Cheating Spouse Investigation By A NJ PI

Bob Cowan - Owner of Cowan Investigations, a New Jersey Private Investigator

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I Have Decided I Had Enough Of Being A Victim Of  ACheating Spouse, You Have Taken The Step Of Consulting With And Hiring A New Jersey Private Investigator, What Steps Are Actually Taken Before The Infidelity Investigation Begins?

So, you have been through the lying and deception of your cheating spouse, which takes place in order that your cheating partner can cover their tracks and as it is said, have their cake and eat it too. This deception by a cheating spouse has left you feeling like a fool, isolated, often embarrassed to even seek advice from your family and closest friends on what to do about the infidelity. Your gut is telling you something in your relationship is just not right, you strongly suspect your spouse is cheating, you see many of the signs of cheating that would point to Infidelity by your partner (re; link).

You try to talk to your partner, present to your spouse what you feel is compelling evidence they are cheating, you just want to find out what is going on. Perhaps yo might get your relationship back the way it was. When you bring up cheating your cheating spouse tells you you’re “crazy” or “paranoid”.  Finally you had enough deciding you cannot live like this any longer. This is usually the scenario that occurs before a victim of cheating decides to retain a New Jersey Private Investigator to conduct a cheating spouse investigation.

After conducting much research you decide you need to hire a New Jersey Private Investigator in order to obtain the evidence to confirm your cheating spouse is in fact being unfaithful to you. In a previous article I had discussed the process of retaining a New Jersey Private Investigator. It is important to know the type of evidence that might be gathered in a Cheating Spouse Investigation. I discussed my investigative background and thirty-five years experience in the Jersey City Police Department and the fact I was the former Chief of that Agency. Additionally I went over what you should expect to occur during a pre-retainer consultation with a Private Investigator before you decide to move forward and initiate a cheating spouse investigation. The most important decision you will now make is which New Jersey Private Investigator you should retain for your Infidelity Investigation.  I cannot stress enough how important it is that you do not hire a National Private Investigator Firm that tells you they have access to hundreds of Private Investigators.  These national  firms are nothing more than advertising platforms similar to “UBER”. If you decide against hiring me as your New Jersey Private investigator, there are numerous Private Investigator Firms being operated by professionals with integrity. However, it is essential to conduct your due diligence research because there are also many unscrupulous Private Investigators in New Jersey.

I have a trusted friend who I run my articles by in order that I have “another set of eyes” review what I plan to publish, the goal being constructive criticism. When he looks at this particular article I expect him to say something to the effect of “Bob be careful not to make it sound to be sales focused but shift it towards the needs/questions of the reader”. I get what my friend is advising me, however, I truly believe that in writing about issues, as personal and mentally distressing as infidelity in a relationship is that the persons who are victims of a cheating spouse need to know the process of hiring a New Jersey Private Investigator and what investigatory options are available in addition to what the entire process could look like from the initial consultation to the conclusion of the investigation. While I am in the business to be “hired as An investigator to conduct investigations” I pride myself in telling the client the truth about expectations of a cheating spouse investigation. I will more often than not straight out tell perspective clients that in New Jersey in most instances the fact that a spouse has cheated will be legally insignificant when it comes to equitable distribution of marital property in a divorce action, although in some instances it can certainly provide leverage to lead to a more favorable distribution. This fact has very rarely dissuaded a client from proceeding with an Infidelity Investigation, the reason for this is that most people want evidence to present to their cheating partner who had been deceiving and hurting them for so long.

You Took The Step Of Consulting With A Private Investigator For Purposes Of Conducting A Cheating Spouse Investigation, Now What Can You Expect?

The beginning of a successful Cheating Spouse Investigation begins with thorough planning and meticulous preparation by the Private Investigator. As I had related in Part 2, of this article I conduct a detailed interview regarding the subject’s friends, workplace, habits, hobbies and favorite places to go. I will ask for more information than you would ever expect, this informational seeking interview will exceed industry standards, i.e. doctor appointments, therapy appointments, gyms frequented, preferred grocery stores, restaurants etc. The acquiring of this information prior to the initiation of an Infidelity  Surveillance allows for a clear picture of the targets routine and helps me avoid trying to obtain this information from the client while out in the field conducting the Infidelity Investigation. During this period of time I will be asking you to provide photos of the subject and of all other people you might think could be involved (if you possess these photos) i.e. the other person in the triangle, friends your spouse might be with, vehicles your partner drives, of course all of these photos may not be available but the more information I obtain the better. In addition, it is always good to remember that studies have shown there are actually days of the year that cheating spouses will cut out time to be with there lovers, it’s not a guarantee but these are days worth considering.

The next step for a Private Investigator in an Infidelity Investigation will be dependent on the circumstances of the particular facts surrounding the suspected infidelity, I might suggest a background inquiry of the cheating spouse or others who might be involved, specifically the person you may suspect your spouse may be cheating with. Most if not all Cheating Spouse Investigations are going to rely heavily on surveillance activities, with that said, it is obviously very important the surveillance is conducted so as the target of the observation is clueless to what is going on. For this reason it is crucial for you be honest and up front in the initial interview when asked if you had ever indicated to your spouse that you would “hire a private investigator”, “have him/her followed”, or any similar statements. If you had made such statements be sure to disclose them during the initial interview, armed with that knowledge adjustments can be made by the Private Investigator to the investigation strategy in order to ensure the integrity of the surveillance.

