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Sample records for forensic disaster analysis

  1. Real-time Forensic Disaster Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wenzel, F.; Daniell, J.; Khazai, B.; Mühr, B.; Kunz-Plapp, T.; Markus, M.; Vervaeck, A.

    2012-04-01

    The Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM, www.cedim.de) - an interdisciplinary research center founded by the German Research Centre for Geoscience (GFZ) and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) - has embarked on a new style of disaster research known as Forensic Disaster Analysis. The notion has been coined by the Integrated Research on Disaster Risk initiative (IRDR, www.irdrinternational.org) launched by ICSU in 2010. It has been defined as an approach to studying natural disasters that aims at uncovering the root causes of disasters through in-depth investigations that go beyond the reconnaissance reports and case studies typically conducted after disasters. In adopting this comprehensive understanding of disasters CEDIM adds a real-time component to the assessment and evaluation process. By comprehensive we mean that most if not all relevant aspects of disasters are considered and jointly analysed. This includes the impact (human, economy, and infrastructure), comparisons with recent historic events, social vulnerability, reconstruction and long-term impacts on livelihood issues. The forensic disaster analysis research mode is thus best characterized as "event-based research" through systematic investigation of critical issues arising after a disaster across various inter-related areas. The forensic approach requires (a) availability of global data bases regarding previous earthquake losses, socio-economic parameters, building stock information, etc.; (b) leveraging platforms such as the EERI clearing house, relief-web, and the many sources of local and international sources where information is organized; and (c) rapid access to critical information (e.g., crowd sourcing techniques) to improve our understanding of the complex dynamics of disasters. The main scientific questions being addressed are: What are critical factors that control loss of life, of infrastructure, and for economy? What are the critical interactions between hazard - socio-economic systems - technological systems? What were the protective measures and to what extent did they work? Can we predict pattern of losses and socio-economic implications for future extreme events from simple parameters: hazard parameters, historic evidence, socio-economic conditions? Can we predict implications for reconstruction from simple parameters: hazard parameters, historic evidence, socio-economic conditions? The M7.2 Van Earthquake (Eastern Turkey) of 23 Oct. 2011 serves as an example for a forensic approach.

  2. Forensic Disaster Analysis in Near-real Time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunz, Michael; Zschau, Jochen; Wenzel, Friedemann; Khazai, Bijan; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Trieselmann, Werner

    2014-05-01

    The impacts of extreme hydro-meteorological and geophysical events are controlled by various factors including severity of the event (intensity, duration, spatial extent), amplification with other phenomena (multihazard or cascading effects), interdependencies of technical systems and infrastructure, preparedness and resilience of the society. The Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) has adopted the comprehensive understanding of disasters and develops methodologies of near real-time FDA as a complementing component of the FORIN program of IRDR. The new research strategy 'Near Real-Time Forensic Disaster Analysis (FDA)' aims at scrutinizing disasters closely with a multi-disciplinary approach in order to assess the various aspects of disasters and to identify mechanisms most relevant for an extreme event to become a disaster (e.g., causal loss analysis). Recent technology developments - which have opened unprecedented opportunities for real-time hazard, vulnerability and loss assessment - are used for analyzing disasters and their impacts in combination with databases of historical events. The former covers modern empirical and analytical methods available in engineering and remote sensing for rapid impact assessments, rapid information extraction from crowd sourcing as well as rapid assessments of socio-economic impacts and economic losses. The event-driven science-based assessments of CEDIM are compiled based on interdisciplinary expertise and include the critical evaluation, assessment, validation, and quantification of an event. An important component of CEDIM's FDA is the near real-time approach which is expected to significantly speed up our understanding of natural disasters and be used to provide timely, relevant and valuable information to various user groups within their respective contexts. Currently, CEDIM has developed models and methodologies to assess different types of hazard. These approaches were applied to several disasters including, for example, Super Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda (Nov. 2013), Central European Floods (June 2013), Hurricane Sandy (Oct. 2012), US Droughts (Summer 2012), or Typhoon Saola in Taiwan and Philippines (July 2012).

  3. Social Media in Crisis Management and Forensic Disaster Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dittrich, André; Lucas, Christian

    2014-05-01

    Today, modern sensors or sensor networks provide good quality measurements for the observation of large-scale emergencies as a result of natural disasters. Mostly however, only at certain points in their respective locations and for a very limited number of measurement parameters (e.g. seismograph) and not over the entire course of a disaster event. The proliferation of different social media application (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc.), yields the possibility to use the resulting data as a free and fast supplement or complement to traditional monitoring techniques. In particular, these new channels can serve for rapid detection, for information gathering for emergency protection and for information dissemination. Thus, each user of these networks represents a so-called virtual sensor ('social sensor'), whose eyewitness account can be important for understanding the situation on the ground. The advantages of these social sensors are the high mobility, the versatility of the parameters that can be captured (text, images, videos, etc.) as well as the rapid spread of information. Due to the subjective characteristics however, the data often show different quality and quantity. Against this background, it is essential for an application in crisis management to reasonably (pre-)process the data from social media. Hence, fully-automated processes are used which adequately filter and structure the enormous amount of information and associate it with an event, respectively, a geographic location. This is done through statistical monitoring of the volume of messages (Twitter) in different geographic regions of the world. In combination with a frequency analysis with respect to disaster-relevant terms (in 43 languages), thematic as well as spatio-temporal clustering, an initial assessment regarding the severity and extent of the detected event, its classification and (spatio-temporal) localization can be achieved. This detection in real time (2-5 minutes) thus allows gathering first responder reports or eyewitness reports, which can provide important information for a first situation analysis for the various officials and volunteers, especially in case of large-scale emergencies. Eventually, this can be used in combination with conventional sensors and information sources to conduct a detailed forensic disaster analysis of an event.

  4. Web-based Weather and Climate Information Service of Forensic Disaster Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mühr, Bernhard; Kunz, Michael; Köbele, Daniel

    2014-05-01

    Extreme meteorological events not only trigger natural disasters, they also control the impact of various catastrophes. Especially for cascading effects or in case of multihazards, for example when an earthquake occurs in conjunction with a cold wave, the actual weather situation might substantially boost the impact. Thus, reliable information on extreme meteorological events and the general weather condition during disasters is an important component of Forensic Disaster Analyses. The Web Service 'Wettergefahren-Frühwarnung' (early warning of weather hazards) provides information on imminent or just occurring unusual or extreme weather events worldwide. Of particular interest are events with a high impact and massive damage that occur around the globe, but with a special focus on Germany and Europe. The Service started on 1 February 2004 with an operational routine. During the last 10 years, 'Wettergefahren-Frühwarnun' examined and assessed more than 800 unusual or extreme weather events that occurred all over the world. Permanent availability, daily updated information, editorially enhanced reports on extreme or unusual weather events enriched by images and measured values, are the hallmarks of the internet project. All warnings, special notes, detailed and high-quality reports can be found in an ever-growing archive. In addition to daily monitoring and assessment of global weather events, 'Wettergefahren-Frühwarnung' also creates its own special maps and images. In recent years, increasingly complex codes have been developed that now produce many hundreds of weather charts for the entire world every 6 hours. Allegedly threatened areas or cities can be identified immediately. The maps give information about rainfall, temperature deviations, convection indices, wind, snow accumulation and much more. Additionally, for some 2800 cities worldwide, daily point forecasts are calculated and the predicted weather parameters are clearly arranged in tables for Germany, Europe, and the other continents. In 2007, 'Wettergefahren-Frühwarnung' became part of CEDIM and contributed to the activity of near-real time Forensic Disaster Analysis ahead, during and after a major event. Information is provided as text, own weather charts or data.

  5. Near-real-time Forensic Disaster Analysis: experiences from hurricane Sandy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunz, Michael; Mühr, Bernhard; Schröter, Kai; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Daniell, James; Khazai, Bijan; Wenzel, Friedemann; Vannieuwenhuyse, Marjorie; Comes, Tina; Münzberg, Thomas; Elmer, Florian; Fohringer, Joachim; Lucas, Christian; Trieselmann, Werner; Zschau, Jochen

    2013-04-01

    Hurricane Sandy was the last tropical cyclone of the 2012 Northern Atlantic Hurricane season that made landfall. It moved on an unusual track from the Caribbean to the East Coast of the United States from 24 to 30 October as a Category 1 and 2 Hurricane according to the Saffir-Simpson Scale. Along its path, the severe storm event caused widespread damage including almost 200 fatalities. In the early hours of 30 October, Sandy made landfall near Atlantic City, N.J. Sandy was an extraordinary event due to its multihazard nature and several cascading effects in the aftermath. From the hydro-meteorological perspective, most unusual was the very large spatial extent of up to 1,700 km. High wind speeds were associated with record breaking storm surges at the U.S. Mid- Atlantic and New England Coast during high (astronomical) tide, leading to widespread flooding. Though Sandy was not the most severe storm event in terms of wind speed and precipitation, the impact in the U.S. was enormous with total damage estimates of up to 90 billion US (own estimate from Dec. 2012). Although much better data emerge weeks after such an event, the Forensic Disaster Analysis (FDA) Task Force of the Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) made an effort to obtain a comprehensive and holistic overview of the causes, hazardous effects and consequences associated with Sandy immediately after landfall at the U.S. coast on 30 October 2012. This was done in an interdisciplinary way by collecting and compiling scattered and distributed information from available databases and sources via the Internet, by applying own methodologies and models for near-real time analyses developed in recent years, and by expert knowledge. This contribution gives an overview about the CEDIM-FDA analyses' results. It describes the situation that led to the extraordinary event, highlights the interaction of the tropical cyclone with other hydro-meteorological events, and examines the impacts such as social and economic losses including cascading effects, for example, due to power outages. It is examined how Sandy compares to historic hurricane events in the U.S., both from the hydro-meteorological and impact perspective. Direct and indirect losses are estimated by comparison with past events and with the help of an economic loss model that describes the interdependencies between various economic sectors (input-output approach) combined with an assessment of the industrial vulnerability against indirect damages.

  6. Near real time Forensic Disaster Analysis of the central European flood in June 2013 in Germany: Impact and management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Khazai, Bijan; Bessel, Tina; Möhrle, Stella; Dittrich, André; Schröter, Kai; Mühr, Bernhard; Elmer, Florian; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Trieselmann, Werner; Kunz, Michael

    2014-05-01

    Within its current research activity on near real time Forensic Disaster Analysis (FDA), researchers from the Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) aim to identify major risk drivers and to understand the root causes of disaster and infer the implications for disaster mitigation. A key component of this activity is the development of rapid assessment tools which allow for a science based estimate of disaster impacts. The central European flood in June 2013 caused in Germany severe damage to buildings, infrastructure and agricultural lands and has had a great impact on people, transportation and the economy. In many areas thousands of people were evacuated. Electrical grid and local water supply utilities failed during the floods. Furthermore, traffic was disrupted in the interregional transportation network including federal highways and long distance railways. CEDIM analysed the impact and management of the flood event within an FDA activity. An analysis on the amount and spatial distribution of flood-related Twitter messages in Germany revealed a high interest in the flood in the social media. Furthermore, an analysis of the resilience of selected affected areas in Germany has been carried out to assess the impact of the flood on the district level. The resilience indicator is based on social, economic and institutional indicators which are supplemented with information on the number of people evacuated and transportation disruptions. Combined with the magnitude of the event, an index is calculated that allows for a rapid initial but preliminary estimate of the flood impact. Results show high resilience of the administrative districts along the Danube while heavy impacts are seen along the Mulde and Elbe.

  7. Role of forensic pathologists in mass disasters.

    PubMed

    Schuliar, Yves; Knudsen, Peter Juel Thiis

    2012-06-01

    The forensic pathologist has always had a central role in the identification of the dead in every day practice, in accidents, and in disasters involving hundreds or thousands of victims. This role has changed in recent years, as advances in forensic odontology, genetics and anthropology have improved the chances of identifying victims beyond recognition. According to the Interpol DVI Guide, fingerprints, dental examination and DNA are the primary identifiers, and this has given new emphasis to the role of the forensic pathologist as the leader of a multidisciplinary team of experts in a disaster situation, based on his or her qualifications and the experience gained from doing the same work in the everyday situation of an institute of forensic medicine. PMID:22160735

  8. Forensic odontology, part 2. Major disasters.

    PubMed

    Hinchliffe, J

    2011-03-26

    We have only to look back over the last 12 months to realise that time and time again, an incident occurs where there are mass fatalities. These incidents have instant and long-lasting impact on families, communities and sometimes whole countries. The aim of this paper is to emphasise the need for an efficient and sensitive response to assist in the identification of victims of such incidents and the necessity for trained team responses. Many countries now have Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) teams that are multi-disciplinary, and plans and protocols in place in readiness. The paper can only hope to give a brief overview of the disaster situation for the reader: whole books have been written on this topic. The forensic odontologist has a major role in disaster incidents when there are accurate and available antemortem dental records. PMID:21436819

  9. Integrating forensic anthropology into Disaster Victim Identification.

    PubMed

    Mundorff, Amy Z

    2012-06-01

    This paper will provide mass fatality emergency planners, police, medical examiners, coroners and other Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) personnel ways to integrate forensic anthropologists into DVI operations and demonstrate how anthropological contributions have improved DVI projects. In mass disaster situations, anthropologists have traditionally been limited to developing biological profiles from skeletal remains. Over the past decade, however, anthropologists' involvement in DVI has extended well beyond this traditional role as they have taken on increasingly diverse tasks and responsibilities. Anthropological involvement in DVI operations is often dictated by an incident's specific characteristics, particularly events involving extensive fragmentation, commingling, or other forms of compromised remains. This paper will provide examples from recent DVI incidents to illustrate the operational utility of anthropologists in the DVI context. The points where it is most beneficial to integrate anthropologists into the DVI process include: (1) during recovery at the disaster scene; (2) at the triage station as remains are brought into the mortuary; and (3) in conducting the reconciliation process. Particular attention will be paid to quality control and quality assurance measures anthropologists have developed and implemented for DVI projects. Overall, this paper will explain how anthropological expertise can be used to increase accuracy in DVI while reducing the project's cost and duration. PMID:21877297

  10. The near real time Forensic Disaster Analysis of the central European flood in June 2013 - A graphical representation of the main results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schröter, Kai; Elmer, Florian; Trieselmann, Werner; Kreibich, Heidi; Kunz, Michael; Khazai, Bijan; Dransch, Doris; Wenzel, Friedemann; Zschau, Jochen; Merz, Bruno; Mühr, Bernhard; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Möhrle, Stella; Bessel, Tina; Fohringer, Joachim

    2014-05-01

    The Central European flood of June 2013 is one of the most severe flood events that have occurred in Central Europe in the past decades. All major German river basins were affected (Rhine, Danube, and Elbe as well as the smaller Weser catchment).In terms of spatial extent and event magnitude, it was the most severe event at least since 1950. Within the current research focus on near real time forensic disaster analysis, the Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) assessed and analysed the multiple facets of the flood event from the beginning. The aim is to describe the on-going event, analyse the event sources, link the physical characteristics to the impact and consequences of the event and to understand the root causes that turn the physical event into a disaster (or prevent it from becoming disastrous). For the near real time component of this research, tools for rapid assessment and concise presentation of analysis results are essential. This contribution provides a graphical summary of the results of the CEDIM-FDA analyses on the June 2013 flood. It demonstrates the potential of visual representations for improving the communication and hence usability of findings in a rapid, intelligible and expressive way as a valuable supplement to usual event reporting. It is based on analyses of the hydrometeorological sources, the flood pathways (from satellite imagery, data extraction from social media), the resilience of the affected regions, and causal loss analysis. The prototypical representation of the FDA-results for the June 2013 flood provides an important step in the development of graphical event templates for the visualisation of forensic disaster analyses. These are intended to become a standard component of future CEDIM-FDA event activities.

  11. Forensic video image analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, Thomas R.

    1997-02-01

    Forensic video image analysis is a new scientific tool for perpetrator enhancement and identification in poorly recorded crime scene situations. Forensic video image analysis is emerging technology for law enforcement, industrial security and surveillance addressing the following problems often found in these poor quality video recorded incidences.

