Surveillance is a must with any and all private investigation. As private investigators this is generally our “meat and potatoes” of the business.  Surveillance is where we are able to gather video proof of any activities in which our subject may be engaged.  There are wide ranges of techniques, tactics, and theories involving surveillance.  None are REALLY wrong, well, as long as we stay within the confines of the law.

I’m going discuss a certain technique that we like to employ. Most investigators typically have a single man, or one-man surveillance, where, like the name implies one individual is observing the subject.  This works, and is sometimes necessary.  However, we’ve come to see a great deal of effectiveness with using a three-man team.

Now, think about this, if we immediately implement a three man team, we have a much less chance of getting burned, losing the subject, AND, this is a big one, we may be able to accomplish in one night of surveillance what it may take multiple nights to get with a single-man. Once an investigator is burned, the subject is going to definitely be on the lookout.  You are also able to get many different angles utilizing more investigators.  Therefore, if one investigator is in a position where facial recognition isn’t quite there, another may be in a spot where its easily recognizable.

Most people will argue, “Well that costs more money.” And sure, it does…. but maybe not in the long run.  I ask you to think about this:  With a single-man concept, each person will cost extra (for example, just throwing a number out there, say each person is $65 per hour).  When we implement the three-man team immediately, we have a single cost (sure a bit higher than the $65…. but keep reading).  Now think about what I said before, more can be accomplished in less time when you immediately use three-man.  Like I said, you may have the case open and shut in one night versus going out four or five times.   So, over time, a client would actually be saving time, money, and stress.

Now, I’m not knocking one-man surveillance, it’s very effective, especially with the right investigator. However, the chance of discovery, time spent (which equals money spent), and quality of evidence gathered could outweigh the initial costs when using a three-man system.

Thanks for reading!
Corey McMahan