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Collects medical evidence from body
Tissue samples, Bullets, Trace evidence, X-rays, Fluid samples, Information from the scene
• Circumstantial: Inference or speculation
• Material: Personal knowledge or observation
• Physical: Projectiles, fingerprints, autopsy findings, bones!
can be objective (tangible) or subjective (motive)
Detailed record of handling of evidence from crime scene context, recovery, analysis, presentation at trial. Find at scene and document it- photographs, reports. Record how, who, what, labels, and #
can prove the existence of a crime or connections to a crime
-FS provides information and professional opinion to investigations, attorneys, judges, juries or guilt of the accused
-used interchangably with forensic science
-refer to the activities of a full-service forensic science lab
-collect evidence, analyst it, DNA analysis, fire arms and ballistics, finger prints, trace evidence analysis, etc.
Dept of Justice (FBI in Quantico, DEA)
Dept of Treasury (Secret Service, IRS)
Dept of Interior (USFWS Forensic Lab)
US Postal Service
facilities using scientific or technical methods to process and analyze evidence
(a) Improve the national forensic capacity and capabilities of Member States to meet internationally accepted standard;
(b) Ensure the worldwide availability and accessibility of internationally accepted standards;
(c) Increase the use of forensic science services, data and information for evidence-based operational purposes, strategic interventions and policy and decision-making.
- professor of anatomy
- took over CIHLI after Snow
- developed technology for stature based on length of longbones
(Krogman, Snow,Stewart, Trotter) 1938-1971
- started when American Academy for Forensic Sciences met in 1972- anthropologists Ellis Kerley and Clyde Snow organized a physical anthropology section
- 5 years later- American Board of Forensic Anthropology was created
- now = fasted growing field
- it was not until the 60s when graduate courses and training programs specifically for forensics became available
(Dwight, Dorsey,Hrdlicka) 1800s-1938
Bruce Anderson Robin Reineke
Colibri Center for Human Rights
Detecting human remains Assessing context Documenting scene Recovering human remains
Application of archaeology and bioarchaeology for legal purposes
1) Visual assessment
2) Remote sensing
3) Intrusive/archaeological testing
- Intruding upon plaintiff’s solitude or seclusion
- Examples of intruding: trespassing on private property, entering someone’s home without permission, using hidden cameras
- In most cases, if you’re in public, you have no expectation of privacy
- But in privacy of your home, there is an expectation that people have a right to peace and quiet; “right to be let alone”
Goals & activities
Articulated, disarticulated Extended, flexed
Putrefaction(internal breakdown of tissue)- death of cell by product fuels this
Algor Mortis- post mortem cooling
Ocular changes- if open thin film on eye and then cloudy. intra ocular fluid dies
Livor Mortis- discoloration due to settling of blood
Rigor Mortis- stiff muscles
Insect activity- very quick
Discoloration in abdominal
Marbling- toxic chemical in blood. very dark blood vessels
Initial skeletonization- all soft tissue lost
bleaching means it was exposed for a long time
Mummification- drying of tissues
Adipocere- waxy substance usually adheres to bones and acts like soap
- William Prosser, legal scholar
- Identified that there were different privacy torts
3. Private facts
4. False light
Use of someone’s name or likeness for commercial purposes without permission
o Commercialization – tort used to protect people who want privacy
o Right of publicity – tort used to protect a celebrity’s right to have his or her name, picture likeness, voice and identity used for commercial purposes without permission
tort used to protect a celebrity’s right to have his or her name, picture likeness, voice and identity used for commercial purposes without permission
Generally, right of publicity is a personal right that dies with the person. But some states (California and Tennessee in particular) have passed legislation making publicity rights that can be inherited. Think Elvis and movie stars who have died. Publicity rights as property rights allows heirs to the estate to profit from the dead person’s likeness and name
Roberson v. Rochester Folding Box Co., New York Court of Appeals 1902
Company uses a photo of Roberson on their box. “Flower of the Family” was put on billboards for flour. Roberson sues but loses. Loses because the court says that there’s nothing in the law that would protect her.
When celebrities who are endorsing products, if they are advertising, can they sue if they don’t get paid?
Bette Midler refused to appear in a Ford Motor Co. advertisement that used one of her hit songs (Ford had permission to use the song, but not her voice). Name of the song is “Do You Want to Dance?”
Ford hired backup singer to sing the song and sound as much like Midler as possible. Midler prevails, $400,000, because of appropriation
Note: ad would lead public to believe they heard Midler’s voice and endorsement
Right of publicity and OJ Simpson
In civil lawsuit, Simpson was ordered to pay $33.5 million to the Brown and Goldman families. In September 2006, Fred Goldman filed suit to win control of Simpson’s right of publicity as way to pay for the judgment. In October 2006, court dismissed Goldman’s lawsuit. In 2007, Goldman sued and won the rights to OJ’s book, If I Did It. Goldman added commentary and the subtitle “Confessions of the Killer”
- Generally speaking: photographers who trespass to take photos are subject to criminal & civil punishment unless they have consent to be there.