  12. Forensic odontology in the disaster victim identification process.

    PubMed

    Pittayapat, P; Jacobs, R; De Valck, E; Vandermeulen, D; Willems, G

    2012-07-01

    Disaster victim identification (DVI) is an intensive and demanding task involving specialists from various disciplines. The forensic dentist is one of the key persons who plays an important role in the DVI human identification process. In recent years, many disaster incidents have occurred that challenged the DVI team with various kinds of difficulties related to disaster management and unique situations in each disaster. New technologies have been developed to make the working process faster and more effective and the different DVI protocols have been evaluated and improved. The aim of this article is to collate all information regarding diagnostic tools and methodologies pertaining to forensic odontological DVI, both current and future. It can be concluded that lessons learned from previous disaster incidents have helped to optimize working protocols and to develop new tools that can be applied in future DVI operation. The working procedures have been greatly improved by newly developed technologies. PMID:23000806

  13. Forensic Investigation of mass disasters in Nigeria: A review

    PubMed Central

    Obafunwa, John Oladapo; Faduyile, Francis Adedayo; Soyemi, Sunday Sokunle; Eze, Uwom Okereke; Nwana, Edmund J. C.; Odesanmi, William Olufemi

    2015-01-01

    This paper is to establish the present state of things in the country in terms of legal framework and the availability of personnel with a view to presenting an overview of proper mass disaster investigations. This is a retrospective review of mass disasters in Nigeria that occurred within the last 20 years. The study therefore reviews the state of the forensic investigation of the mass disasters as well as the efforts made to identify the victims of the disaster. The process of proper forensic investigation from the stage of evaluation of the scene and recovery process to the final identification of victims are presented to serve as a protocol for the country. The assessment of the present state of preparedness in Nigeria is also examined with a view to improving the practice to international standards. Data were retrieved from official documents from the aviation industry as well as Nigeria news reports. The standard protocols for disaster victim identification were retrieved from the guide released by the INTERPOL. The state of preparedness of the country and recommendations for improvement are presented. The Federal government and the states of the federation should without further delay put in place the process of reviewing the law of Coroner's system and provide the enabling environment for the proper forensic investigation. The training curriculum of the first responders should incorporate mass disaster investigations in order to produce efficient officers and personnel. A functional disaster victim identification (DVI) team is strongly advocated to incorporate different professionals involved in mass disaster management. PMID:25657485

  14. Future project concerning mass disaster management: a forensic odontology prospectus.

    PubMed

    Nuzzolese, Emilio; Di Vella, Giancarlo

    2007-08-01

    The world has experienced a plethora of mass disasters in recent years: acts of terrorism, bombings, earthquakes, hurricanes, typhoons, air crashes and other transportation mishaps, not to mention armed conflicts and migrants drowned in the Mediterranean Sea. In reviewing mass disasters to date, the principal difficulties have not changed: (1) large numbers of humans fragmented, co-mingled, and burned remains; (2) difficulty in determining who was involved in the disaster; (3) acquisition of useful medical and dental records and radiographs; (4) legal, jurisdictional, organisational, and political issues; (5) internal and external documentation and communication problems; (6) application of universal human forensic identification codes. Forensic dentistry plays a major role in victim identification. DNA and dental identification of human remains depends on sufficient availability of ante mortem information, existence of sufficient post mortem material and a comparison or match between ante and post mortem details. Forensic odontology is a specialty with a specific training, and cannot simply be carried out by dentists without such training. Strategies for developing an international forensic odontology capacity and resources are needed for the management of dead bodies following a mass disaster, together with universal guidelines and codes. To this end, Interpol's forms have proved to be a good starting point to meet these requirements. PMID:17849685

  15. THE ROLE OF FORENSIC DENTIST FOLLOWING MASS DISASTER

    PubMed Central

    Kolude, B.; Adeyemi, B.F.; Taiwo, J.O.; Sigbeku, O.F.; Eze, U.O.

    2010-01-01

    This review article focuses on mass disaster situations that may arise from natural or manmade circumstances and the significant role of forensic dental personnel in human identification following such occurrences. The various forensic dental modalities of identification that include matching techniques, postmortem profiling, genetic fingerprinting, dental fossil assessment and dental biometrics with digital subtraction were considered. The varying extent of use of forensic dental techniques and the resulting positive impact on human identification were considered. The importance of preparation by way of special training for forensic dental personnel, mock disaster rehearsal, and use of modern day technology was stressed. The need for international standardization of identification through the use of Interpol Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) for ms was further emphasized. Recommendations for improved human identification in Nigerian situation include reform of the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA), incorporation of dental care in primary health care to facilitate proper ante mortem database of the populace and commencement of identification at site of disaster. PMID:25161478

  16. Forensic aspects of the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Disaster.

    PubMed

    Cordner, Stephen M; Woodford, Noel; Bassed, Richard

    2011-02-25

    The 2009 Victorian Bushfires Disaster started on a record hot day in February 2009 and resulted in over 300 separate fires with a death toll of 173 and over 400 presentations to hospital emergency departments. This occurred a little over a week after a heat wave in which over 400 people were thought to have died prematurely in southeastern Australia. The Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine in collaboration with the police force and the State Coroner's Office and over 100 colleagues from all over Australia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Japan implemented a DVI process based on Interpol guidelines to identify the deceased persons. CT scanning was conducted on all remains collected and played a pivotal role in the identification processes in conjunction with experts in pathology, anthropology, forensic odontology and molecular biology. This paper outlines the scale of the disaster and the work, from a forensic medical perspective, to identify the deceased. PMID:20832958

  17. Development of the Australian Society of Forensic Odontology disaster victim identification forensic odontology guide.

    PubMed

    Taylor, J

    2009-12-01

    The need for documented procedures and protocols are important in every specialist group to ensure a consistent service to the community. They provide guidance to members of the specialist group about responsibilities and appropriate practices, and confidence to the community that the services are of the highest possible standard. In a Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) incident, by enabling the process to be audited, they also serve to ensure that identifications are reliable. Following the Bali Bombings of 2002 and the 2004 Asian Tsunami the Australian Society of Forensic Odontology recognised the need for a practice guide to assist the management of their members in DVI incidents. 31 members of the Australian Society of Forensic Odontology participated in the development of a guideline document for Disaster Victim Identification using a Delphi based model. The advantage of using the iterative Delphi process is that it encouraged participants to think about the processes used in the forensic odontology aspects of a DVI incident and their expectations of a guiding document. The document developed as a result of this project is comprehensive in coverage and places the Australian Society of Forensic Odontology at the vanguard of professionalism in the forensic odontology and DVI community. PMID:22785098

  18. The USS Iowa disaster: success of the forensic dental team.

    PubMed

    Brannon, Robert B; Morlang, William M

    2004-09-01

    The authors record the contributions of dentistry to the identification of the crew members who were in one of the most significant peacetime military accidents in U.S. Navy history-the April 1989 explosion in a gun turret on the battleship USS Iowa and the deaths of 47 U.S. Navy personnel. Dental identification was the primary means of identification for most because a very high percentage of the bodies were burned or fragmented. The dental-identification team's success was a direct result of its preparedness, its use of dental personnel with mass-disaster experience, and the overall excellent quality of the antemortem dental records. The dental-identification team's successful involvement in the USS Iowa tragedy was considered a model for success and therefore was instrumental in contributing to the development of the American Board of Forensic Odontology "Guidelines for the Development of a Disaster Dental Identification Team." PMID:15461111

  19. Forensic Analysis of Cathinones.

    PubMed

    Gautam, L; Shanmuganathan, A; Cole, M D

    2013-03-01

    In the past decade there has been a significant increase in the popularity of synthetic cathinones in the illegal drug market. They have been easily available from Internet-based vendors as well as at "head shops" and "smart shops". The recent prominence of synthetic cathinones can be attributed to their stimulatory properties similar to those of amphetamines. This paper provides a review on the current popular cathinone derivatives, their history and prevalence in the illegal drug market, legislation of these drugs in various countries, pharmacology, toxicology, and metabolism studies, analysis of toxicology samples (blood, urine, and hair) and criminalistic samples (seized, purchased via the Internet, and synthesized). From the reviewed literature, it is concluded that the products sold as "legal highs" do not only contain cathinone but also cathinone derivatives, and adulterants such as caffeine, lidocaine, and inorganic materials. Full toxicity data is currently unavailable for this drug class and hence more research is required with regard to their analysis and metabolism. Moreover, clandestine chemists are constantly synthesizing new derivatives and hence forensic chemists often need to synthesize and characterize these drugs to confirm the identity of the seized samples. This is expensive as well as time-consuming. Therefore, there is a need for national and international collaboration among forensic chemists to overcome this difficulty. PMID:26226850

  20. Forensic analysis of biodiesel.

    PubMed

    Goodman, Michael R; Kaley, Elizabeth A; Finney, Eric E

    2016-06-01

    The analysis of four different biodiesel blends, as well as homemade biodiesel prepared from vegetable oil, has been performed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The identification of methyl esters within the biodiesel along with any background components is made possible by recognizing their mass spectral fragmentation patterns. These fuels were subjected to typical fire scene environments, specifically weathering and microbial degradation, to investigate how these environments affect the analysis. A matrix study was also performed on wood, carpet, and clothing in order to identify any interferences from these substrates. The data obtained herein will provide the forensic science community with the data needed to help recognize these increasingly common ignitable liquids. PMID:27060442

  1. Encoded evidence: DNA in forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Jobling, Mark A; Gill, Peter

    2004-10-01

    Sherlock Holmes said "it has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important", but never imagined that such a little thing, the DNA molecule, could become perhaps the most powerful single tool in the multifaceted fight against crime. Twenty years after the development of DNA fingerprinting, forensic DNA analysis is key to the conviction or exoneration of suspects and the identification of victims of crimes, accidents and disasters, driving the development of innovative methods in molecular genetics, statistics and the use of massive intelligence databases. PMID:15510165

  2. NUCLEAR FORENSICS ANALYSIS CENTER FORENSIC ANALYSIS TO DATA INTERPRETATION

    SciTech Connect

    Nichols, T.

    2011-02-07

    The Nuclear Forensics Analysis Center (NFAC) is part of Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) and is one of only two USG National Laboratories accredited to perform nuclear forensic analyses to the requirements of ISO 17025. SRNL NFAC is capable of analyzing nuclear and radiological samples from bulk material to ultra-trace samples. NFAC provides analytical support to the FBI's Radiological Evidence Examination Facility (REEF), which is located within SRNL. REEF gives the FBI the capability to perform traditional forensics on material that is radiological and/or is contaminated. SRNL is engaged in research and development efforts to improve the USG technical nuclear forensics capabilities. Research includes improving predictive signatures and developing a database containing comparative samples.

  3. Particle Analysis in Forensic Science.

    PubMed

    Bisbing, R E; Schneck, W M

    2006-07-01

    Microscopic trace evidence includes particles from many sources such as biologicals, soil, building materials, metals, explosives, gunshot residues, and cosmetics. The particles are identified by morphological analysis, microscopy, and chemical analysis. Their identity is confirmed by comparison with reference materials or other comparison samples. The probative value of particles of forensic interest depends on their nature and the circumstances of their presence. PMID:26247226

  4. A brief history of forensic odontology and disaster victim identification practices in Australia.

    PubMed

    Taylor, J

    2009-12-01

    Today we consider forensic odontology to be a specialised and reliable method of identification of the deceased, particularly in multiple fatality incidents. While this reputation has been gained from the application of forensic odontology in both single identification and disaster situations over a number of years, the professional nature of the discipline and its practices have evolved only recently. This paper summarises some of early uses of forensic odontology internationally and in Australia and discusses the development of both forensic odontology and Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) practices in each of the states and territories of Australia. The earliest accounts of the use of forensic odontology in Australia date to the 1920's and 30's, and were characterised by inexperienced practitioners and little procedural formality. An organised and semi-formal service commenced in most states during the 1960's although its use by police forces was spasmodic. Today the service provided by qualified and experienced forensic odontologists is highly professional and regularly utilised by police and coronial services. The development of DVI Practices in Australia began following the crash of a Vickers Viscount aircraft into Botany Bay in 1961 and, as with practices internationally, have evolved into an equally professional and reliable specialist discipline of policing in which forensic odontology plays a significant part. PMID:22785099

  5. Forensic Analyses on A Compound Disaster and Its Impacts Following the 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Wei

    2014-05-01

    The 7.9 Mw Wenchuan Earthquake on May 12 in 2008 was one of the most devastating natural disasters in the 21st century and caused massive damages and vast disruptions in Western China. Our analysis takes a special look into the Wolong National Nature Reserve bear the epicenter, where long-term quantitative and qualitative data on socioeconomic and natural conditions have been collected from late 1990s to 2013. The Reserve is known internationally as the hometown of Giant Pandas and a tourism hotspot, where around 5000 ethnic minorities (e.g., Tibetan, Qiang) also reside. While the Reserve suffered lower level of immediate damages and mortalities relative to several nearby areas, the reconstruction and recovery process in the Reserve have been much slower, mainly due to recurrent flush floods, landslides, and debris flow that took place in every summer since 2008. The suddenly increased frequency and intensity of these secondary natural disasters has led to the formation of compound disaster in the Reserve. The reconstruction of the only road to outside will not be completed till at least 2016, and the livelihoods of the local communities are severely compromised, which has induced a resurrection of illegal logging and hunting in the Reserve. Taking advantage of our longitudinal survey data of~200 local households (on their income, expenditure, energy use, land use behaviors, and perceptions and attitudes toward disasters and polices) over a nine-year period before as well as one and several years after the earthquake and also our in-depth knowledge on the ecology and the institutional arrangements in the area, we conducted, in an interdisciplinary and comprehensive manner, a critical cause analysis to investigate the non-human and human drivers behind the predicament that the Reserve is facing currently. We identified a series of proximate and root causes at various spatial and temporal scales and institutional levels. The results were exchanged with various local stakeholders and their feedback was collected. Our case contribute to the expanding examples of forensic disaster investigations and prove that such studies can provide important insights into how fewer people may be adversely impacted and wiser investments and choices may be made when comparable events take place somewhere else.

  6. Forensic Analysis of Compromised Computers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wolfe, Thomas

    2004-01-01

    Directory Tree Analysis File Generator is a Practical Extraction and Reporting Language (PERL) script that simplifies and automates the collection of information for forensic analysis of compromised computer systems. During such an analysis, it is sometimes necessary to collect and analyze information about files on a specific directory tree. Directory Tree Analysis File Generator collects information of this type (except information about directories) and writes it to a text file. In particular, the script asks the user for the root of the directory tree to be processed, the name of the output file, and the number of subtree levels to process. The script then processes the directory tree and puts out the aforementioned text file. The format of the text file is designed to enable the submission of the file as input to a spreadsheet program, wherein the forensic analysis is performed. The analysis usually consists of sorting files and examination of such characteristics of files as ownership, time of creation, and time of most recent access, all of which characteristics are among the data included in the text file.

  7. The Helderberg air disaster--forensic odontological investigations.

    PubMed

    Ligthelm, A J

    1994-06-01

    A Boeing 747-224B Combi of the South African Airways, the "Helderberg", crashed into the sea near Mauritius on 28 November 1987. All 159 people on board died and dental tissues were present in only eight of the 15 lots of human remains recovered. Ante-mortem dental records were collected by a team in Johannesburg while the post-mortem examinations were conducted in Mauritius. The special circumstances surrounding an accident at sea resulted in the low number of bodies available for identification procedures. Of the eight remains which included dental tissues, five were identified by means of simple dental restorations, advanced dentistry, anatomical features of teeth and stages of development of teeth. One of the victims was identified by a process of exclusion and radiographic evidence played a decisive role in the identification process. (J Forensic Odontostomatol 1994; 12: 15-18) The variety of record-keeping styles and abbreviations used in different countries posed a major problem during the process and it is concluded that international standardization in record-keeping requires urgent attention. PMID:9227085

  8. VALIDATION GUIDELINES FOR LABORATORIES PERFORMING FORENSIC ANALYSIS OF CHEMICAL TERRORISM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Scientific Working Group on Forensic Analysis of Chemical Terrorism (SWGFACT) has developed the following guidelines for laboratories engaged in the forensic analysis of chemical evidence associated with terrorism. This document provides a baseline framework and guidance for...

  9. Forensic archaeology and anthropology : An Australian perspective.

    PubMed

    Oakley, Kate

    2005-09-01

    Forensic archaeology is an extremely powerful investigative discipline and, in combination with forensic anthropology, can provide a wealth of evidentiary information to police investigators and the forensic community. The re-emergence of forensic archaeology and anthropology within Australia relies on its diversification and cooperation with established forensic medical organizations, law enforcement forensic service divisions, and national forensic boards. This presents a unique opportunity to develop a new multidisciplinary approach to forensic archaeology/anthropology within Australia as we hold a unique set of environmental, social, and cultural conditions that diverge from overseas models and require different methodological approaches. In the current world political climate, more forensic techniques are being applied at scenes of mass disasters, genocide, and terrorism. This provides Australian forensic archaeology/anthropology with a unique opportunity to develop multidisciplinary models with contributions from psychological profiling, ballistics, sociopolitics, cultural anthropology, mortuary technicians, post-blast analysis, fire analysis, and other disciplines from the world of forensic science. PMID:25870041

  10. Molecular forensic science analysis of nuclear materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reilly, Dallas David

    Concerns over the proliferation and instances of nuclear material in the environment have increased interest in the expansion of nuclear forensics analysis and attribution programs. A new related field, molecular forensic science (MFS) has helped meet this expansion by applying common scientific analyses to nuclear forensics scenarios. In this work, MFS was applied to three scenarios related to nuclear forensics analysis. In the first, uranium dioxide was synthesized and aged at four sets of static environmental conditions and studied for changes in chemical speciation. The second highlighted the importance of bulk versus particle characterizations by analyzing a heterogeneous industrially prepared sample with similar techniques. In the third, mixed uranium/plutonium hot particles were collected from the McGuire Air Force Base BOMARC Site and analyzed for chemical speciation and elemental surface composition. This work has identified new signatures and has indicated unexpected chemical behavior under various conditions. These findings have lead to an expansion of basic actinide understanding, proof of MFS as a tool for nuclear forensic science, and new areas for expansion in these fields.

