3D Printing and Forensic Artists Meet in Florida to Crack Cold Cases

Forensic artists gather in Florida this week with the goal of cracking cold cases. Each victim’s skull has been replicated using 3D printing. The forensic artists are using the 3D printed skulls, which reveal the contours of the face, the size of the nose, the distance between the victim’s eyes, to draw a picture of the victim. The […]

WSJ: Low Salaries for Medical Examiners Contributes to Forensic Pathologist Shortage, Rural States Must Increase Appeal

The Wall Street Journal writes that the relatively low pay of medical examiners, a mere $185,000 compared to $335,000 for holding a similar position with a private hospital, contributes to the shortage of medical examiners across the country. For four months this year, Montana did not have a single medical examiner in the state and while the state had the […]

Backlog at Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences could threaten speedy trial rights

The backlog has left some suspects waiting in prison for over a year without a trial, and further delays could lead suspected criminals to walk out of jail if speedy trials right are violated. In Colbert County, Micheal Logan has been charged with the capital murder of his 2-year-old son and has been incarcerated for […]

A Solution for DNA Fallibility: Probabilistic Genotyping

NPR reports on the finding by the Texas Forensic Science Commission that procedures used by Texas labs are outdated. NPR reports that a solution, probabilistic genotyping, may be the solution for Texas crime labs that had been using cutting-edge ‘testing kits’ to extract DNA from crime scenes, but then, wrongfully, analyzing those samples with math that’s not suited […]

Match statistics can be misleading when searching large DNA databases

Analysts at an Arizona state crime laboratory noticed a strange occurrence when two individuals in their database of 65,493-person database had the same two markers at nine of the 13 places on their listed DNA profile. If picking a random non-Hispanic person from the population, there is about a 1 in 754 million chance that the person […]

Oklahoma used wrong drug in the execution of Charles Warner

Warner’s autopsy report revealed that potassium acetate, rather than the potassium chloride which Oklahoma’s protocol calls for, was used in his execution. Warner’s execution had previously been stayed when another inmate’s execution was botched on the day Warner had been scheduled for execution. Governor Mary Fallin recently put a hold on all executions in the […]

Support for Forensic Science Research

A just-released NAS report, here, on “improving the scientific role of the National Institute of Justice.” A brief description: The National Academy of Sciences has published the report Support for Forensic Science Research: Improving the Scientific Role of the National Institute of Justice, which is an independent and rigorous review of NIJ’s contribution to forensic science […]