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Forensic Science

A learning center for students about the various forensic science techniquest.
by

Julie Ramsay

on 28 May 2010

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Transcript of Forensic Science

Forensic Science Welcome to the exciting world of Forensic Science. Police and detectives use many tools and techniques to help them solve the many crimes that happen all over the world. When a crime is committed, the police and detectives spend many hours carefully collecting evidence at the crime scene to be processed in the crime labs.

"Every Contact Leaves a Trace" Every person who enters a scene leaves something behind that can be linked back to them. People leave hair or fibres from their clothes at the crime scene. People can also take things away with them from a crime scene. Often people are not aware of this type of evidence called contact evidence. It is very hard to see with the naked eye. It is this trace evidence that is so important to forensic scientists and detectives since this evidence can often lead to the solving of the crimes.
How to Explore Visit each of the magnifying glasses to learn about a forensic technique that is used by forensic scientist as they work with evidence from crime scenes to solve the mysteries of criminal activity. Once you have finished exploring all the magnifying glasses, go to the CSI labs to test your skills as a forensic scientist! Notes for the Teacher Standards This presentation is meant for the students to use to help develop an awareness of the various forensic techniques. Each magnifying glass contains a variety of digital resources that the students will explore to assist them in gaining an understanding of forensic techniques. There is no set sequence for the exploration of this presentation, however, the students should first read the introductory message for some background information and instructions. Once the students have completed their exploration of each magnifying glass, then they should proceed to the CSI website to test their skills at being forensic scientists. Specific Learner Expectations Students will:
1. Observe a set of footprints, and infer the direction and speed of travel.
2. Recognize that evidence found at the scene of an activity may have unique characteristics that allow an investigator to make inferences about the participants and the nature of theactivity, and give examples of how specific evidence may be used.
3. Investigate evidence and link it to a possible source; e.g., by:
classifying footprints, tire prints and soil samples from a variety of locations
analyzing the ink from different pens,using paper chromatography
analyzing handwriting samples to identify the handwriting of a specific person
comparing samples of fabric
classifying fingerprints collected from a variety of surfaces. Fingerprints Using fingerprints to identify a person has been used for a lot longer than most people realize. There is good evidence that the Chinese used fingerprints to sign legal documents as long ago as 1000 BC.

The resouces below will help you to learn about fingerprints. Watch the video and visit the websites to collect information on fingerprints. There is also an activity to help you collect fingerprints of your own.

http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=E2DD2DA0-3AFF-40EB-8F2A-95F0FE71EE60 http://ridgesandfurrows.homestead.com/fingerprint_patterns.html http://www.police.windsor.on.ca/Community%20Services_new/Just%20for%20Kids/csi/fingerprint%20information.htm Activities http://www.nist.gov/public_affairs/licweb/suspect.htm http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/dillinger/sfeature/sf_whodunit.html# http://www.lots-of-kids-games.com/fingerprint-science-experiment.html DNA 'DNA fingerprinting' or DNA typing (profiling) as it is now known, was first discovered in 1985 by an English geneticist named Alec Jeffreys. Dr. Jeffreys found that certain regions of DNA contained sequences that were repeated over and over again next to each other. He also discovered that these repeated sections were different from one person to the next. Dr. Jeffreys created the ability to perform human identity tests from these experiments with DNA and repeated patterns.

The resouces below will help you to learn about DNA profiling. Watch the video and visit the websites to collect information on DNA profiling. There is also an activity where you can practice your skill at matching DNA profiles.
http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=2AEC51EA-9D17-4C61-BF5B-5DF33C8E1022 http://www.amnh.org/ology/genetics# http://www.nist.gov/public_affairs/licweb/dnastep.htm (This website provides information about genetics. The activity called "DNA in a Blender" is an experiment for you to try.) http://www.ornl.gov/sci/techresources/Human_Genome/elsi/forensics.shtml Tire Impressions When it comes to investigating a crime scene and collecting evidence, tire impressions or prints are important pieces of evidence. Tire impressions can be as different from one another as fingerprints.Tire impressions can tell detectives and forensic scientists many things about a vehicle.

The resouces below will help you to learn about tire impressions. Watch the videos and visit the websites to collect information on tire impressions.
http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=0D64CACB-1886-4AEA-BD95-ECF4FB9ACF0E http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=B9B8692B-4595-41BB-9EA5-4EE6241E44EB http://www.enotes.com/forensic-science/tire-tracks Activities http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/sheppard/analyze.html Activity You can collect tire impressions very easily. Using your pencil and white paper, go out and collect some rubbings from four different vehicles.

Remember to be safe and only approach cars that are parked and there is no driver in the car. Chromotography Chromotography is a forensic technique that is used to separate mixtures of chemicals so forensic scientists can uncover the mystery chemical. This process is used on unknown liquids, gas, chemicals, drugs and even on ink.