  11. Forensic Analysis of BIOS Chips

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gershteyn, Pavel; Davis, Mark; Shenoi, Sujeet

    Data can be hidden in BIOS chips without hindering computer performance. This feature has been exploited by virus writers and computer game enthusiasts. Unused BIOS storage can also be used by criminals, terrorists and intelligence agents to conceal secrets. However, BIOS chips are largely ignored in digital forensic investigations. Few techniques exist for imaging BIOS chips and no tools are available specifically for analyzing BIOS data.

  12. [Forensic DNA analysis--past and future].

    PubMed

    Fukushima, H

    1999-11-01

    Since the introduction of DNA polymorphism analysis techniques to forensic science, forensic identification research has made radical, astonishing progress at a rate that has already rendered the initial methodologies introduced fifteen years ago obsolete. DNA extraction now can be quickly and efficiently performed by various kinds of commercially available kits. The advent of PCR has enabled the use of relatively crude and minute DNA as amplification templates while many kinds of new detection methods for analyzing the amplified products have also been developed. Although many minisatellites such as MCT118, YNZ22, COL2A1, and ApoB were highlighted at the beginning of 1980s, none of these loci, with the exception of MCT118, have proved useful for forensic DNA application due to their low amplification efficiency. On the other hand, STR loci containing four base pair repeat sequences have been used routinely for human identification since the mid-1990s. In the near future, the highly efficient STR should be selected as a consensus core marker in Japan. STR systems located on the Y chromosome are widely used in forensic science for the identification of male individuals. These systems have a special significance in forensic science cases where mixtures of male and female DNA are analyzed, as happens in cases of rape or other sexual crimes. The characteristics of high copy number, maternal inheritance, and high degree of sequence variability make mtDNA a powerful tool for forensic identification. Most of the variations in mtDNA among individuals are found within the displacement loop (D-loop). In all population groups, mtDNA sequences can be useful for discriminating among unrelated individuals. Now it is necessary to get as much as possible individual genetic information as quickly as possible in order to enable individual identification. We will create a new era in which forensic identification can be performed using microarray technology. PMID:10723959

  13. Present and foreseeable future of metabolomics in forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Castillo-Peinado, L S; Luque de Castro, M D

    2016-06-21

    The revulsive publications during the last years on the precariousness of forensic sciences worldwide have promoted the move of major steps towards improvement of this science. One of the steps (viz. a higher involvement of metabolomics in the new era of forensic analysis) deserves to be discussed under different angles. Thus, the characteristics of metabolomics that make it a useful tool in forensic analysis, the aspects in which this omics is so far implicit, but not mentioned in forensic analyses, and how typical forensic parameters such as the post-mortem interval or fingerprints take benefits from metabolomics are critically discussed in this review. The way in which the metabolomics-forensic binomial succeeds when either conventional or less frequent samples are used is highlighted here. Finally, the pillars that should support future developments involving metabolomics and forensic analysis, and the research required for a fruitful in-depth involvement of metabolomics in forensic analysis are critically discussed. PMID:27188312

  14. Forensic odontology as a victim identification tool in mass disasters: A feasibility study in the Indian scenario

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Shamindra; Sharma, Vandana; Gupta, Vineeta; Vij, Hitesh; Vij, Ruchieka; Prabhat, Kanika

    2014-01-01

    Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the awareness of practicing dentists about the subject of forensic odontology and to assess their willingness to maintain and share patient records. Materials and Methods: A blind questionnaire survey was carried out among 100 randomly selected practicing dentists in district Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh. Results: Most of the dentists interviewed were familiar with the subject of forensic odontology and its relation to dentistry, despite forensic dentistry having been newly introduced since 2007 into the undergraduate dental curriculum in India. However, dental records are maintained by only a few dentists, and only a very small percentage of them reported to have shared records, which may have helped in the identification of victims in a mass disaster. Conclusion: The result of our survey concluded that more awareness needs to be developed among practicing dentists regarding maintaining and sharing patient records for forensic odontology to succeed as a victim identification tool. PMID:24695834

  15. A forensic application of PIXE analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kravchenko, I. I.; Dunnam, F. E.; Van Rinsvelt, H. A.; Warren, M. W.; Falsetti, A. B.

    2001-07-01

    PIXE measurements were performed on various calcareous materials including identified bone residues, human cremains, and samples of disputed origin. In a forensic application, the elemental analysis suggests that the origin of a sample suspectly classified as human cremains can tentatively be identified as a mixture of sandy soil and dolomitic limestone.

  16. Spectroscopic analysis of bones for forensic studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tofanelli, Mirko; Pardini, Lorenzo; Borrini, Matteo; Bartoli, Fulvio; Bacci, Alessandra; D'Ulivo, Alessandro; Pitzalis, Emanuela; Mascherpa, Marco Carlo; Legnaioli, Stefano; Lorenzetti, Giulia; Pagnotta, Stefano; de Holanda Cavalcanti, Gildo; Lezzerini, Marco; Palleschi, Vincenzo

    2014-09-01

    The elemental analysis of human bones can give information about the dietary habits of the deceased, especially in the last years of their lives, which can be useful for forensic studies. The most important requirement that must be satisfied for this kind of analysis is that the concentrations of analyzed elements are the same as ante mortem. In this work, a set of bones was analyzed using Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) and validated using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES), in order to compare those two techniques and to investigate the effect of possible alterations in the elemental concentrations' proportion resulting from the treatment usually applied for preparing the bones for traditional forensic analysis. The possibility that elemental concentrations' changes would occur after accidental or intentional burning of the bones was also studied.

  17. Statistical Tools for Forensic Analysis of Toolmarks

    SciTech Connect

    David Baldwin; Max Morris; Stan Bajic; Zhigang Zhou; James Kreiser

    2004-04-22

    Recovery and comparison of toolmarks, footprint impressions, and fractured surfaces connected to a crime scene are of great importance in forensic science. The purpose of this project is to provide statistical tools for the validation of the proposition that particular manufacturing processes produce marks on the work-product (or tool) that are substantially different from tool to tool. The approach to validation involves the collection of digital images of toolmarks produced by various tool manufacturing methods on produced work-products and the development of statistical methods for data reduction and analysis of the images. The developed statistical methods provide a means to objectively calculate a ''degree of association'' between matches of similarly produced toolmarks. The basis for statistical method development relies on ''discriminating criteria'' that examiners use to identify features and spatial relationships in their analysis of forensic samples. The developed data reduction algorithms utilize the same rules used by examiners for classification and association of toolmarks.

  18. Careers in Forensics: Analysis, Evidence, and Law

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Torpey, Elka Maria

    2009-01-01

    In legal proceedings, a case is only as strong as its evidence. And whether that evidence is strong depends, in large part, on the work of forensic specialists. The field of forensics is broad and involves many kinds of workers. Some of them are involved in crimesolving. Others, such as forensic social workers or forensic economists, help to…

  19. The contribution of forensic science to crime analysis and investigation: forensic intelligence.

    PubMed

    Ribaux, Olivier; Walsh, Simon J; Margot, Pierre

    2006-01-27

    The debate in forensic science concentrates on issues such as standardisation, accreditation and de-contextualisation, in a legal and economical context, in order to ensure the scientific objectivity and efficiency that must guide the process of collecting, analysing, interpreting and reporting forensic evidence. At the same time, it is recognised that forensic case data is still poorly integrated into the investigation and the crime analysis process, despite evidence of its great potential in various situations and studies. A change of attitude is needed in order to accept an extended role for forensic science that goes beyond the production of evidence for the court. To stimulate and guide this development, a long-term intensive modelling activity of the investigative and crime analysis process that crosses the boundaries of different disciplines has been initiated. A framework that fully integrates forensic case data shows through examples the capital accumulated that may be put to use systematically. PMID:16099615

  20. Information Gap Analysis: near real-time evaluation of disaster response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girard, Trevor

    2014-05-01

    Disasters, such as major storm events or earthquakes, trigger an immediate response by the disaster management system of the nation in question. The quality of this response is a large factor in its ability to limit the impacts on the local population. Improving the quality of disaster response therefore reduces disaster impacts. Studying past disasters is a valuable exercise to understand what went wrong, identify measures which could have mitigated these issues, and make recommendations to improve future disaster planning and response. While such ex post evaluations can lead to improvements in the disaster management system, there are limitations. The main limitation that has influenced this research is that ex post evaluations do not have the ability to inform the disaster response being assessed for the obvious reason that they are carried out long after the response phase is over. The result is that lessons learned can only be applied to future disasters. In the field of humanitarian relief, this limitation has led to the development of real time evaluations. The key aspect of real time humanitarian evaluations is that they are completed while the operation is still underway. This results in findings being delivered at a time when they can still make a difference to the humanitarian response. Applying such an approach to the immediate disaster response phase requires an even shorter time-frame, as well as a shift in focus from international actors to the nation in question's government. As such, a pilot study was started and methodology developed, to analyze disaster response in near real-time. The analysis uses the information provided by the disaster management system within the first 0 - 5 days of the response. The data is collected from publicly available sources such as ReliefWeb and sorted under various categories which represent each aspect of disaster response. This process was carried out for 12 disasters. The quantity and timeliness of information produced under each category was then compared to establish best practices. Thus, the information produced by a disaster management system following a major disaster can be compared to these best practices within days of the disaster. The resulting "information gap analysis" can help identify areas of the response that may need to be improved and raise questions as to why critical information is lacking or delayed. This information gap analysis therefore complements ex post evaluations and can help lead to improvements in the immediate response and subsequently reduce disaster impacts on the population. The methodology has already been applied in the Center for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology's (CEDIM) Forensic Disaster Analysis (FDA) activities following tropical cyclone Phailin in India, and the Bohol Earthquake and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

  1. Models for regionalizing economic data and their applications within the scope of forensic disaster analyses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Hanns-Maximilian; Wiens, rer. pol. Marcus, , Dr.; Schultmann, rer. pol. Frank, Prof. _., Dr.

    2015-04-01

    The impact of natural hazards on the economic system can be observed in many different regions all over the world. Once the local economic structure is hit by an event direct costs instantly occur. However, the disturbance on a local level (e.g. parts of city or industries along a river bank) might also cause monetary damages in other, indirectly affected sectors. If the impact of an event is strong, these damages are likely to cascade and spread even on an international scale (e.g. the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull and its impact on the automotive sector in Europe). In order to determine these special impacts, one has to gain insights into the directly hit economic structure before being able to calculate these side effects. Especially, regarding the development of a model used for near real-time forensic disaster analyses any simulation needs to be based on data that is rapidly available or easily to be computed. Therefore, we investigated commonly used or recently discussed methodologies for regionalizing economic data. Surprisingly, even for German federal states there is no official input-output data available that can be used, although it might provide detailed figures concerning economic interrelations between different industry sectors. In the case of highly developed countries, such as Germany, we focus on models for regionalizing nationwide input-output table which is usually available at the national statistical offices. However, when it comes to developing countries (e.g. South-East Asia) the data quality and availability is usually much poorer. In this case, other sources need to be found for the proper assessment of regional economic performance. We developed an indicator-based model that can fill this gap because of its flexibility regarding the level of aggregation and the composability of different input parameters. Our poster presentation brings up a literature review and a summary on potential models that seem to be useful for this specific task. Moreover, some sample data from our own applications for developed and developing countries are shown. The use of the different methodologies for the calculation of indirect losses in the field of forensic disaster analyses is also to be discussed. Finally, we give an outlook on the further utilization of these models aiming for the simulation of indirect losses.

  2. Gait analysis in forensic medicine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Larsen, Peter K.; Simonsen, Erik B.; Lynnerup, Niels

    2007-01-01

    We have combined the basic human ability to recognize other individuals with functional anatomical and biomechanical knowledge, in order to analyze the gait of perpetrators as recorded on surveillance video. The perpetrators are then compared with similar analyses of suspects. At present we give a statement to the police as to whether the perpetrator has a characteristic gait pattern compared to normal gait, and if a suspect has a comparable gait pattern. We have found agreements such as: limping, varus instability in the knee at heel strike, larger lateral flexion of the spinal column to one side than the other, inverted ankle during stance, pronounced sagittal head-movements, and marked head-shoulder posture. Based on these characteristic features, we state whether suspect and perpetrator could have the same identity but it is not possible to positively identify the perpetrator. Nevertheless, we have been involved in several cases where the court has found that this type of gait analysis, especially combined with photogrammetry, was a valuable tool. The primary requisites are surveillance cameras recording with sufficient frequency, ideally about 15 Hz, which are positioned in frontal and preferably also in profile view.

  3. Photogrammetry Tool for Forensic Analysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lane, John

    2012-01-01

    A system allows crime scene and accident scene investigators the ability to acquire visual scene data using cameras for processing at a later time. This system uses a COTS digital camera, a photogrammetry calibration cube, and 3D photogrammetry processing software. In a previous instrument developed by NASA, the laser scaling device made use of parallel laser beams to provide a photogrammetry solution in 2D. This device and associated software work well under certain conditions. In order to make use of a full 3D photogrammetry system, a different approach was needed. When using multiple cubes, whose locations relative to each other are unknown, a procedure that would merge the data from each cube would be as follows: 1. One marks a reference point on cube 1, then marks points on cube 2 as unknowns. This locates cube 2 in cube 1 s coordinate system. 2. One marks reference points on cube 2, then marks points on cube 1 as unknowns. This locates cube 1 in cube 2 s coordinate system. 3. This procedure is continued for all combinations of cubes. 4. The coordinate of all of the found coordinate systems is then merged into a single global coordinate system. In order to achieve maximum accuracy, measurements are done in one of two ways, depending on scale: when measuring the size of objects, the coordinate system corresponding to the nearest cube is used, or when measuring the location of objects relative to a global coordinate system, a merged coordinate system is used. Presently, traffic accident analysis is time-consuming and not very accurate. Using cubes with differential GPS would give absolute positions of cubes in the accident area, so that individual cubes would provide local photogrammetry calibration to objects near a cube.

  4. Forensic analysis of dyed textile fibers.

    PubMed

    Goodpaster, John V; Liszewski, Elisa A

    2009-08-01

    Textile fibers are a key form of trace evidence, and the ability to reliably associate or discriminate them is crucial for forensic scientists worldwide. While microscopic and instrumental analysis can be used to determine the composition of the fiber itself, additional specificity is gained by examining fiber color. This is particularly important when the bulk composition of the fiber is relatively uninformative, as it is with cotton, wool, or other natural fibers. Such analyses pose several problems, including extremely small sample sizes, the desire for nondestructive techniques, and the vast complexity of modern dye compositions. This review will focus on more recent methods for comparing fiber color by using chromatography, spectroscopy, and mass spectrometry. The increasing use of multivariate statistics and other data analysis techniques for the differentiation of spectra from dyed fibers will also be discussed. PMID:19543886

  5. Forensic Learning Disability Nursing Role Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, Tom; Phipps, Dianne; Melling, Kat

    2011-01-01

    This article reports on a study carried out on the role constructs of forensic and nonforensic Learning Disability Nursing in relation to six binary themes. The aims were to identify if there were differences in perceptions of forensic learning disability nurses and nonforensic learning disability nurses in relation to the six binary themes of the

  6. Forensic Learning Disability Nursing Role Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, Tom; Phipps, Dianne; Melling, Kat

    2011-01-01

    This article reports on a study carried out on the role constructs of forensic and nonforensic Learning Disability Nursing in relation to six binary themes. The aims were to identify if there were differences in perceptions of forensic learning disability nurses and nonforensic learning disability nurses in relation to the six binary themes of the…

  7. Hyperspectral imaging for non-contact analysis of forensic traces.

    PubMed

    Edelman, G J; Gaston, E; van Leeuwen, T G; Cullen, P J; Aalders, M C G

    2012-11-30

    Hyperspectral imaging (HSI) integrates conventional imaging and spectroscopy, to obtain both spatial and spectral information from a specimen. This technique enables investigators to analyze the chemical composition of traces and simultaneously visualize their spatial distribution. HSI offers significant potential for the detection, visualization, identification and age estimation of forensic traces. The rapid, non-destructive and non-contact features of HSI mark its suitability as an analytical tool for forensic science. This paper provides an overview of the principles, instrumentation and analytical techniques involved in hyperspectral imaging. We describe recent advances in HSI technology motivating forensic science applications, e.g. the development of portable and fast image acquisition systems. Reported forensic science applications are reviewed. Challenges are addressed, such as the analysis of traces on backgrounds encountered in casework, concluded by a summary of possible future applications. PMID:23088824

  8. DNA fingerprinting in forensics: past, present, future

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    DNA fingerprinting, one of the great discoveries of the late 20th century, has revolutionized forensic investigations. This review briefly recapitulates 30 years of progress in forensic DNA analysis which helps to convict criminals, exonerate the wrongly accused, and identify victims of crime, disasters, and war. Current standard methods based on short tandem repeats (STRs) as well as lineage markers (Y chromosome, mitochondrial DNA) are covered and applications are illustrated by casework examples. Benefits and risks of expanding forensic DNA databases are discussed and we ask what the future holds for forensic DNA fingerprinting. PMID:24245688

  9. QUALITY ASSURANCE GUIDELINES FOR LABORATORIES PERFORMING FORENSIC ANALYSIS OF CHEMICAL TERRORISM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Scientific Working Group on Forensic Analysis of Chemical Terrorism (SWGFACT) has developed the following quality assurance guidelines to provide laboratories engaged in forensic analysis of chemical evidence associated with terrorism a framework to implement a quality assura...

