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Forensic Science

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Maha AL-Thani

on 2 January 2014

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Transcript of Forensic Science

Functions of the Forensic Scientist
Forensic Science
Richard Saferstein, (2011). Criminalistics: An Introduction to Forensic Science. 10th ed. New Jersey : Pearson.
Learning Objectives
- Define and distinguish forensic science and criminalistics.
- Recognize the major contributors to the development of forensic science.
- Account for the rapid growth of forensic laboratories in the past forty years.
- Describe the services of a typical comprehensive crime laboratory in the criminal justice system.
- Compare and contrast the Frye and Daubert decisions relating to the admissibility of scientific evidence in the courtroom.
- Explain the role and responsibilities of the expert witness.
- Understand what specialized forensic services, aside from the crime laboratory, are generally available to law enforcement personnel.
Introduction to
Literary Roots
Statue of Sherlock Holmes in
(1859 – 1930) was a Scottish physician and writer who is most noted for his fictional stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes, which are generally considered milestones in the field of crime fiction.
fo·ren·sic sci·ence /fe'renzik,-sik 'sīens/
Forensic Science
Crime Laboratories
Today many believe that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had a considerable influence on popularizing scientific crime-detection methods through his fictional character Sherlock Holmes. The first to applied the newly developing principles of serology, fingerprinting, firearms identification, and questioned-document examination long before their value was first recognized and accepted by real-life criminal investigators.
"The application of science to the criminal and civil law that are enforced by police agencies in a criminal justice system."
Services of crime laboratory
Basic Services
The eleven sections of the American Academy of Forensic Science:
Physical Science Unit
Biology Unit
Firearms Unit
Document Examination Unit
Photography Unit
Digital and Multimedia Science.
Engineering Sciences.
Physical Anthropology.
Psychiatry/Behavioral Sciences.
Questioned Documents.
science application
-Drug identification
-Soil and mineral anlysis
-Examination of trace physical evidence
Staffed with biologists and biochemists who identify and perform DNA profiling on dries bloodstains and other body fluids compare hair and fibers, and identify and compare botanical materials such as wood and plants

Crime Labs in the U.S
Examine firearms, discharged bullets, cartridge cases, shotgun shells, and ammunition of all types
Garments and other objects are also examined to detect firearms discharge residues and to approximate the distance from a target at which a weapon was fired.

International Crime Labs
-Studies the handwriting and typewriting
-Analyzing paper and ink , inteneted writing, obliterations, erasures, and burned or charred documents

-Require the use of highly specialized photographic techniques such as digital imaging, ultraviolet, infrared, and X-ray to make invisible information visible to the naked eye.
-Prepare photographic exhibits for courtroom presentation.

Optional Services
Mathieu Orfila
Toxicology Unit
Latent Fingerprint Unit
Polygraph Unit
Voiceprint Analysis Unit
Crime-scene Investigation Unit
-Examine body fluids and organs to determine presence and absence of drugs and poisons.
-May be separate unit or under medical examiner or coroner’s office

Process and examines evidence for latent fingerprint when they are submitted in conjunction with other laboratory examinations

-Lie detector recognized as essential tool of the criminal investigator rather than the forensic scientists.
-Its functions are handled by people trained in the techniques of criminal investigation and interrogation

-In cases involving telephoned threats or tape-recorded messages
-Sound spectrograph
Dispatches Specially trained personnel (civilian and/or police) to the crime scene to collect and preserve physical evidence that will later be processed at the crime laboratory

Other Forensic Science Services
Forensic Psychiatry
Forensic Odontology
Forensic Engineering
Forensic Computer and Digital Analysis
Specialized area in which the relationship between human behavior and legal proceeding.
Father of Forensic Toxicology.
A native of Spain.
Teacher of medicine in France.
His publication of a scientific treatise on the detection of poisons and their effects on animals established forensic toxicology as a legitimate scientific endeavor.
Civil Cases
Determine whether people are competent to make decisions about preparing wills, settling property, or refusing medical treatment.
Criminal Cases
Evaluate behavioral disorders.
Determine whether people are competent to stand trial.
Help recognize victims when the body is left in an unrecognizable state.
Using dental records. ( X-ray , dental casts, photograph of person's smile )
Bite mark analysis.
Alphonse Bertillon
- Concerned with failure analysis, accident reconstruction, causes and origins of fires or explosions.
- Accident scenes are examined, photographs are reviewed, mechanical objects are inspected.
Father of Criminal Identification.
The first to devise a scientific system of personal identification, Anthropometry.
Anthropometry was eventually replaced by fingerprint.
Calvin Goddard
U.S Army Colonel.
Established the comparison microscope as the indispensable tool of the modern firearms examiner.
-Identification, collection, preservation, ad examination of information derived from computers and other digital devices ( cell phones).
-Recovery of deleted data from computer's hard drive and tracking of hacking activities.
Francis Galton
Developed a methodology of classifying fingerprints for filing.
Published a book called "Finger Prints". (1892)
The book contained the first statistical proof supporting the uniqueness of his method of personal identification.
His work describe the basic principles that form the present day system of fingerprint identification.
Leone Lattes
Professor of the Institute of Forensic Medicine.
Dr. Karl Landsteiner discovered that blood can be grouped into different categories. (A, B, O and AB)
This intrigued Dr. Lattes, so he devised a method for determining the blood group of a dried blood stain.
The technique was immediately applied to criminal investigation.
Albert S. Osborn
Developed the fundamental principals of document examination.
This was responsible for the acceptance of document as scientific evidence.
Published "Questioned Documents" (1910).
The book is still considered a prime refrence for document examiners.
Walter C. McCrone
Was the world's preeminent microscopist.
He was an advocate for applying microscopy to analytical problems.
He was a much-sought-after instructor.
Hans Gross
Author of "Handbuch für Untersuchungsrichter als System der Kriminalistik" later published in English under the title "Criminal Investigation".
He details that investigators should expect from the fields of microscopy, chemistry, physics, zoology, mineralogy, botany, anthropometry and fingerprinting.
Edmond Locard
Locard's principle holds that:

"the perpetrator of a crime will bring something into the crime scene and leave with something from it"
Both can be used as forensic evidence.
Dr. Locard became known as the Sherlock Holmes of France.
He formulated the basic principle of forensic science: "Every contact leaves a trace".
The FBI, under the directorship of J. Eddger Hoover organized a National Laboratory that offered forensic serveries to all law enforcement agencies.
The oldest forensic laboratory in the united states was that of Los Angeles Police Department.
The state of California has the model system of integrated forensic laboratories consisting of: regional and satellite facilities.
Great Britain has developed a national system of regional laboratories.
Home Office recognized the country's forensic laboratories into the Forensic Science Service.
H.O instituted a system in which police agencies are charged a fee for services rendered by the laboratory.
Evidence Examination
Expert Testimony
Full transcript