The resouces below will help you to learn about chromotography. Read the pages below to collect information on chromotography. You will need to zoom into the pages so that you can read them. There is also an activity where you can practice your chromotography expertise.
Activity http://www.exploratorium.edu/science_explorer/black_magic.html Hair and Fibre When physical contact occurs between two people, objects, or individuals and objects, hair and fiber evidence is often left behind. Hair and fibre are more likely to be left behind depending on what the contact was, how long the contact lasted and the surface that was involved in the contact. The direct transfer of hairs from the head of an individual to the clothing of another individual is called a primary transfer. When hairs have already been shed and are transferred to an individual, it is called secondary transfer.

The resouces below will help you to learn about hair and fibre forensics. Watch the video and visit the websites to collect information on hair and fibre forensics. There is also an activity on the second information website where you can practice your skill at matching hair and fibre samples. http://player.discoveryeducation.com/index.cfm?guidAssetId=DA170778-6F8A-42E8-AB77-1F364DDE78B3 http://www.policensw.com/info/forensic/forensic7a.html http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#hairsfibers (When you arrive at this website
go to the Hair and Fibre PowerPoint to view the information and play the matching activity. Footprints Footprints can be a rich source of evidence in a crime scene reconstruction because they can link a suspect to the crime scene. Even if a suspect says they were not there, their footprints, if matched, can tell a different story. Footprints have proved to be especially important in cases of homicide, assault, or robbery. When someone is at the scene of the crime, their soles come into contact with surfaces and leave an imprint, visible or not, which can be detected, examined, and assessed.

The resouces below will help you to learn about footprints. Visit the website to collect information on footprints. There is also activities where you can practice your skill at identifying footprint evidence. Activity http://www.science.marshall.edu/murraye/Footprint%20Lab.html http://www.cyberbee.com/whodunnit/foot.html http://cyberbee.com/whodunnit/crimescene.html Handwriting Analysis: Graphology While graphology is not regarded as forensic evidence, it is still often used in combination with other techniques to gather information about criminals to aid authorities in their investigations. Forensic scientists use handwriting analysis for two purposes. One is to authenticate documents such as records, diaries, wills, and signatures. The second purpose for which handwriting analysis is used is to compare a crime suspect's handwriting with the handwriting on a ransom note or other communication from a crime.

The resouces below will help you to learn about graphology. Visit the website to collect information on graphology. There is also an activity where you can practice your skill at comparing handwriting samples. http://science.howstuffworks.com/handwriting-analysis1.htm Activity http://forensics.rice.edu/html/handwriting.html Blood http://science.howstuffworks.com/bloodstain-pattern-analysis1.htm http://science.howstuffworks.com/bloodstain-pattern-analysis3.htm The forensic analysis of a crime scene will sometimes involve the analysis of blood. Whether in the form of fresh liquid, dried blood, or patchy drops or stains, blood can be a treasure trove of information. For example, the pattern of a bloodstain can tell a forensic scientist or detective a great deal of information about the nature of the accident or crime.

The resouces below will help you to learn about blood stain patterns. Visit the websites to collect information on blood stain patterns. http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#blood (Click on the "Blood Basics" powerpoint on this website.) http://forensics.rice.edu/ General Learner Expectations Students will:
6.8: Apply observation and inference skills to recognize and interpret patterbs and to
distnguish a specific pattern from a group of similar patterns.
6.9: Apply knowledge of the properties and interactions of materials to the investigation and identification of a material sample. Bibliography Images Retrieved from: http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=download&id=178924
http://www.clker.com/clipart-2945.html
http://webclipart.about.com/od/specialtyclipar1/l/blprint4.htm
http://www.sxc.hu/photo/942290
http://www.sxc.hu/photo/331979
http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1103797
http://www.sxc.hu/photo/759993
http://www.teacherfiles.com/clip_art_shapes.htm eNotes.com. (2006). World of Forensic Science: Blood. Retrieved from http://www.enotes.com/forensic-science/blood
eNotes.com. (2006). World of Forensic Science: Blood Splatter. Retrieved from http://www.enotes.com/forensic-science/blood-spatter
eNotes.com. (2006). World of Forensic Science: Tire Tracks. Retrieved from http://www.enotes.com/forensic-science/tire-tracks
eNotes.com. (2006). World of Forensic Science: Handwriting Analysis. Retrieved from http://www.enotes.com/forensic-science/handwriting-analysis
The Science Spot. (2009). Forensic Science Lesson Plans: Fingerprinting. Retrieved from http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#Anchor1
The Science Spot. (2009). Forensic Science Lesson Plans: Chromotography. Retrieved from http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#Anchor1
The Science Spot. (2009). Forensic Science Lesson Plans: Impression Evidence. Retrieved from http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#Anchor1
The Science Spot. (2009). Forensic Science Lesson Plans: Chromotography. Retrieved from http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#Anchor1
The Science Spot. (2009). Forensic Science Lesson Plans: Hairs & Fibers. Retrieved from http://www.sciencespot.net/Pages/classforsci.html#Anchor1
Suite 101.com. (2004). A Brief History of Fingerprinting. Retrieved from http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/crime_stories/105088
The Blues Brothers. (1980). Peter Gunn Theme. Atlantic Recording
Corporation. New York.
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