  10. [Possibilities and limitations of forensic bloodstain pattern analysis].

    PubMed

    Kunz, Sebastian Niko; Klawonn, Tina; Grove, Christina

    2014-09-01

    Forensic bloodstain pattern analysis includes the detection, shape analysis, classification and interpretation of relevant traces of blood at a crime scene with the aim of reconstructing the sequences of the events that occurred. Mathematical calculation of impact and cast-off patterns are the center of the analytical reconstruction, when predicting the position of the source of blood stain at the moment of impact. Taking into consideration the limits of this method, it is possible to verify reconstructions of criminal acts and reconstruct a possible sequence of events that occurred. The present article is intended to give a brief introduction to various aspects of the forensic bloodstain pattern analysis as well as to point out the application possibilities and limitations of this forensic subdiscipline. PMID:25201096

  11. Analysis of Forensic Casework Utilizing Infrared Spectroscopic Imaging.

    PubMed

    Lanzarotta, Adam

    2016-01-01

    A search of the current scientific literature yields a limited number of studies that describe the use of Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopic imaging for the analysis of forensic casework, which is likely due to the fact that these instruments are fairly new commodities to the field of analytical chemistry and are therefore not yet commonplace in forensic laboratories. This report describes recent forensic case studies that have used the technique for determining the composition of a wide variety of multi-component sample types, including animal tissue sections for toxic inclusions, drugs/dietary supplements, an antibiotic with an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) present as several different salt forms, an adulterated bulk API, unknown trace powders for illicit drugs and an ophthalmic solution suspected of being adulterated with bleach. PMID:26927101

  12. Analysis of Forensic Casework Utilizing Infrared Spectroscopic Imaging †

    PubMed Central

    Lanzarotta, Adam

    2016-01-01

    A search of the current scientific literature yields a limited number of studies that describe the use of Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopic imaging for the analysis of forensic casework, which is likely due to the fact that these instruments are fairly new commodities to the field of analytical chemistry and are therefore not yet commonplace in forensic laboratories. This report describes recent forensic case studies that have used the technique for determining the composition of a wide variety of multi-component sample types, including animal tissue sections for toxic inclusions, drugs/dietary supplements, an antibiotic with an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) present as several different salt forms, an adulterated bulk API, unknown trace powders for illicit drugs and an ophthalmic solution suspected of being adulterated with bleach. PMID:26927101

  13. A Graph Oriented Approach for Network Forensic Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Wei

    2010-01-01

    Network forensic analysis is a process that analyzes intrusion evidence captured from networked environment to identify suspicious entities and stepwise actions in an attack scenario. Unfortunately, the overwhelming amount and low quality of output from security sensors make it difficult for analysts to obtain a succinct high-level view of complex…

  14. A Graph Oriented Approach for Network Forensic Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Wei

    2010-01-01

    Network forensic analysis is a process that analyzes intrusion evidence captured from networked environment to identify suspicious entities and stepwise actions in an attack scenario. Unfortunately, the overwhelming amount and low quality of output from security sensors make it difficult for analysts to obtain a succinct high-level view of complex

  15. Forensic document analysis using scanning microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaffer, Douglas K.

    2009-05-01

    The authentication and identification of the source of a printed document(s) can be important in forensic investigations involving a wide range of fraudulent materials, including counterfeit currency, travel and identity documents, business and personal checks, money orders, prescription labels, travelers checks, medical records, financial documents and threatening correspondence. The physical and chemical characterization of document materials - including paper, writing inks and printed media - is becoming increasingly relevant for law enforcement agencies, with the availability of a wide variety of sophisticated commercial printers and copiers which are capable of producing fraudulent documents of extremely high print quality, rendering these difficult to distinguish from genuine documents. This paper describes various applications and analytical methodologies using scanning electron miscoscopy/energy dispersive (x-ray) spectroscopy (SEM/EDS) and related technologies for the characterization of fraudulent documents, and illustrates how their morphological and chemical profiles can be compared to (1) authenticate and (2) link forensic documents with a common source(s) in their production history.

  16. My-Forensic-Loci-queries (MyFLq) framework for analysis of forensic STR data generated by massive parallel sequencing.

    PubMed

    Van Neste, Christophe; Vandewoestyne, Mado; Van Criekinge, Wim; Deforce, Dieter; Van Nieuwerburgh, Filip

    2014-03-01

    Forensic scientists are currently investigating how to transition from capillary electrophoresis (CE) to massive parallel sequencing (MPS) for analysis of forensic DNA profiles. MPS offers several advantages over CE such as virtually unlimited multiplexy of loci, combining both short tandem repeat (STR) and single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) loci, small amplicons without constraints of size separation, more discrimination power, deep mixture resolution and sample multiplexing. We present our bioinformatic framework My-Forensic-Loci-queries (MyFLq) for analysis of MPS forensic data. For allele calling, the framework uses a MySQL reference allele database with automatically determined regions of interest (ROIs) by a generic maximal flanking algorithm which makes it possible to use any STR or SNP forensic locus. Python scripts were designed to automatically make allele calls starting from raw MPS data. We also present a method to assess the usefulness and overall performance of a forensic locus with respect to MPS, as well as methods to estimate whether an unknown allele, which sequence is not present in the MySQL database, is in fact a new allele or a sequencing error. The MyFLq framework was applied to an Illumina MiSeq dataset of a forensic Illumina amplicon library, generated from multilocus STR polymerase chain reaction (PCR) on both single contributor samples and multiple person DNA mixtures. Although the multilocus PCR was not yet optimized for MPS in terms of amplicon length or locus selection, the results show excellent results for most loci. The results show a high signal-to-noise ratio, correct allele calls, and a low limit of detection for minor DNA contributors in mixed DNA samples. Technically, forensic MPS affords great promise for routine implementation in forensic genomics. The method is also applicable to adjacent disciplines such as molecular autopsy in legal medicine and in mitochondrial DNA research. PMID:24528572

  17. State of the art in bile analysis in forensic toxicology.

    PubMed

    Bévalot, F; Cartiser, N; Bottinelli, C; Guitton, J; Fanton, L

    2016-02-01

    In forensic toxicology, alternative matrices to blood are useful in case of limited, unavailable or unusable blood sample, suspected postmortem redistribution or long drug intake-to-sampling interval. The present article provides an update on the state of knowledge for the use of bile in forensic toxicology, through a review of the Medline literature from 1970 to May 2015. Bile physiology and technical aspects of analysis (sampling, storage, sample preparation and analytical methods) are reported, to highlight specificities and consequences from an analytical and interpretative point of view. A table summarizes cause of death and quantification in bile and blood of 133 compounds from more than 200 case reports, providing a useful tool for forensic physicians and toxicologists involved in interpreting bile analysis. Qualitative and quantitative interpretation is discussed. As bile/blood concentration ratios are high for numerous molecules or metabolites, bile is a matrix of choice for screening when blood concentrations are low or non-detectable: e.g., cases of weak exposure or long intake-to-death interval. Quantitative applications have been little investigated, but small molecules with low bile/blood concentration ratios seem to be good candidates for quantitative bile-based interpretation. Further experimental data on the mechanism and properties of biliary extraction of xenobiotics of forensic interest are required to improve quantitative interpretation. PMID:26773224

  18. Analysis and identification of bite marks in forensic casework.

    PubMed

    Kaur, Sandeep; Krishan, Kewal; Chatterjee, Preetika M; Kanchan, Tanuj

    2013-09-01

    Analysis of bite marks plays an important role in personal identification in forensic casework. Bite marks can be recorded in violent crimes such as sexual offences, homicides, child abuse cases, and during sports events. The arrangement, size and alignment of human teeth are individualistic to each person. Teeth, acting as tools leave recognizable marks depending on tooth arrangement, malocclusion, habits, occupation, tooth fracture, and missing or extra teeth. Bite mark identification is based on the individuality of a dentition, which is used to match a bite mark to a suspect. Bite marks are often considered as valuable alternative to fingerprinting and DNA identification in forensic examinations. The present review describes the classification, characteristics, mechanism of production, and appearance of bite mark injuries, collection of evidence, comparison techniques, and technical aids in the analysis of the bite marks. PMID:24352302

  19. Forensic webwatch: Forensic computing.

    PubMed

    Bouhaidar, R

    2005-02-01

    With the rapid and continuous development of information technology, policing faces new challenges. As computer equipments are becoming cheaper and the internet more readily available, computer crime and criminal exploitation is on the increase. Investigating such crimes requires identification, preservation, analysis and presentation of digital evidence, the key elements of forensic computing. This is helped by the fact that Locard's principle is applicable to this branch of science as much as in other areas of forensic science. This webwatch considers the ever evolving area of Forensic Computing. PMID:15763691

  20. Forensic Chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, Suzanne

    2009-07-01

    Forensic chemistry is unique among chemical sciences in that its research, practice, and presentation must meet the needs of both the scientific and the legal communities. As such, forensic chemistry research is applied and derivative by nature and design, and it emphasizes metrology (the science of measurement) and validation. Forensic chemistry has moved away from its analytical roots and is incorporating a broader spectrum of chemical sciences. Existing forensic practices are being revisited as the purview of forensic chemistry extends outward from drug analysis and toxicology into such diverse areas as combustion chemistry, materials science, and pattern evidence.

  1. Rapid Disaster Analysis based on SAR Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, C. H.; Soergel, U.

    2015-03-01

    Due to all-day and all-weather capability spaceborne SAR is a valuable means for rapid mapping during and after disaster. In this paper, three change detection techniques based on SAR data are discussed: (1) initial coarse change detection, (2) flooded area detection, and (3) linear-feature change detection. The 2011 Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami is used as case study, where earthquake and tsunami events provide a complex case for this study. In (1), pre- and post-event TerraSAR-X images are coregistered accurately to produce a false-color image. Such image provides a quick and rough overview of potential changes, which is useful for initial decision making and identifies areas worthwhile to be analysed further in more depth. In (2), the post-event TerraSAR-X image is used to extract the flooded area by morphological approaches. In (3), we are interested in detecting changes of linear shape as indicator for modified man-made objects. Morphological approaches, e.g. thresholding, simply extract pixel-based changes in the difference image. However, in this manner many irrelevant changes are highlighted, too (e.g., farming activity, speckle). In this study, Curvelet filtering is applied in the difference image not only to suppress false alarms but also to enhance the change signals of linear-feature form (e.g. buildings) in settlements. Afterwards, thresholding is conducted to extract linear-shaped changed areas. These three techniques mentioned above are designed to be simple and applicable in timely disaster analysis. They are all validated by comparing with the change map produced by Center for Satellite Based Crisis Information, DLR.

  2. Spatial Durbin model analysis macroeconomic loss due to natural disasters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kusrini, D. E.; Mukhtasor

    2015-03-01

    Magnitude of the damage and losses caused by natural disasters is huge for Indonesia, therefore this study aimed to analyze the effects of natural disasters for macroeconomic losses that occurred in 115 cities/districts across Java during 2012. Based on the results of previous studies it is suspected that it contains effects of spatial dependencies in this case, so that the completion of this case is performed using a regression approach to the area, namely Analysis of Spatial Durbin Model (SDM). The obtained significant predictor variable is population, and predictor variable with a significant weighting is the number of occurrences of disasters, i.e., disasters in the region which have an impact on other neighboring regions. Moran's I index value using the weighted Queen Contiguity also showed significant results, meaning that the incidence of disasters in the region will decrease the value of GDP in other.

  3. Forensic Analysis Demonstration via Hawaii Five-O

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shmaefsky, Brian R.

    2006-01-01

    "Forensics," in its most universal sense, is defined as the use of science or technology in the investigation and establishment of facts or evidence for determining identity or relatedness. Most forensic reasoning is used for arguing legal matters. However, forensic studies are also used in agronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, and physics to

  4. Forensic Analysis Demonstration via Hawaii Five-O

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shmaefsky, Brian R.

    2006-01-01

    "Forensics," in its most universal sense, is defined as the use of science or technology in the investigation and establishment of facts or evidence for determining identity or relatedness. Most forensic reasoning is used for arguing legal matters. However, forensic studies are also used in agronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, and physics to…

  5. Forensic analysis of Malin landslide in India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ering, P.; Kulkarni, R.; Kolekar, Y.; Dasaka, S. M.; Babu, G. L., Sr.

    2015-09-01

    A devastating landslide occurred on 30th July 2014, resulting in the burial of a village of about 40 houses called Malin, in western India and also led to about 160 deaths. The landslide was triggered by heavy rainfall in the area and mass movement of debris. The paper investigates slope failure in the Malin area using back analysis and numerical methods. Site investigation was conducted to obtain representative information of the area. Finite difference analyses using FLAC 2D is performed for the failed slope to determine the possible cause of failure. Analysis results show that slope failure occurred due to the loss of suction strength at the interface between rock and local soil.

  6. Objective analysis of toolmarks in forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Grieve, Taylor N.

    2013-03-01

    Since the 1993 court case of Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc. the subjective nature of toolmark comparison has been questioned by attorneys and law enforcement agencies alike. This has led to an increased drive to establish objective comparison techniques with known error rates, much like those that DNA analysis is able to provide. This push has created research in which the 3-D surface profile of two different marks are characterized and the marks’ cross-sections are run through a comparative statistical algorithm to acquire a value that is intended to indicate the likelihood of a match between the marks. The aforementioned algorithm has been developed and extensively tested through comparison of evenly striated marks made by screwdrivers. However, this algorithm has yet to be applied to quasi-striated marks such as those made by the shear edge of slip-joint pliers. The results of this algorithm’s application to the surface of copper wire will be presented. Objective mark comparison also extends to comparison of toolmarks made by firearms. In an effort to create objective comparisons, microstamping of firing pins and breech faces has been introduced. This process involves placing unique alphanumeric identifiers surrounded by a radial code on the surface of firing pins, which transfer to the cartridge’s primer upon firing. Three different guns equipped with microstamped firing pins were used to fire 3000 cartridges. These cartridges are evaluated based on the clarity of their alphanumeric transfers and the clarity of the radial code surrounding the alphanumerics.

  7. Use of Stable Isotopes in Forensic Analysis of Microorganisms

    SciTech Connect

    Kreuzer-Martin, Helen W.; Hegg, Eric L.

    2012-01-18

    The use of isotopic signatures for forensic analysis of biological materials is well-established, and the same general principles that apply to interpretation of stable isotope content of C, N, O, and H apply to the analysis of microorganisms. Heterotrophic microorganisms derive their isotopic content from their growth substrates, which are largely plant and animal products, and the water in their culture medium. Thus the isotope signatures of microbes are tied to their growth environment. The C, N, O, and H isotope ratios of spores have been demonstrated to constitute highly discriminating signatures for sample matching. They can rule out specific samples of media and/or water as possible production media, and can predict isotope ratio ranges of the culture media and water used to produce a given sample. These applications have been developed and tested through analyses of approximately 250 samples of Bacillus subtilis spores and over 500 samples of culture media, providing a strong statistical basis for data interpretation. A Bayesian statistical framework for integrating stable isotope data with other types of signatures derived from microorganisms has been able to characterize the culture medium used to produce spores of various Bacillus species, leveraging isotopic differences in different medium types and demonstrating the power of data integration for forensic investigations.

  8. An intelligent crowdsourcing system for forensic analysis of surveillance video

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tahboub, Khalid; Gadgil, Neeraj; Ribera, Javier; Delgado, Blanca; Delp, Edward J.

    2015-03-01

    Video surveillance systems are of a great value for public safety. With an exponential increase in the number of cameras, videos obtained from surveillance systems are often archived for forensic purposes. Many automatic methods have been proposed to do video analytics such as anomaly detection and human activity recognition. However, such methods face significant challenges due to object occlusions, shadows and scene illumination changes. In recent years, crowdsourcing has become an effective tool that utilizes human intelligence to perform tasks that are challenging for machines. In this paper, we present an intelligent crowdsourcing system for forensic analysis of surveillance video that includes the video recorded as a part of search and rescue missions and large-scale investigation tasks. We describe a method to enhance crowdsourcing by incorporating human detection, re-identification and tracking. At the core of our system, we use a hierarchal pyramid model to distinguish the crowd members based on their ability, experience and performance record. Our proposed system operates in an autonomous fashion and produces a final output of the crowdsourcing analysis consisting of a set of video segments detailing the events of interest as one storyline.