Pre-planning Of Surveillance Activities In A Cheating Spouse Investigation.

Prior to Google Mapping and other advancements in technology, in order to do a surveillance job properly the Private investigator would be remiss if he did not go into the field in order to reconstruct the surveillance location/locations prior to initiating the Infidelity Surveillance. However, it is now possible for the Private Investigator to create an accurate surveillance plan prior to commencing the covert operation through the use of different mapping systems currently available. This allows the Investigator to locate a suitable area to set up a surveillance location, look for potential problems and scout ahead for likely entrances and exits to the area.

Preparation by the Private Investigator on the day prior to surveillance: (none of this surveillance prep is charged to a client). A mapping system satellite search and photo screenshots of the subject property and surrounding area (work and home) associated with the investigation, i.e. Roads, nearby neighborhoods, major highways, research of the town and/or municipalities including the police department, its levels of manpower, significant policing issues and the location of police headquarters. Other important research included political management structure of the city, median income, ethnic breakdown as well as other historical data available from other sources concerning the area. At this time you might be thinking, “why does this guy need all of this information”? This extensive research is conducted in an effort to have a cover story prepared in the event the Private Investigator is confronted while conducting surveillance. While armed with this extensive information the investigator will have prepared a believable story in order to account for my presence in an area should he be challenged; by having such a “cover story” prepared the Private investigator is in a position to protect the investigation by deflecting suspicion if challenged by a concerned neighbor or other person.

Another very important asset a New Jersey Private Investigator should have is the ability to deploy the proper surveillance vehicle into the field dependent on the needs of the investigation.  For instance, I personally have three surveillance vehicles I am able to deploy, a high end SUV, a “working class” SUV, and most importantly a dedicated surveillance van. The surveillance van enables the private investigator the opportunity to conduct observation and obtain photographs from the rear of the vehicle; who the van is observed by area residents all that is discernible is the fact that there is a parked unoccupied late model vehicle in the area.

Often times during a surveillance in a Cheating Spouse Investigation it will become necessary for the Private Investigator to follow the subject of the investigation in a vehicle, whether it be day or night, each comes with its own downfalls, one thing is clear, on television the producers make it look a whole lot easier than it really is. Although during the day it is much easier to blend in with other traffic that is out and about, it is also much easier to have this same volume of traffic obstruct your surveillance at critical moments. During the evening hours in moderate traffic conditions you are much less noticeable, and in most instances it is possible to stay close enough to keep up with the subject. However, the real problem occurs during the late evening and early morning hours when you are on either very rural roads or other roads that are devoid of traffic, in other words, just your vehicle and the other vehicle. There are several ways to account for this, first and foremost the quality of the intelligence acquired during the interview is a key to successful surveillances, additionally, any surveillance that is likely to involve “tailing” another vehicle should involve at least two investigators; if a private investigator does not inform you of the benefit of two person surveillance teams, you should look elsewhere.

In a recent case I had a client with expectations that I alone could follow the subject of an investigation (unrelated to a Cheating Spouse Investigation) from Atlantic County into Manhattan on a Saturday Afternoon during the holiday season with the goal of confirming the final destination of the target of the mobile surveillance. The client could provide no other intelligence on where the subject of the surveillance might be headed in New York City. I told the client that his expectations were close to impossible and recommended other surveillance options and plans such as a multi investigator mobile surveillance to him, a strategy to which he reluctantly agreed and which was ultimately successful. The thing is, if I would have just went along with exactly what the client had wanted and ultimately have lost the subject of the investigation somewhere in North Jersey, which more than likely would have happened, if in fact I had even made it to North Jersey. I would have still been paid but would have not achieved the objective of the surveillance; to me this result is an undesirable outcome and a waste of the client’s money. The point I am making is that it would have been irresponsible of me as a New Jersey Private Investigator  to not inform the client of the futility of one person following a car into New York City on a Saturday Afternoon during the Christmas Season. The client is the boss, if he had insisted that proceed I with a one man surveillance I would have given it a go, and went ahead with it, but it is my responsibility to be up front and truthful with the client regarding the chances for success while offering alternative methods to achieve the objectives of the investigation.

This article is Part #3, of a multi part series on Infidelity in a relationship and what you can do about it. Part #4, will discuss what you can expect after the completion of the meticulous preparation required which I had cited here and what the actual field Investigation might look like at the time it actually begins its field investigation.

About the author: Bob Cowan is the owner of Cowan Investigations a full service New Jersey Private Investigations Firm, Bob is the former Chief of the Jersey City Police Department and has 35 years experience as a police officer in New Jersey’s second largest municipality.

If you wish to speak with me regarding this article, or if you need a consultation regarding it’s contents please do not hesitate to call me at 732-837-8444, seven days a week 8:00am to 8:00pm.

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