- Photographers can take pictures of anyone in public for news purposes w/out consent (can't be used for commercial purposes w/out consent)
- When private facts are true, there's no libel claim
- But when disclosure of the private facts is embarrassing and humiliating, there may be a case
Is Sipple’s sexual orientation newsworthy? (Sipple cannot control what is being posted about him.) His family disowns him upon hearing about his orientation.
News outlets don't need permission if they are publishing something that is newsworthy. The Superior Court in San Francisco dismissed the suit.
have the legal responsibility to certify deaths of people who passed when they were not under the care of physicians
information on the skeleton
codes required medical opinion in suspicious deaths
- was adopted in the US in 1600 and gets tied to law enforcement
- not until the 1860s that people with medical training were envolved
- Massachusetts developed first medical examiner system- still in effect today
(pathologists must have medical training)
Circumstances requiring ME
1. violent deaths
2. suspicious deaths
3. sudden or unexpected deathsdeath with no physician present
1. Cause of death- (the disease of injury responsible for the lethal sequence of events)
2. Manner of death- (how the cause of death arose)
a. natural- disease or aging
b. non-natural- homicide, suicide, accident, or undetermined
4. Time of death
the amount of evidence that makes it into trial is only a portion of the total evidence
*evidence left at a crime scene
*evidence collected by investigators
*evidence that can be admitted or tested
*evidence allowed to court according to rules of evidence
*some states are Frye and some are Daubert
- a person who applies scientific evidence in court
*work within the justice system
*have become identified primarily with law enforcement*image inhanced on television- misleading-
FS work closely with police agencies and prosecuting/ defense attourneys. Texas rangers, FBI agents, crime scene investigators etc..
federal, state, and local agencies, forensic labs, police departments, medical examiner/ coroner offices, or independent
application of dental science to the identification of unknown human remains and bite marks
application of psychiatric, behavioral, and clinical perspectives to legal issues
2.. asses trauma
3. determine time of death
4.. assist with recovery
5. establish positive identification
Webster and Parkman Case
- 1849 parkman murder- first time skeletal evidence was used in court
- both professors at Harvard
- Webster murders Parkman and dismembers his body- throws remains everywhere but burns head
- Dr. Holms and Wyman (Harvard anatomists) examined bones and determined that they were 1. Human 2. Male 3. From an older personFound that dentures did not burn up in furnace so they were able to trace those back to dental records
· first to conduct research aimed at sex determination
- 1897- he discovered that the humeral head was a better indicator than the femoral headhe presented these findings at a conference and was criticized- then eventually quit FA- joined navy and died at sea
· – played seminal role in physical anthropology
- father of physical anthro
- he was a grave robber- his skeleton collection is now at the Smithsonian
- studied skeletal identification, trauma, and ancestry
- photographic superimposition
· 1939 “Guide to identification of human skeletal material”
- first time forensic anthropologist actually publishes work in forensic anthropology
· leader of CIHLI
- studied anatomy and physical anthropology at University of Kentucky
- worked closely with Trotter
· took over Smithsonian after Hrlicka-known as “The essential anthropologist" based on his publication "essentials of forensic anthropology"
- 1. Are they bone? are they human?
- 2. single individual or multiple individuals?
- 3. information regarding time of death?
- 4. Can you tell the age?
- 5. Sex?
- 6. can you tell the ancestry?
- 7. What was the height?
- 8. anomalies that may be documented in medical history?
- 9. any of those anomalies the cause of death?
1. go in blind (knowing nothing about case)- old school
2. give me all relevant data you can so I can be informed- new school
but either way…
· view the scene
· create a plan of approach
· document everything
- people make hasty, bad decisions when disposing of a body.
3 main ways:
Fire, burial, or surface disposal.
- in a shallow grave (2-3ft) animals can smell it because decomp.- the deeper it is the harder it is to find- (6ft)
- animal with 4 limbs
- over 400mil years old
- almost every creature alive has this same body planthis causes problems with identification
- are the only bipedal mammalswe have morphological (shape) differences (from animals) in our bones
death is not a singular event, but a process
1. body composition
2. cause and manner of death
3. depositional context4. environmental conditions
act to temporarily arrest, retard or accelerate the decomp process
ex: cold and dry conditions can arrest decomp (bodies on Mt. Everest)
the byproduct of autolysis- putrefaction is the consumption of body tissue through proliferation of bacteria
- when body decomp becomes visible
- becomes pale
- skin slippage occurs
1. – 2-3 days unrefrigerated corpse
- skin slippage- epidermis slips off of the dermis
- gloving- when your hand skin slips off
- discoloration- in the abdomen green color- when the bacteria in your guts eat you
- marbling- internal bacteria colonize- hemolysis of blood
- bloating- swelling of tissue during release of gasses 2-8days pm (especially in face)
- liquefaction- results as fat liquefies in the abdominal thoracic cavities- causes sagging of flesh and caving in of internal abdominal cavity.- adipocere formation- formation of “grave wax” when lipids become a thick, greasy, hydrogenated substance. *occurs in wetter environments
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