  9. Computer-aided fiber analysis for crime scene forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hildebrandt, Mario; Arndt, Christian; Makrushin, Andrey; Dittmann, Jana

    2012-03-01

    The forensic analysis of fibers is currently completely manual and therefore time consuming. The automation of analysis steps can significantly support forensic experts and reduce the time, required for the investigation. Moreover, a subjective expert belief is extended by objective machine estimation. This work proposes the pattern recognition pipeline containing the digital acquisition of a fiber media, the pre-processing for fiber segmentation, and the extraction of the distinctive characteristics of fibers. Currently, basic geometrical features like width, height, area of optically dominant fibers are investigated. In order to support the automatic classification of fibers, supervised machine learning algorithms are evaluated. The experimental setup includes a car seat and two pieces clothing of a different fabric. As preliminary work, acrylic as synthetic and sheep wool as natural fiber are chosen to be classified. While sitting on the seat, a test person leaves textile fibers. The test aims at automatic distinguishing of clothes through the fiber traces gained from the seat with the help of adhesive tape. The digitalization of fiber samples is provided by a contactless chromatic white light sensor. First test results showed, that two optically very different fibers can be properly assigned to their corresponding fiber type. The best classifier achieves an accuracy of 75 percent correctly classified samples for our suggested features.

  10. Quantitative Phase Analysis by the Rietveld Method for Forensic Science.

    PubMed

    Deng, Fei; Lin, Xiaodong; He, Yonghong; Li, Shu; Zi, Run; Lai, Shijun

    2015-07-01

    Quantitative phase analysis (QPA) is helpful to determine the type attribute of the object because it could present the content of the constituents. QPA by Rietveld method requires neither measurement of calibration data nor the use of an internal standard; however, the approximate crystal structure of each phase in a mixture is necessary. In this study, 8 synthetic mixtures composed of potassium nitrate and sulfur were analyzed by Rietveld QPA method. The Rietveld refinement was accomplished with a material analysis using diffraction program and evaluated by three agreement indices. Results showed that Rietveld QPA yielded precise results, with errors generally less than 2.0% absolute. In addition, a criminal case which was broken successfully with the help of Rietveld QPA method was also introduced. This method will allow forensic investigators to acquire detailed information of the material evidence, which could point out the direction for case detection and court proceedings. PMID:25782471

  11. Automatic forensic analysis of automotive paints using optical microscopy.

    PubMed

    Thoonen, Guy; Nys, Bart; Vander Haeghen, Yves; De Roy, Gilbert; Scheunders, Paul

    2016-02-01

    The timely identification of vehicles involved in an accident, such as a hit-and-run situation, bears great importance in forensics. To this end, procedures have been defined for analyzing car paint samples that combine techniques such as visual analysis and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. This work proposes a new methodology in order to automate the visual analysis using image retrieval. Specifically, color and texture information is extracted from a microscopic image of a recovered paint sample, and this information is then compared with the same features for a database of paint types, resulting in a shortlist of candidate paints. In order to demonstrate the operation of the methodology, a test database has been set up and two retrieval experiments have been performed. The first experiment quantifies the performance of the procedure for retrieving exact matches, while the second experiment emulates the real-life situation of paint samples that experience changes in color and texture over time. PMID:26774250

  12. Forensic analysis of wooden safety matches -- a case study.

    PubMed

    Farmer, N L; Ruffell, A; Meier-Augenstein, W; Meneely, J; Kalin, R M

    2007-09-01

    In this case, an individual was suspected of attempting to burn materials potentially relating to a murder case. A number of spent and unspent matches were seized at the scene by police for forensic examination. Coincidentally, a police raid at the suspect's house revealed a number of matchboxes, all of the same brand, containing matches that had a visual similarity to those recovered at the scene. Stable Isotope Profiling (SIP) was used to assess whether matches could either be distinguished or shown to be indistinguishable by 13C and 2H isotopic composition. These results were then compared to those from the X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis of match heads and microscopy of the wood. SIP showed the scene matches and seized matches to be different, which was confirmed by XRD and microscopy analyses. PMID:17941328

  13. Age estimation in forensic sciences: Application of combined aspartic acid racemization and radiocarbon analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Alkass, K; Buchholz, B A; Ohtani, S; Yamamoto, T; Druid, H; Spalding, S L

    2009-11-02

    Age determination of unknown human bodies is important in the setting of a crime investigation or a mass disaster, since the age at death, birth date and year of death, as well as gender, can guide investigators to the correct identity among a large number of possible matches. Traditional morphological methods used by anthropologists to determine age are often imprecise, whereas chemical analysis of tooth dentin, such as aspartic acid racemization has shown reproducible and more precise results. In this paper we analyze teeth from Swedish individuals using both aspartic acid racemization and radiocarbon methodologies. The rationale behind using radiocarbon analysis is that above-ground testing of nuclear weapons during the cold war (1955-1963) caused an extreme increase in global levels of carbon-14 ({sup 14}C) which have been carefully recorded over time. Forty-four teeth from 41 individuals were analyzed using aspartic acid racemization analysis of tooth crown dentin or radiocarbon analysis of enamel and ten of these were split and subjected to both radiocarbon and racemization analysis. Combined analysis showed that the two methods correlated well (R2=0.66, p < 0.05). Radiocarbon analysis showed an excellent precision with an overall absolute error of 0.6 {+-} 04 years. Aspartic acid racemization also showed a good precision with an overall absolute error of 5.4 {+-} 4.2 years. Whereas radiocarbon analysis gives an estimated year of birth, racemization analysis indicates the chronological age of the individual at the time of death. We show how these methods in combination can also assist in the estimation of date of death of an unidentified victim. This strategy can be of significant assistance in forensic casework involving dead victim identification.

  14. Age estimation in forensic sciences: application of combined aspartic acid racemization and radiocarbon analysis.

    PubMed

    Alkass, Kanar; Buchholz, Bruce A; Ohtani, Susumu; Yamamoto, Toshiharu; Druid, Henrik; Spalding, Kirsty L

    2010-05-01

    Age determination of unknown human bodies is important in the setting of a crime investigation or a mass disaster because the age at death, birth date, and year of death as well as gender can guide investigators to the correct identity among a large number of possible matches. Traditional morphological methods used by anthropologists to determine age are often imprecise, whereas chemical analysis of tooth dentin, such as aspartic acid racemization, has shown reproducible and more precise results. In this study, we analyzed teeth from Swedish individuals using both aspartic acid racemization and radiocarbon methodologies. The rationale behind using radiocarbon analysis is that aboveground testing of nuclear weapons during the cold war (1955-1963) caused an extreme increase in global levels of carbon-14 ((14)C), which has been carefully recorded over time. Forty-four teeth from 41 individuals were analyzed using aspartic acid racemization analysis of tooth crown dentin or radiocarbon analysis of enamel, and 10 of these were split and subjected to both radiocarbon and racemization analysis. Combined analysis showed that the two methods correlated well (R(2) = 0.66, p < 0.05). Radiocarbon analysis showed an excellent precision with an overall absolute error of 1.0 +/- 0.6 years. Aspartic acid racemization also showed a good precision with an overall absolute error of 5.4 +/- 4.2 years. Whereas radiocarbon analysis gives an estimated year of birth, racemization analysis indicates the chronological age of the individual at the time of death. We show how these methods in combination can also assist in the estimation of date of death of an unidentified victim. This strategy can be of significant assistance in forensic casework involving dead victim identification. PMID:19965905

  15. Legal, technical, and interpretational considerations in the forensic analysis of viruses.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Mark R; Weaver, Scott C; Winegar, Richard A

    2013-03-01

    The forensic evaluation of viruses presents new challenges to the forensic science community. Although many criminal cases have been adjudicated involving the deliberate transmission of viruses, especially HIV, this review provides a general approach to viral forensics, especially in light of significant biodefense challenges. Newly emerging techniques of nucleic acid sequencing are discussed in a forensic context. Human mitochondrial DNA analysis, wherein mixed profiles are routinely assessed in a forensic context, provides the groundwork for an interpretational approach to the issue of mixed DNA sequences. The importance of phylogenetic classification is discussed as both providing an integrated graphical depiction of the structure of viral nucleic acid variation as well as offering a tool that can be used to assess the relatedness of complex populations of nucleic acids. PMID:23406474

  16. NanoSIMS analysis of Bacillus spores for forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Weber, P K; Davisson, M L; Velsko, S P

    2010-02-23

    The threat associated with the potential use of radiological, nuclear, chemical and biological materials in terrorist acts has resulted in new fields of forensic science requiring the application of state-of-the-science analytical techniques. Since the anthrax letter attacks in the United States in the fall of 2001, there has been increased interest in physical and chemical characterization of bacterial spores. While molecular methods are powerful tools for identifying genetic differences, other methods may be able to differentiate genetically identical samples based on physical and chemical properties, as well as provide complimentary information, such as methods of production and approximate date of production. Microanalysis has the potential to contribute significantly to microbial forensics. Bacillus spores are highly structured, consisting of a core, cortex, coat, and in some species, an exosporium. This structure provides a template for constraining elemental abundance differences at the nanometer scale. The primary controls on the distribution of major elements in spores are likely structural and physiological. For example, P and Ca are known to be abundant in the spore core because that is where P-rich nucleic acids and Cadipicolinic acid are located, respectively. Trace elements are known to bind to the spore coat but the controls on these elements are less well understood. Elemental distributions and abundances may be directly related to spore production, purification and stabilization methodologies, which are of particular interest for forensic investigation. To this end, we are developing a high-resolution secondary ion mass spectrometry method using a Cameca NanoSIMS 50 to study the distribution and abundance of trace elements in bacterial spores. In this presentation we will review and compare methods for preparing and analyzing samples, as well as review results on the distribution and abundance of elements in bacterial spores. We use NanoSIMS to directly image samples as well as depth profile samples. The directly imaged samples are sectioned to present a flat surface for analysis. We use focused ion beam (FIB) milling to top-cut individual spores to create flat surfaces for NanoSIMS analysis. Depth profiling can be used on whole spores, which are consumed in the process of analysis. The two methods generate comparable results, with the expected distribution of P and Ca. Ca-compatible elements, such as Mg and Mn, are found to follow the distribution of Ca. The distribution of other elements will be discussed. We envision the first application of this methodology will be to sample matching for trace samples. Towards this end, we are generating a baseline data set for samples produced by multiple laboratories. Preliminary results suggest that this method provides significant probative value for identifying samples produced by the same method in the same laboratory, as well as coming from the same initial production run. The results of this study will be presented.

  17. Forensic Analysis of Windows Hosts Using UNIX-based Tools

    SciTech Connect

    Cory Altheide

    2004-07-19

    Many forensic examiners are introduced to UNIX-based forensic utilities when faced with investigating a UNIX-like operating system for the first time. They will use these utilities for this very specific task, because in many cases these tools are the only ones for the given job. For example, at the time of this writing, given a FreeBSD 5.x file system, the author's only choice is to use The Coroner's Toolkit running on FreeBSD 5.x. However, many of the same tools examiners use for the occasional UNIX-like system investigation are extremely capable when a Windows system is the target. Indeed, the Linux operating system itself can prove to be an extremely useful forensics platform with very little use of specialized forensics utilities at all.

  18. Analysis of the alleged Kyshtym disaster

    SciTech Connect

    Soran, D.M.; Stillman, D.B.

    1982-01-01

    The alleged Kyshtym disaster has been an intriguing intelligence puzzle for almost 25 years. Zhores Medvedev, a Soviet dissident, has written numerous journal articles as well as two books on the subject. He has argued that a vast contaminated area exists east of the city of Kyshtym in the southern Ural Mountains. Further, he has alleged that a nuclear waste disposal accident in 1957 to 1958 caused the contamination. The authors of this report are in partial disagreement with Medvedev's first allegation and in complete disagreement with his second. A contaminated area does exist east of Kyshtym, but Soviet carelessness coupled with general disregard for the citizenry and the environment are the prime causative factors, not a nuclear waste accident.

  19. Utility of caffeine analysis for forensic hair discrimination.

    PubMed

    Tanada, N; Kashimura, S; Kageura, M; Hara, K

    1998-08-01

    Utility of caffeine analysis for the purpose of forensic hair discrimination was evaluated. Methanol extracts of each 5-cm strand of scalp hair, after its incubation at 37 degrees C for 15 h, was analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). For quantitative analysis of caffeine, caffeine-d3 was added as internal standard to the methanol extract. Hair specimens were obtained from three victims and from twenty-two volunteers. The results showed that caffeine levels in hair varied according to each individual; caffeine was detected up to a maximum level of 4.19 ng/5-cm hair. The concentrations of caffeine in hair obtained from four different regions of the scalp in twenty-two volunteers showed a coefficient of variation not greater than 24.7% for each individual. Based on our data, it was concluded that caffeine levels give relatively high reliability for discriminating a victim's hair from others at a criminal or accidental scene, although it should be used in combination with morphological examination and ABO blood group determination. PMID:9893441

  20. [Reliability of forensic evidence in breath alcohol analysis].

    PubMed

    Bilzer, N; Sprung, R; Schewe, G

    1994-01-01

    Drinking experiments were performed by using a device-combination appreciated by the German National Institut of Health (BGA) as being evidential and proposed as prototype for the future practice of breath-alcohol analysis. Comparing the breath- (BrAC) and blood alcohol-concentrations (BAC), however, there were relevant deviations. Our evaluation of the facts published Schoknecht demonstrated nevertheless distinct divergences in comparison to the blood alcohol determination: A BAC-nominal of 1% gave divergences of the nominal up to 0.25% resulted from the measured BrAC-values of Schoknecht on corresponding conversion. The divergences are distinctly above those that are tolerated by legislation according to previous standards for the blood alcohol determination. Consequently it requires further checking in standardized experiments and field experiments in order to be able to judge the practice usefulness; furthermore such further checking would have to be implemented by unconcerned institutions. Basing on these experiments an evidential breath-alcohol analysis for forensic purposes has not been established yet. PMID:8142085

  1. Development of a novel forensic STR multiplex for ancestry analysis and extended identity testing.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Chris; Fernandez-Formoso, Luis; Gelabert-Besada, Miguel; Garcia-Magariños, Manuel; Santos, Carla; Fondevila, Manuel; Carracedo, Angel; Lareu, Maria Victoria

    2013-04-01

    There is growing interest in developing additional DNA typing techniques to provide better investigative leads in forensic analysis. These include inference of genetic ancestry and prediction of common physical characteristics of DNA donors. To date, forensic ancestry analysis has centered on population-divergent SNPs but these binary loci cannot reliably detect DNA mixtures, common in forensic samples. Furthermore, STR genotypes, forming the principal DNA profiling system, are not routinely combined with forensic SNPs to strengthen frequency data available for ancestry inference. We report development of a 12-STR multiplex composed of ancestry informative marker STRs (AIM-STRs) selected from 434 tetranucleotide repeat loci. We adapted our online Bayesian classifier for AIM-SNPs: Snipper, to handle multiallele STR data using frequency-based training sets. We assessed the ability of the 12-plex AIM-STRs to differentiate CEPH Human Genome Diversity Panel populations, plus their informativeness combined with established forensic STRs and AIM-SNPs. We found combining STRs and SNPs improves the success rate of ancestry assignments while providing a reliable mixture detection system lacking from SNP analysis alone. As the 12 STRs generally show a broad range of alleles in all populations, they provide highly informative supplementary STRs for extended relationship testing and identification of missing persons with incomplete reference pedigrees. Lastly, mixed marker approaches (combining STRs with binary loci) for simple ancestry inference tests beyond forensic analysis bring advantages and we discuss the genotyping options available. PMID:23400880

  2. Forensic palynological analysis of intestinal contents of a Korean mummy.

    PubMed

    Arguelles, Paulette; Reinhard, Karl; Shin, Dong Hoon

    2015-06-01

    Experimental studies show that pollen resides in the intestinal tract for a minimum of seven days to at least 21 days. Because of this long residence time, pollen analysis is an important avenue of forensic research. Pollen provides evidence of the environment of the decedent as well as foods and medicine. We analyzed a coprolite recovered from a Korean mummy. The decedent was a high-ranking general who lived during the 16th or 17th centuries. Twenty pollen types were recovered. These ranged from 100 s to 10,000 s of pollen grains per gram of coprolite. Importantly, comparison of the coprolite pollen spectrum to modern aeropalynology studies of Korea suggests that the general died in winter between middle November to late February. Economic pollen types were most abundant. Economic refers to dietary, medicinal, spice, and beverage types. Dietary pollen types include pollen from Oryza (rice), Eriogonum (buckwheat), Brassicaceae (mustard family), and Solanaceae (tomato-chile pepper family). Pollen consistent with dandelion is present and may represent its use as food. Tens of thousands of grains from water plants, bur-reed or cattail, dominate the pollen spectrum. We believe that this was introduced with water. The large numbers of water-related pollen suggest that the general consumed broth, tea, or soup for a considerable time before death. PMID:25998651

  3. Forensic analysis of the microbiome of phones and shoes

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Lax, Simon; Hampton-Marcell, Jarrad T.; Gibbons, Sean M.; Colares, Geórgia Barguil; Smith, Daniel; Eisen, Jonathan A.; Gilbert, Jack A.

