Mike joined the Miami-Dade County Police Department in 1983 and started with the Crime Scene Investigations Bureau in 1987. He took an exceptionally active part in the science of forensic crime scene investigations, including development of new techniques, publishing methodology of crime scene procedures, and teaching. Mike was responsible for solving major criminal investigations in Miami-Dade County during his career. Mike developed new techniques for gathering and cataloguing crime scene evidence including the lifting of fingerprints, vehicle tire impressions, and footwear impressions. He would gather hundreds of types of floor tiles and experiment with different shoe sole patterns, soil compositions, and fluid markers to determine the methods and chemicals necessary to identify this type of evidence at crime scenes. Mike developed a method to collect and preserve an otherwise invisible shoe print that deposited blood evidence on commonly found ceramic tiles used in South Florida. He did the same for tire tread impressions.
Mike’s methods and analysis withstood the scrutiny of the criminal justice process. He published more than thirty crime scene articles on crime scene evidence collection and for the International Association for Identification and was awarded the Good of the Association Award in 2002 for his innovative identification methodology and techniques.
Mike published a professional handbook in 2001 entitled Crime Scene Evidence: A Guide to the Recovery and Collection of Physical Evidence. The hands-on manual is used as a guide nationally by Crime Scene Investigation sections. Mike published many professional articles, including: Innovative Evidence Identification Markers at a Crime Scene; Duty Description for the Crime Scene Investigator; Written Documentation at a Crime Scene; Crime Scene Photography – Guidelines; Simple Crime Scene Sketching; Ridge Detail at a Crime Scene; Developing and Lifting Latent Footwear Impressions; Simple Tire Tread Standards Collection; and Other Impression Evidence. He taught crime scene investigation procedures and techniques at police departments around the country and took great pride at instructing smaller Florida police departments in the latest techniques in evidence gathering. He designed and created many of the current Crime Scene Investigations courses that are now being taught at the Training Bureau and within the Crime Scene Investigations section.
Mike performed the tough detailed oriented forensic work at many major crime scenes and disasters over the last two-decades. He gathered, processed, and identified the DNA evidence used to convict the Tamiami Strangler for a string of heinous murders in 1994. His thoughtful gathering of evidence at the Valujet crash allowed families to reach closure for the deaths of loved ones. This crash led Mike to write an article on the organization and leadership for disaster response – Disaster Management -Lost Innocents.
Michael Wayne Byrd was born in Knoxville, Tennessee: on December 21, 1955. Mike married Margaret Therese Porter on May 23, 1974. He is survived by his wife, Maggie, daughters Michele Lynn Byrd-Chatila and Katherine Marie Byrd-Harpley, son in laws Jimmy Harpley and Rami Chatila, four grandchildren Ashley Michele (11), Muhammad Rami (2), Mahasen (1), Savanna Rose (3), father James Edward Byrd, mother Betty Lou Satterfield-Byrd, sisters, Judy Diane and Debra Jean, brother James Samuel and many nieces and nephews. A funeral mass was held on Friday, March 4 at 12:00 p.m. at St. Louis Catholic Church, 7270 SW 120 Street, followed by a police honor guard and bagpipes burial ceremony at Woodlawn Cemetery 11655 S.W. 117 Avenue Miami, Florida. It was requested that, in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to: Police Officers Assistance Trust (POAT) 2634 N.W. 97Avenue Miami, Florida 3317.