CCTV, witnesses) they do not in order to gain a confession, the idea being that any innocent person would know such evidence could not exist and see through it. This has become increasingly controversial however due to cases such as the Central Park 5 rape case where the suspects were told their co-defendants were saying they were responsible so they accused them in turn only to be exonerated years later.
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