    2015-05-12

    Background: Microbial interaction between human-associated objects and the environments we inhabit may have forensic implications, and the extent to which microbes are shared between individuals inhabiting the same space may be relevant to human health and disease transmission. In this study, two participants sampled the front and back of their cell phones, four different locations on the soles of their shoes, and the floor beneath them every waking hour over a 2-day period. A further 89 participants took individual samples of their shoes and phones at three different scientific conferences. Results: Samples taken from different surface types maintained significantly differentmore » microbial community structures. The impact of the floor microbial community on that of the shoe environments was strong and immediate, as evidenced by Procrustes analysis of shoe replicates and significant correlation between shoe and floor samples taken at the same time point. Supervised learning was highly effective at determining which participant had taken a given shoe or phone sample, and a Bayesian method was able to determine which participant had taken each shoe sample based entirely on its similarity to the floor samples. Both shoe and phone samples taken by conference participants clustered into distinct groups based on location, though much more so when an unweighted distance metric was used, suggesting sharing of low-abundance microbial taxa between individuals inhabiting the same space. In conclusion, correlations between microbial community sources and sinks allow for inference of the interactions between humans and their environment.« less

  4. An Architecture for the Forensic Analysis of Windows System Artifacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hashim, Noor; Sutherland, Iain

    We propose an architecture to enable the forensic investigator to analyze and visualise a range of system generated artifacts with known and unknown data structures. The architecture is intended to facilitate the extraction and analysis of operating system artifacts while being extensible, flexible and reusable. The examples selected for the paper are the Windows Event Logs and Swap Files. Event logs can reveal evidence regarding logons, authentication, accounts and privileged use and can address questions relating to which user accounts were being used and which machines were accessed. The Swap file may contain fragments of data, remnants or entire documents, e-mail messages or the results of internet browsing which may reveal past user activities. Issues relating to understanding and visualising artifacts data structures are discussed and possible solutions are explored. We outline a proposed solution; an extraction component responsible for extracting data and preparing the data for visualisation, a storage subsystem consisting of a database that holds all of the extracted data and the interface, an integrated set of visualization tools.

  5. Forensic odontology identification using smile photograph analysis--case reports.

    PubMed

    Silva, R F; Pereira, S D; Prado, F B; Daruge, E; Daruge, E

    2008-06-01

    The identification of unknown human by smile photographs that show specific characteristics of each individual has found wide acceptance all over the world. Therefore this paper shows this situation reporting different cases which smile photograph analysis were crucial to determine the positive identification of unidentified human bodies. All the cases were subjected to personal identification by photographs of smile including one adult male found in an advanced stage of decomposition, one adult female disappeared during an ecotourism trip, and one carbonized body of a male individual found in a forest region. During the autopsy the photographs of the smile were used by comparison of the ante and postmortem images gave accurate and useful information not only about dental state but also the anatomical features surrounding the upper and lower anterior dental arches. This method is not time-consuming and also has the advantage of allowing extraoral dental examination. It is also recommended when there is a need to provide quantitative data for a forensic identification based on these structures. PMID:22689352

  6. Stable Isotope Ratios and the Forensic Analysis of Microorganisms

    SciTech Connect

    Kreuzer-Martin, Helen W.; Jarman, Kristin H.

    2007-06-01

    In the aftermath of the anthrax letters of 2001, researchers have been exploring various analytical signatures for the purpose of characterizing the production environment of microorganisms. One such signature is stable isotope ratios, which in heterotrophs are a function of nutrient and water sources. Here we discuss the use of stable isotope ratios in microbe forensics, using as a database the carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen stable isotope ratios of 247 separate cultures of B. subtilis 6051 spores produced on a total of 32 different culture media. In the context of using stable isotope ratios as a signature for sample matching, we present an analysis of variation between individual samples, between cultures produced in tandem, and between cultures produced in the same medium but at different times. Additionally, we correlate the stable isotope ratios of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen for growth medium nutrients or water with those of spores and show examples of how these relationships can be used to exclude nutrient or water samples as possible growth substrates for specific cultures.

  7. Forensic analysis of the microbiome of phones and shoes

    SciTech Connect

    Lax, Simon; Hampton-Marcell, Jarrad T.; Gibbons, Sean M.; Colares, Geórgia Barguil; Smith, Daniel; Eisen, Jonathan A.; Gilbert, Jack A.

    2015-05-12

    Background: Microbial interaction between human-associated objects and the environments we inhabit may have forensic implications, and the extent to which microbes are shared between individuals inhabiting the same space may be relevant to human health and disease transmission. In this study, two participants sampled the front and back of their cell phones, four different locations on the soles of their shoes, and the floor beneath them every waking hour over a 2-day period. A further 89 participants took individual samples of their shoes and phones at three different scientific conferences. Results: Samples taken from different surface types maintained significantly different microbial community structures. The impact of the floor microbial community on that of the shoe environments was strong and immediate, as evidenced by Procrustes analysis of shoe replicates and significant correlation between shoe and floor samples taken at the same time point. Supervised learning was highly effective at determining which participant had taken a given shoe or phone sample, and a Bayesian method was able to determine which participant had taken each shoe sample based entirely on its similarity to the floor samples. Both shoe and phone samples taken by conference participants clustered into distinct groups based on location, though much more so when an unweighted distance metric was used, suggesting sharing of low-abundance microbial taxa between individuals inhabiting the same space. In conclusion, correlations between microbial community sources and sinks allow for inference of the interactions between humans and their environment.

  8. Potential Analysis of Rainfall-induced Sediment Disaster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jing-Wen; Chen, Yie-Ruey; Hsieh, Shun-Chieh; Tsai, Kuang-Jung; Chue, Yung-Sheng

    2014-05-01

    Most of the mountain regions in Taiwan are sedimentary and metamorphic rocks which are fragile and highly weathered. Severe erosion occurs due to intensive rainfall and rapid flow, the erosion is even worsen by frequent earthquakes and severely affects the stability of hillsides. Rivers are short and steep in Taiwan with large runoff differences in wet and dry seasons. Discharges respond rapidly with rainfall intensity and flood flows usually carry large amount of sediment. Because of the highly growth in economics and social change, the development in the slope land is inevitable in Taiwan. However, sediment disasters occur frequently in high and precipitous region during typhoon. To make the execution of the regulation of slope land development more efficiency, construction of evaluation model for sediment potential is very important. In this study, the Genetic Adaptive Neural Network (GANN) was implemented in texture analysis techniques for the classification of satellite images of research region before and after typhoon or extreme rainfall and to obtain surface information and hazard log data. By using GANN weight analysis, factors, levels and probabilities of disaster of the research areas are presented. Then, through geographic information system the disaster potential map is plotted to distinguish high potential regions from low potential regions. Finally, the evaluation processes for sediment disaster after rainfall due to slope land use are established. In this research, the automatic image classification and evaluation modules for sediment disaster after rainfall due to slope land disturbance and natural environment are established in MATLAB to avoid complexity and time of computation. After implementation of texture analysis techniques, the results show that the values of overall accuracy and coefficient of agreement of the time-saving image classification for different time periods are at intermediate-high level and above. The results of GANN show that the weight of building density is the largest in all slope land disturbance factors, followed by road density, orchard density, baren land density, vegetation density, and farmland density. The weight of geology is the largest in all natural environment factors, followed by slope roughness, slope, and elevation. Overlaying the locations of large sediment disaster in the past on the potential map predicted by GANN, we found that most damage areas were in the region with medium-high or high potential of landslide. Therefore, the proposed potential model of sediment disaster can be used in practice.

  9. Developing open geographic data model and analysis tools for disaster management: landslide case

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aydinoglu, A. C.; Bilgin, M. S.

    2014-10-01

    Disaster Management aims to reduce catastrophic losses of disasters as landslide. Geographic information technologies support disaster management activities for effective and collaborative data management considering complex nature of disasters. Thus, this study aims to develop interoperable geographic data model and analysis tools to manage geographic data coming from different sources. For landslide disaster, 39 scenario-based activities were analyzed with required data according to user needs in a cycle of activities at mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery phases. Interoperable geographic data model for disaster management (ADYS), enabling up-to-date exchange of geographic data, was designed compliant with standards of ISO/TC211 Geographic Information/Geomatics, Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC), and Turkey National GIS (TUCBS). Open source and free analysis toolbox was developed and tested in case study of the activities such as landslide hazard analysis and disaster warning system to support Provincial Disaster Management Centers of Turkey.

  10. Illustration and analysis of a coordinated approach to an effective forensic trace evidence capability.

    PubMed

    Stoney, David A; Stoney, Paul L

    2015-08-01

    An effective trace evidence capability is defined as one that exploits all useful particle types, chooses appropriate technologies to do so, and directly integrates the findings with case-specific problems. Limitations of current approaches inhibit the attainment of an effective capability and it has been strongly argued that a new approach to trace evidence analysis is essential. A hypothetical case example is presented to illustrate and analyze how forensic particle analysis can be used as a powerful practical tool in forensic investigations. The specifics in this example, including the casework investigation, laboratory analyses, and close professional interactions, provide focal points for subsequent analysis of how this outcome can be achieved. This leads to the specification of five key elements that are deemed necessary and sufficient for effective forensic particle analysis: (1) a dynamic forensic analytical approach, (2) concise and efficient protocols addressing particle combinations, (3) multidisciplinary capabilities of analysis and interpretation, (4) readily accessible external specialist resources, and (5) information integration and communication. A coordinating role, absent in current approaches to trace evidence analysis, is essential to achieving these elements. However, the level of expertise required for the coordinating role is readily attainable. Some additional laboratory protocols are also essential. However, none of these has greater staffing requirements than those routinely met by existing forensic trace evidence practitioners. The major challenges that remain are organizational acceptance, planning and implementation. PMID:26042437

  11. The impact of chimerism in DNA-based forensic sex determination analysis

    PubMed Central

    George, Renjith; Donald, Preethy Mary; Nagraj, Sumanth Kumbargere; Idiculla, Jose Joy; Hj Ismail, Rashid

    2013-01-01

    Sex determination is the most important step in personal identification in forensic investigations. DNA-based sex determination analysis is comparatively more reliable than the other conventional methods of sex determination analysis. Advanced technology like real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) offers accurate and reproducible results and is at the level of legal acceptance. But still there are situations like chimerism where an individual possess both male and female specific factors together in their body. Sex determination analysis in such cases can give erroneous results. This paper discusses the phenomenon of chimerism and its impact on sex determination analysis in forensic investigations. PMID:23785258

  12. Insertion-deletion polymorphisms--utilization on forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    da Costa Francez, Pablo Abdon; Rodrigues, Elzemar Martins Ribeiro; de Velasco, Afrânio Maurício; dos Santos, Sidney Emanuel Batista

    2012-07-01

    Insertion-deletion (INDEL) markers are very frequent in the human genome and present several advantages for population and forensic studies, such as low mutation rates, easy interpretation, small amplicons, easy genotyping, and the possibility of using multiplex PCR. The great adaptability of INDELs for amplification of low copy number or degraded DNA allows its using as an interesting platform of genetic identity by DNA in forensic cases. In the present study, we tested the ability of 48 diallelic INDEL markers on genotyping forensic samples collected from different biological samples related to criminal cases. Moreover, we evaluated the lowest DNA concentration with which there was amplification of all markers from each one of three indel-plex panels. When comparing the performances obtained by the indel-plex panels described in this study with results obtained using Identifiler® kit (Applied Biosystems) related to forensic samples, as well as to control samples with different concentrations of DNA, we observed superior efficiency on samples with low copy number or in the presence of inhibitors. PMID:21647760

  13. Paint Analysis Using Visible Reflectance Spectroscopy: An Undergraduate Forensic Lab

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoffman, Erin M.; Beussman, Douglas J.

    2007-01-01

    The study of forensic science is found throughout undergraduate programs in growing numbers, both as stand-alone courses as well as specific examples within existing courses. Part of the driving force for this trend is the ability to apply common chemistry techniques to everyday situations, all couched in the context of a mystery that must be…

  14. Paint Analysis Using Visible Reflectance Spectroscopy: An Undergraduate Forensic Lab

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoffman, Erin M.; Beussman, Douglas J.

    2007-01-01

    The study of forensic science is found throughout undergraduate programs in growing numbers, both as stand-alone courses as well as specific examples within existing courses. Part of the driving force for this trend is the ability to apply common chemistry techniques to everyday situations, all couched in the context of a mystery that must be

  15. A Simple Cost-Effective Framework for iPhone Forensic Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Husain, Mohammad Iftekhar; Baggili, Ibrahim; Sridhar, Ramalingam

    Apple iPhone has made significant impact on the society both as a handheld computing device and as a cellular phone. Due to the unique hardware system as well as storage structure, iPhone has already attracted the forensic community in digital investigation of the device. Currently available commercial products and methodologies for iPhone forensics are somewhat expensive, complex and often require additional hardware for analysis. Some products are not robust and often fail to extract optimal evidence without modifying the iPhone firmware which makes the analysis questionable in legal platforms. In this paper, we present a simple and inexpensive framework (iFF) for iPhone forensic analysis. Through experimental results using real device, we have shown the effectiveness of this framework in extracting digital evidence from an iPhone.

  16. Application of Material Characterization Techniques to Electrical Forensic Analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Mills, T.D.

    2003-03-11

    The application of forensic science techniques to electrical equipment failure investigation has not been widely documented in the engineering world. This paper is intended to share an example of using material characterization techniques to support an initial cause determination of an electrical component failure event. The resulting conclusion supported the initial cause determination and ruled out the possibility of design deficiencies. Thus, the qualification testing of the equipment was allowed to continue to successful completion.

  17. Forensic analysis of social networking application on iOS devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Shuhui; Wang, Lianhai

    2013-12-01

    The increased use of social networking application on iPhone and iPad make these devices a goldmine for forensic investigators. Besides, QQ, Wechat, Sina Weibo and skype applications are very popular in China and didn't draw attention to researchers. These social networking applications are used not only on computers, but also mobile phones and tablets. This paper focuses on conducting forensic analysis on these four social networking applications on iPhone and iPad devices. The tests consisted of installing the social networking applications on each device, conducting common user activities through each application and correlation analysis with other activities. Advices to the forensic investigators are also given. It could help the investigators to describe the crime behavior and reconstruct the crime venue.

  18. Role of deoxyribonucleic acid technology in forensic dentistry

    PubMed Central

    Datta, Pankaj; Datta, Sonia Sood

    2012-01-01

    In the last few years, Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) analysis methods have been applied to forensic cases. Forensic dental record comparison has been used for human identification in cases where destruction of bodily tissues or prolonged exposure to the environment has made other means of identification impractical, that is, after fire exposure or mass disaster. Teeth play an important role in identification and criminology, due to their unique characteristics and relatively high degree of physical and chemical resistance. The use of a DNA profile test in forensic dentistry offers a new perspective in human identification. The DNA is responsible for storing all the genetic material and is unique to each individual. The currently available DNA tests have high reliability and are accepted as legal proofs in courts. This article gives an overview of the evolution of DNA technology in the last few years, highlighting its importance in cases of forensic investigation. PMID:23087582

  19. The 'relics of Joan of Arc': a forensic multidisciplinary analysis.

    PubMed

    Charlier, P; Poupon, J; Eb, A; De Mazancourt, P; Gilbert, T; Huynh-Charlier, I; Loublier, Y; Verhille, A M; Moulheirat, C; Patou-Mathis, M; Robbiola, L; Montagut, R; Masson, F; Etcheberry, A; Brun, L; Willerslev, E; de la Grandmaison, G Lorin; Durigon, M

    2010-01-30

    Archaeological remains can provide concrete cases, making it possible to develop, refine or validate medico-legal techniques. In the case of the so-called 'Joan of Arc's relics' (a group of bone and archaeological remains known as the 'Bottle of Chinon'), 14 specialists analysed the samples such as a cadaver X of carbonised aspect: forensic anthropologist, medical examiners, pathologists, geneticists, radiologist, biochemists, palynologists, zoologist and archaeologist. Materials, methods and results of this study are presented here. This study aims to offer an exploitable methodology for the modern medico-legal cases of small quantities of human bones of carbonised aspect. PMID:19913375

  20. GC-MS Analysis of [gamma]-Hydroxybutyric Acid Analogs: A Forensic Chemistry Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henck, Colin; Nally, Luke

    2007-01-01

    An upper-division forensic chemistry experiment is described. It involves using glycolic acid and sodium glycolate as analogs of [gamma]-hydroxybutyric acid and its sodium salt. The experiment shows the use of silylation in GC-MS analysis and gives students the opportunity to work with a commonly used silylating reagent,…

  1. Forensic pedology, forensic geology, forensic geoscience, geoforensics and soil forensics.

    PubMed

    Ruffell, Alastair

    2010-10-10

    We now have a confusing set of five commonly used terms for the application of Earth evidence in forensic science. This confusion is resulting in Earth scientists who use these methods mentioning different terms, sometimes for the same type of study. Likewise, forensic scientists, police/law enforcement officers and those employed by courts of law are becoming confused as to what each term means. A nomenclatural framework (based on the first use of each term) is proposed to encourage consistency in the use of terminology. Generally, the number of Earth science applications has grown through time, from soil and sediment analysis to remote sensing and GIS. The issue of where forensic biology and microbiology sits with these uses of Earth evidence is considered. PMID:20430544

  2. Global Human Settlement Analysis for Disaster Risk Reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pesaresi, M.; Ehrlich, D.; Ferri, S.; Florczyk, A.; Freire, S.; Haag, F.; Halkia, M.; Julea, A. M.; Kemper, T.; Soille, P.

    2015-04-01

    The Global Human Settlement Layer (GHSL) is supported by the European Commission, Joint Research Center (JRC) in the frame of his institutional research activities. Scope of GHSL is developing, testing and applying the technologies and analysis methods integrated in the JRC Global Human Settlement analysis platform for applications in support to global disaster risk reduction initiatives (DRR) and regional analysis in the frame of the European Cohesion policy. GHSL analysis platform uses geo-spatial data, primarily remotely sensed and population. GHSL also cooperates with the Group on Earth Observation on SB-04-Global Urban Observation and Information, and various international partners andWorld Bank and United Nations agencies. Some preliminary results integrating global human settlement information extracted from Landsat data records of the last 40 years and population data are presented.

  3. Droplet Impact on Inclined Surfaces for Forensic Bloodstain Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Marc; Lockard, Michael; Neitzel, G. Paul

    2015-11-01

    During a crime scene investigation, bloodstains are used to infer the size, impact angle, and velocity of the blood droplet that produced the stain. This droplet impact process was explored using experiments and numerical simulations of droplets impacting planar, inclined surfaces with different roughness and wetting properties over a range of Reynolds numbers (1,000 - 5,500) and Weber numbers (200 - 2,000) typical of some forensics applications. Results will be presented showing how the size and shape of the final elliptical bloodstain varies with impact angle and surface roughness. The common forensics practice to predict the impact angle is fairly accurate for near-normal impacts, but it under-predicts the angle for oblique impacts less than about 40° and this effect worsens for rougher surfaces. The spreading of the droplet normal to the impact plane is shown to follow that of a droplet under normal impact as the impact velocity increases. This effect is also lessened by increased surface roughness. The reasons for these effects will be explored using a new GPU-based wavelet-adaptive flow simulation, which can resolve the flows near the solid surface and near the moving contact line of these droplets for the large Reynolds and Weber numbers of these experiments. Supported by the National Institute of Justice.

  4. Maori heads (mokomokai): the usefulness of a complete forensic analysis procedure.

    PubMed

    Charlier, Philippe; Huynh-Charlier, Isabelle; Brun, Luc; Champagnat, Julie; Laquay, Laetitia; Hervé, Christian

    2014-09-01

    Based on an analysis of 19 mummified Maori heads (mokomokai) referred to our forensic laboratory for anthropological analysis prior to their official repatriation from France to New Zealand, and data from the anthropological and medical literature, we propose a complete forensic procedure for the analysis of such pieces. A list of 12 original morphological criteria was developed. Items included the sex, age at death, destruction of the skull base, the presence of argil deposits in the inner part of the skull, nostrils closed with exogenous material, sewing of eyelids and lips, pierced earlobes, ante-mortem and/or post-mortem tattoos, the presence of vegetal fibers within nasal cavities, and other pathological or anthropological anomalies. These criteria were tested for all 19 mokomokai repatriated to New Zealand by the French authorities. Further complementary analyses were limited to fiberscopic examination of the intracranial cavities because of the taboo on any sampling requested by the Maori authorities. In the context of global repatriation of human artifacts to native communities, this type of anthropological expertise is increasingly frequently requested of forensic anthropologists and other practitioners. We discuss the reasons for and against repatriating non-authentic artifacts to such communities and the role played by forensic anthropologists during the authentication process. PMID:24748277

  5. Rapid Disaster Analysis based on Remote Sensing: A Case Study about the Tohoku Tsunami Disaster 2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, C. H.; Soergel, U.; Lanaras, Ch.; Baltsavias, E.; Cho, K.; Remondino, F.; Wakabayashi, H.

    2014-09-01

    In this study, we present first results of RAPIDMAP, a project funded by European Union in a framework aiming to foster the cooperation of European countries with Japan in R&D. The main objective of RAPIDMAP is to construct a Decision Support System (DSS) based on remote sensing data and WebGIS technologies, where users can easily access real-time information assisting with disaster analysis. In this paper, we present a case study of the Tohoku Tsunami Disaster 2011. We address two approaches namely change detection based on SAR data and co-registration of optical and SAR satellite images. With respect to SAR data, our efforts are subdivided into three parts: (1) initial coarse change detection for entire area, (2) flood area detection, and (3) linearfeature change detection. The investigations are based on pre- and post-event TerraSAR-X images. In (1), two pre- and post-event TerraSAR-X images are accurately co-registered and radiometrically calibrated. Data are fused in a false-color image that provides a quick and rough overview of potential changes, which is useful for initial decision making and identifying areas worthwhile to be analysed further in more depth. However, a bunch of inevitable false alarms appear within the scene caused by speckle, temporal decorrelation, co-registration inaccuracy and so on. In (2), the post-event TerraSAR-X data are used to extract the flood area by using thresholding and morphological approaches. The validated result indicates that using SAR data combining with suitable morphological approaches is a quick and effective way to detect flood area. Except for usage of SAR data, the false-color image composed of optical images are also used to detect flood area for further exploration in this part. In (3), Curvelet filtering is applied in the difference image of pre- and post-event TerraSAR-X images not only to suppress false alarms of irregular-features, but also to enhance the change signals of linear-features (e.g. buildings) in settlements. Afterwards, thresholding is exploited to extract the linear-feature changes. In rapid mapping of disasters various sensors are often employed, including optical and SAR, since they provide complementary information. Such data needs to be analyzed in an integrated fashion and the results from each dataset should be integrated in a GIS with a common coordinate reference system. Thus, if no orthoimages can be generated, the images should be co-registered employing matching of common features. We present results of co-registration between optical (FORMOSAT-2) and TerraSAR-X images based on different matching methods, and also techniques for detecting and eliminating matching errors.

  6. A meta-analysis of risk factors for depression in adults and children after natural disasters

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A number of studies have shown a range of negative psychological symptoms (e.g. depression) after exposure to natural disasters. The aim of this study was to determine risk factors for depression in both children and adults who have survived natural disasters. Methods Four electronic databases (PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, and PsychInfo) were used to search for observational studies (case–control, cross-sectional, and cohort studies) about depression following natural disasters. The literature search, study selection, and data extraction were conducted independently by two authors. Thirty-one articles were included in the study, of which twenty included adult participants and eleven included child participants. Summary estimates were obtained using random-effects models. Subgroup analysis, sensitivity analysis, and publication bias tests were performed on the data. Results The prevalence of depression after natural disasters ranged from 5.8% to 54.0% in adults and from 7.5% to 44.8% in children. We found a number of risk factors for depression after exposure to natural disasters. For adults, the significant predictors were being female ;not married;holding religious beliefs; having poor education; prior trauma; experiencing fear, injury, or bereavement during the disaster; or losing employment or property, suffering house damage as a result of the disaster. For children, the significant predictors were prior trauma; being trapped during the disaster; experiencing injury, fear, or bereavement during the disaster; witnessing injury/death during the disaster; or having poor social support. Conclusions The current analysis provides evidence of risk factors for depression in survivors of natural disasters. Further research is necessary to design interventions to improve the mental health of survivors of natural disasters. PMID:24941890

  7. Temporary disaster debris management site identification using binomial cluster analysis and GIS.

    PubMed

    Grzeda, Stanislaw; Mazzuchi, Thomas A; Sarkani, Shahram

    2014-04-01

    An essential component of disaster planning and preparation is the identification and selection of temporary disaster debris management sites (DMS). However, since DMS identification is a complex process involving numerous variable constraints, many regional, county and municipal jurisdictions initiate this process during the post-disaster response and recovery phases, typically a period of severely stressed resources. Hence, a pre-disaster approach in identifying the most likely sites based on the number of locational constraints would significantly contribute to disaster debris management planning. As disasters vary in their nature, location and extent, an effective approach must facilitate scalability, flexibility and adaptability to variable local requirements, while also being generalisable to other regions and geographical extents. This study demonstrates the use of binomial cluster analysis in potential DMS identification in a case study conducted in Hamilton County, Indiana. PMID:24601923

  8. Analytical and Radiochemistry for Nuclear Forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Steiner, Robert Ernest; Dry, Donald E.; Kinman, William Scott; Podlesak, David; Tandon, Lav

    2015-05-26

    Information about nonproliferation nuclear forensics, activities in forensics at Los Alamos National Laboratory, radio analytical work at LANL, radiochemical characterization capabilities, bulk chemical and materials analysis capabilities, and future interests in forensics interactions.

  9. [Fatal skiing accidents: a forensic analysis taking the example of Salzburg].

    PubMed

    Kunz, Sebastian N; Keller, Thomas; Grove, Christina; Lochner, Stefanie; Monticelli, Fabio

    2015-01-01

    The rising popularity of Alpine skiing in recent years has led to an increase of skiing accidents, some with fatal outcome. In this paper, all fatal skiing accidents from the autopsy material of the Institute of Forensic Medicine of the Paris Lodron University Salzburg were evaluated and compared with statistical data of the Alpine Police. In the wintertime of 2005/2006 until 2013/2014, 22 deadly skiing accidents were autopsied. The age of the male and female victims ranged between 12 and 71 years. The main cause of death was craniocerebral and chest trauma. A relevant blood alcohol concentration was detected in only one case. Together with trauma-biomechanical and technical experts, forensic medicine serves as a necessary clarification interface between the investigating authorities and the judiciary. Determining the cause and manner of death as well as reconstructing the accident is the main task of the forensic pathologist. The present study shows that in the county of Salzburg, only a small percentage of fatal skiing accidents is evaluated from a forensic and trauma-biomechanical point of view. Thus the possibilities of an interdisciplinary accident analysis are not always fully utilized. PMID:26419087

  10. Forensic Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brettell, T. A.; Saferstein, R.

    1989-01-01

    Presents a review of articles appealing to forensic practitioners. Topics include: drugs and poisons, forensic biochemistry, and trace evidence. Lists noteworthy books published on forensic science topics since 1986. (MVL)

  11. Signature Based Detection of User Events for Post-mortem Forensic Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    James, Joshua Isaac; Gladyshev, Pavel; Zhu, Yuandong

    This paper introduces a novel approach to user event reconstruction by showing the practicality of generating and implementing signature-based analysis methods to reconstruct high-level user actions from a collection of low-level traces found during a post-mortem forensic analysis of a system. Traditional forensic analysis and the inferences an investigator normally makes when given digital evidence, are examined. It is then demonstrated that this natural process of inferring high-level events from low-level traces may be encoded using signature-matching techniques. Simple signatures using the defined method are created and applied for three popular Windows-based programs as a proof of concept.

  12. Chemical Differentiation of Osseous, Dental, and Non-skeletal Materials in Forensic Anthropology using Elemental Analysis.

    PubMed

    Zimmerman, Heather A; Meizel-Lambert, Cayli J; Schultz, John J; Sigman, Michael E

    2015-03-01

    Forensic anthropologists are generally able to identify skeletal materials (bone and tooth) using gross anatomical features; however, highly fragmented or taphonomically altered materials may be problematic to identify. Several chemical analysis techniques have been shown to be reliable laboratory methods that can be used to determine if questionable fragments are osseous, dental, or non-skeletal in nature. The purpose of this review is to provide a detailed background of chemical analysis techniques focusing on elemental compositions that have been assessed for use in differentiating osseous, dental, and non-skeletal materials. More recently, chemical analysis studies have also focused on using the elemental composition of osseous/dental materials to evaluate species and provide individual discrimination, but have generally been successful only in small, closed groups, limiting their use forensically. Despite significant advances incorporating a variety of instruments, including handheld devices, further research is necessary to address issues in standardization, error rates, and sample size/diversity. PMID:25753999

  13. Developing an open geographic data model and analysis tools for disaster management: landslide case

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aydinoglu, A. C.; Bilgin, M. S.

    2015-02-01

    Disaster management aims to reduce catastrophic losses of disasters. Geographic information technologies support disaster management activities for effective and collaborative data management considering the complex nature of disasters. This study with an original conceptual approach aims to develop interoperable geographic data model and analysis tools to manage geographic data sets coming from different sources. For landslide disaster, 39 scenario-based activities were analysed with the required data according to user needs in a cycle of activities at mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery phases. An interoperable geographic data model for disaster management (ADYS), enabling up-to-date exchange of geographic data, was designed, compliant with the standards of ISO/TC211 Geographic Information/Geomatics, Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC), and the Turkish National GIS (TUCBS). An open source and free analysis toolbox was developed and tested in the case study of activities such as landslide hazard analysis and a disaster warning system to support the Provincial Disaster Management Centres of Turkey. Open data models and analysis tools make effective activity management and data sharing possible. However, transforming data sets into data exchange formats is laborious.

  14. The Kaprun cable car fire disaster--aspects of forensic organisation following a mass fatality with 155 victims.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Harald J

    2003-12-17

    In November 2000, a tunnel-bound cable car in Kaprun caught fire, with the subsequent death of 155 persons. No passenger list was in existence and bodies were burnt to such an extent that morphological identification was not feasible. A full post-mortem examination was performed on all bodies. All bodies were positively identified within 19 days after the incident by DNA analysis. Cause of death was determined to be carbon monoxide poisoning in combination with suffocation due to inhalation of smoke. The organisational aspects of processing are portrayed. PMID:14642713

  15. The Gender Analysis Tools Applied in Natural Disasters Management: A Systematic Literature Review

    PubMed Central

    Sohrabizadeh, Sanaz; Tourani, Sogand; Khankeh, Hamid Reza

    2014-01-01

    Background: Although natural disasters have caused considerable damages around the world, and gender analysis can improve community disaster preparedness or mitigation, there is little research about the gendered analytical tools and methods in communities exposed to natural disasters and hazards. These tools evaluate gender vulnerability and capacity in pre-disaster and post-disaster phases of the disaster management cycle. Objectives: Identifying the analytical gender tools and the strengths and limitations of them as well as determining gender analysis studies which had emphasized on the importance of using gender analysis in disasters. Methods: The literature search was conducted in June 2013 using PubMed, Web of Sciences, ProQuest Research Library, World Health Organization Library, Gender and Disaster Network (GDN) archive. All articles, guidelines, fact sheets and other materials that provided an analytical framework for a gender analysis approach in disasters were included and the non-English documents as well as gender studies of non-disasters area were excluded. Analysis of the included studies was done separately by descriptive and thematic analyses. Results: A total of 207 documents were retrieved, of which only nine references were included. Of these, 45% were in form of checklist, 33% case study report, and the remaining 22% were article. All selected papers were published within the period 1994-2012. Conclusions: A focus on women’s vulnerability in the related research and the lack of valid and reliable gender analysis tools were considerable issues identified by the literature review. Although non-English literatures with English abstract were included in the study, the possible exclusion of non-English ones was found as the limitation of this study. PMID:24678441

  16. Soil examination for a forensic trace evidence laboratory - Part 2: Elemental analysis.

    PubMed

    Woods, Brenda; Paul Kirkbride, K; Lennard, Chris; Robertson, James

    2014-10-14

    Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF) and scanning electron microscopy/energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDX) are compared in terms of their discrimination power when applied to Australian soil specimens. SEM/EDX and XRF are frequently used in forensic laboratories for the elemental analysis of paint and glass, and for miscellaneous examinations. LIBS is an emerging technique for forensic applications, with a number of researchers promoting its use for the elemental profiling of glass fragments. In this study, 29 soil specimens were analysed, with 12 specimens coming from the Canberra area and the remaining 17 specimens from other sites around Australia. As very good discrimination results were obtained for each of the analytical methods, any of these elemental analysis techniques, available in a trace evidence laboratory, could be used as part of a wider examination protocol to differentiate soil specimens. PMID:25459270

  17. Nuclear forensic analysis of uranium oxide powders interdicted in Victoria, Australia

    SciTech Connect

    Kristo, Michael Joseph; Keegan, Elizabeth; Colella, Michael; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; Plaue, Jonathan; Knight, Kim; Loi, Elaine; Hotchkis, Michael; Moody, Kenton; Singleton, Michael; Robel, Martin; Hutcheon, Ian

    2015-04-13

    Abstract

    Nuclear forensic analysis was conducted on two uranium samples confiscated during a police investigation in Victoria, Australia. The first sample, designated NSR-F-270409-1, was a depleted uranium powder of moderate purity (∼ 1000 μg/g total elemental impurities). The chemical form of the uranium was a compound similar to K

  18. Forensic trace DNA: a review

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    DNA analysis is frequently used to acquire information from biological material to aid enquiries associated with criminal offences, disaster victim identification and missing persons investigations. As the relevance and value of DNA profiling to forensic investigations has increased, so too has the desire to generate this information from smaller amounts of DNA. Trace DNA samples may be defined as any sample which falls below recommended thresholds at any stage of the analysis, from sample detection through to profile interpretation, and can not be defined by a precise picogram amount. Here we review aspects associated with the collection, DNA extraction, amplification, profiling and interpretation of trace DNA samples. Contamination and transfer issues are also briefly discussed within the context of trace DNA analysis. Whilst several methodological changes have facilitated profiling from trace samples in recent years it is also clear that many opportunities exist for further improvements. PMID:21122102

  19. Identifying 1st instar larvae for three forensically important blowfly species using "fingerprint" cuticular hydrocarbon analysis.

    PubMed

    Moore, Hannah E; Adam, Craig D; Drijfhout, Falko P

    2014-07-01

    Calliphoridae are known to be the most forensically important insects when it comes to establishing the minimum post mortem interval (PMImin) in criminal investigations. The first step in calculating the PMImin is to identify the larvae present to species level. Accurate identification which is conventionally carried out by morphological analysis is crucial because different insects have different life stage timings. Rapid identification in the immature larvae stages would drastically cut time in criminal investigations as it would eliminate the need to rear larvae to adult flies to determine the species. Cuticular hydrocarbon analysis on 1st instar larvae has been applied to three forensically important blowflies; Lucilia sericata, Calliphora vicina and Calliphora vomitoria, using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and principal component analysis (PCA). The results show that each species holds a distinct "fingerprint" hydrocarbon profile, allowing for accurate identification to be established in 1-day old larvae, when it can be challenging to apply morphological criteria. Consequently, this GC-MS based technique could accelerate and strengthen the identification process, not only for forensically important species, but also for other entomological samples which are hard to identify using morphological features. PMID:24815992

  20. Nuclear Forensics: Scientific Analysis Supporting Law Enforcement and Nuclear Security Investigations.

    PubMed

    Keegan, Elizabeth; Kristo, Michael J; Toole, Kaitlyn; Kips, Ruth; Young, Emma

    2016-02-01

    Nuclear forensic science, or "nuclear forensic", aims to answer questions about nuclear material found outside of regulatory control. In this Feature, we provide a general overview of nuclear forensics, selecting examples of key "nuclear forensic signatures" which have allowed investigators to determine the identity of unknown nuclear material in real investigations. PMID:26703823

  1. Forensic odontology: a global activity.

    PubMed

    Gould, George A

    2004-05-01

    Forensic odontology is an important and expanding field of dentistry. The application of these forensic techniques in identification, criminal justice and dental liability are being practiced worldwide. In some mass disaster events, notably large commercial aircraft crashes, the traumatic forces are such that fragmentation and conflagration result in only the most durable of human tissues-dentition survive and become a potential source of identification. PMID:15253463

  2. Analysis of media agenda setting during and after Hurricane Katrina: implications for emergency preparedness, disaster response, and disaster policy.

    PubMed

    Barnes, Michael D; Hanson, Carl L; Novilla, Len M B; Meacham, Aaron T; McIntyre, Emily; Erickson, Brittany C

    2008-04-01

    Media agenda setting refers to the deliberate coverage of topics or events with the goal of influencing public opinion and public policy. We conducted a quantitative content analysis of 4 prominent newspapers to examine how the media gathered and distributed news to shape public policy priorities during Hurricane Katrina. The media framed most Hurricane Katrina stories by emphasizing government response and less often addressing individuals' and communities' level of preparedness or responsibility. Hence, more articles covered response and recovery than mitigation and preparation. The newspapers studied focused significantly more on government response than on key public health roles in disaster management. We discuss specific implications for public health professionals, policymakers, and mass media so that, in the future, coordination can be enhanced among these entities before, during, and after disasters occur. PMID:18309133

  3. Analysis of Media Agenda Setting During and After Hurricane Katrina: Implications for Emergency Preparedness, Disaster Response, and Disaster Policy

    PubMed Central

    Barnes, Michael D.; Hanson, Carl L.; Novilla, Len M. B.; Meacham, Aaron T.; McIntyre, Emily; Erickson, Brittany C.

    2008-01-01

    Media agenda setting refers to the deliberate coverage of topics or events with the goal of influencing public opinion and public policy. We conducted a quantitative content analysis of 4 prominent newspapers to examine how the media gathered and distributed news to shape public policy priorities during Hurricane Katrina. The media framed most Hurricane Katrina stories by emphasizing government response and less often addressing individuals’ and communities’ level of preparedness or responsibility. Hence, more articles covered response and recovery than mitigation and preparation. The newspapers studied focused significantly more on government response than on key public health roles in disaster management. We discuss specific implications for public health professionals, policymakers, and mass media so that, in the future, coordination can be enhanced among these entities before, during, and after disasters occur. PMID:18309133

  4. Disaster medicine: genealogy of a concept.

    PubMed

    Stehrenberger, Ccile Stephanie; Goltermann, Svenja

    2014-11-01

    This paper evaluates disaster medicine from a historical perspective that facilitates the understanding of its present. Today, disaster medicine and humanitarian medicine are inextricably linked and the terms are sometimes used synonymously. An in-depth analysis of an extensive body of concrete empirical cases from various sources (i.e. archival records) reveals, however, that they have not always been the same. A genealogical, history-of-knowledge approach demonstrates that the concept of disaster medicine emerged in the early 20th century in Switzerland in the context of industrialization. Even though it gained important impetus during the First World War, the concept was informed by the experiences of forensic physicians in technological disasters such as mining explosions. The Cold War constituted the historical constellation in which disaster medicine was developed in West Germany during the 1960s and 1970s in a way that was paradigmatic for other Western European countries. At the same time, it was contested there in an unusual, historically unique way. Although focusing on a Western European context, this paper explores how medical interventions in disasters were international events and how the practice of disaster medicine was developed and "trained" through being applied in the Global South. It demonstrates the historicity of disaster medicine's political character and of the controversies generated by its involvement in civil and military operations. Throughout the 20th century, the political nature and military involvement of disaster medicine resulted in a number of ethical and practical issues, which are similar to the challenges facing humanitarian medicine today. The exploration of disaster medicine's past can therefore open up critical interventions in humanitarian medicine's present. PMID:24862174

  5. Analysis of cases of forensic veterinary opinions produced in a research and teaching unit.

    PubMed

    Listos, Piotr; Gryzinska, Magdalena; Kowalczyk, Marek

    2015-11-01

    The aim of the study was to present the results of necropsies carried out in the years 2000-2014 in the Department of Pathological Anatomy, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Life Sciences in Lublin. The material used for the analysis consisted of expert opinions prepared on the basis of a decision by a judicial body to admit an expert opinion as evidence. An increase was observed in the demand for the services of veterinary forensic experts, beginning in 2006 and persisting through 2014. The response to the growing popularity of veterinary forensic examinations should be systematization of knowledge and exchange of experience, which would enable the further development of this interdisciplinary science. PMID:26408394

  6. Whole-Genome Sequencing in Microbial Forensic Analysis of Gamma-Irradiated Microbial Materials.

    PubMed

    Broomall, Stacey M; Ait Ichou, Mohamed; Krepps, Michael D; Johnsky, Lauren A; Karavis, Mark A; Hubbard, Kyle S; Insalaco, Joseph M; Betters, Janet L; Redmond, Brady W; Rivers, Bryan A; Liem, Alvin T; Hill, Jessica M; Fochler, Edward T; Roth, Pierce A; Rosenzweig, C Nicole; Skowronski, Evan W; Gibbons, Henry S

    2015-01-01

    Effective microbial forensic analysis of materials used in a potential biological attack requires robust methods of morphological and genetic characterization of the attack materials in order to enable the attribution of the materials to potential sources and to exclude other potential sources. The genetic homogeneity and potential intersample variability of many of the category A to C bioterrorism agents offer a particular challenge to the generation of attributive signatures, potentially requiring whole-genome or proteomic approaches to be utilized. Currently, irradiation of mail is standard practice at several government facilities judged to be at particularly high risk. Thus, initial forensic signatures would need to be recovered from inactivated (nonviable) material. In the study described in this report, we determined the effects of high-dose gamma irradiation on forensic markers of bacterial biothreat agent surrogate organisms with a particular emphasis on the suitability of genomic DNA (gDNA) recovered from such sources as a template for whole-genome analysis. While irradiation of spores and vegetative cells affected the retention of Gram and spore stains and sheared gDNA into small fragments, we found that irradiated material could be utilized to generate accurate whole-genome sequence data on the Illumina and Roche 454 sequencing platforms. PMID:26567301

  7. Monte Carlo analysis of thermochromatography as a fast separation method for nuclear forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, Howard L

    2012-01-01

    Nuclear forensic science has become increasingly important for global nuclear security, and enhancing the timeliness of forensic analysis has been established as an important objective in the field. New, faster techniques must be developed to meet this objective. Current approaches for the analysis of minor actinides, fission products, and fuel-specific materials require time-consuming chemical separation coupled with measurement through either nuclear counting or mass spectrometry. These very sensitive measurement techniques can be hindered by impurities or incomplete separation in even the most painstaking chemical separations. High-temperature gas-phase separation or thermochromatography has been used in the past for the rapid separations in the study of newly created elements and as a basis for chemical classification of that element. This work examines the potential for rapid separation of gaseous species to be applied in nuclear forensic investigations. Monte Carlo modeling has been used to evaluate the potential utility of the thermochromatographic separation method, albeit this assessment is necessarily limited due to the lack of available experimental data for validation.

  8. Parallel digital forensics infrastructure.

    SciTech Connect

    Liebrock, Lorie M.; Duggan, David Patrick

    2009-10-01

    This report documents the architecture and implementation of a Parallel Digital Forensics infrastructure. This infrastructure is necessary for supporting the design, implementation, and testing of new classes of parallel digital forensics tools. Digital Forensics has become extremely difficult with data sets of one terabyte and larger. The only way to overcome the processing time of these large sets is to identify and develop new parallel algorithms for performing the analysis. To support algorithm research, a flexible base infrastructure is required. A candidate architecture for this base infrastructure was designed, instantiated, and tested by this project, in collaboration with New Mexico Tech. Previous infrastructures were not designed and built specifically for the development and testing of parallel algorithms. With the size of forensics data sets only expected to increase significantly, this type of infrastructure support is necessary for continued research in parallel digital forensics. This report documents the implementation of the parallel digital forensics (PDF) infrastructure architecture and implementation.

  9. Comparative analysis of LWR and FBR spent fuels for nuclear forensics evaluation

    SciTech Connect

    Permana, Sidik; Suzuki, Mitsutoshi; Su'ud, Zaki

    2012-06-06

    Some interesting issues are attributed to nuclide compositions of spent fuels from thermal reactors as well as fast reactors such as a potential to reuse as recycled fuel, and a possible capability to be manage as a fuel for destructive devices. In addition, analysis on nuclear forensics which is related to spent fuel compositions becomes one of the interesting topics to evaluate the origin and the composition of spent fuels from the spent fuel foot-prints. Spent fuel compositions of different fuel types give some typical spent fuel foot prints and can be estimated the origin of source of those spent fuel compositions. Some technics or methods have been developing based on some science and technological capability including experimental and modeling or theoretical aspects of analyses. Some foot-print of nuclear forensics will identify the typical information of spent fuel compositions such as enrichment information, burnup or irradiation time, reactor types as well as the cooling time which is related to the age of spent fuels. This paper intends to evaluate the typical spent fuel compositions of light water (LWR) and fast breeder reactors (FBR) from the view point of some foot prints of nuclear forensics. An established depletion code of ORIGEN is adopted to analyze LWR spent fuel (SF) for several burnup constants and decay times. For analyzing some spent fuel compositions of FBR, some coupling codes such as SLAROM code, JOINT and CITATION codes including JFS-3-J-3.2R as nuclear data library have been adopted. Enriched U-235 fuel composition of oxide type is used for fresh fuel of LWR and a mixed oxide fuel (MOX) for FBR fresh fuel. Those MOX fuels of FBR come from the spent fuels of LWR. Some typical spent fuels from both LWR and FBR will be compared to distinguish some typical foot-prints of SF based on nuclear forensic analysis.

  10. Comparative analysis of LWR and FBR spent fuels for nuclear forensics evaluation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Permana, Sidik; Suzuki, Mitsutoshi; Su'ud, Zaki

    2012-06-01

    Some interesting issues are attributed to nuclide compositions of spent fuels from thermal reactors as well as fast reactors such as a potential to reuse as recycled fuel, and a possible capability to be manage as a fuel for destructive devices. In addition, analysis on nuclear forensics which is related to spent fuel compositions becomes one of the interesting topics to evaluate the origin and the composition of spent fuels from the spent fuel foot-prints. Spent fuel compositions of different fuel types give some typical spent fuel foot prints and can be estimated the origin of source of those spent fuel compositions. Some technics or methods have been developing based on some science and technological capability including experimental and modeling or theoretical aspects of analyses. Some foot-print of nuclear forensics will identify the typical information of spent fuel compositions such as enrichment information, burnup or irradiation time, reactor types as well as the cooling time which is related to the age of spent fuels. This paper intends to evaluate the typical spent fuel compositions of light water (LWR) and fast breeder reactors (FBR) from the view point of some foot prints of nuclear forensics. An established depletion code of ORIGEN is adopted to analyze LWR spent fuel (SF) for several burnup constants and decay times. For analyzing some spent fuel compositions of FBR, some coupling codes such as SLAROM code, JOINT and CITATION codes including JFS-3-J-3.2R as nuclear data library have been adopted. Enriched U-235 fuel composition of oxide type is used for fresh fuel of LWR and a mixed oxide fuel (MOX) for FBR fresh fuel. Those MOX fuels of FBR come from the spent fuels of LWR. Some typical spent fuels from both LWR and FBR will be compared to distinguish some typical foot-prints of SF based on nuclear forensic analysis.

  11. Validation of a framework for measuring hospital disaster resilience using factor analysis.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Shuang; Clark, Michele; Hou, Xiang-Yu; Zang, Yuli; FitzGerald, Gerard

    2014-06-01

    Hospital disaster resilience can be defined as "the ability of hospitals to resist, absorb, and respond to the shock of disasters while maintaining and surging essential health services, and then to recover to its original state or adapt to a new one." This article aims to provide a framework which can be used to comprehensively measure hospital disaster resilience. An evaluation framework for assessing hospital resilience was initially proposed through a systematic literature review and Modified-Delphi consultation. Eight key domains were identified: hospital safety, command, communication and cooperation system, disaster plan, resource stockpile, staff capability, disaster training and drills, emergency services and surge capability, and recovery and adaptation. The data for this study were collected from 41 tertiary hospitals in Shandong Province in China, using a specially designed questionnaire. Factor analysis was conducted to determine the underpinning structure of the framework. It identified a four-factor structure of hospital resilience, namely, emergency medical response capability (F1), disaster management mechanisms (F2), hospital infrastructural safety (F3), and disaster resources (F4). These factors displayed good internal consistency. The overall level of hospital disaster resilience (F) was calculated using the scoring model: F = 0.615F1 + 0.202F2 + 0.103F3 + 0.080F4. This validated framework provides a new way to operationalise the concept of hospital resilience, and it is also a foundation for the further development of the measurement instrument in future studies. PMID:24945190

  12. Validation of a Framework for Measuring Hospital Disaster Resilience Using Factor Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Zhong, Shuang; Clark, Michele; Hou, Xiang-Yu; Zang, Yuli; FitzGerald, Gerard

    2014-01-01

    Hospital disaster resilience can be defined as “the ability of hospitals to resist, absorb, and respond to the shock of disasters while maintaining and surging essential health services, and then to recover to its original state or adapt to a new one.” This article aims to provide a framework which can be used to comprehensively measure hospital disaster resilience. An evaluation framework for assessing hospital resilience was initially proposed through a systematic literature review and Modified-Delphi consultation. Eight key domains were identified: hospital safety, command, communication and cooperation system, disaster plan, resource stockpile, staff capability, disaster training and drills, emergency services and surge capability, and recovery and adaptation. The data for this study were collected from 41 tertiary hospitals in Shandong Province in China, using a specially designed questionnaire. Factor analysis was conducted to determine the underpinning structure of the framework. It identified a four-factor structure of hospital resilience, namely, emergency medical response capability (F1), disaster management mechanisms (F2), hospital infrastructural safety (F3), and disaster resources (F4). These factors displayed good internal consistency. The overall level of hospital disaster resilience (F) was calculated using the scoring model: F = 0.615F1 + 0.202F2 + 0.103F3 + 0.080F4. This validated framework provides a new way to operationalise the concept of hospital resilience, and it is also a foundation for the further development of the measurement instrument in future studies. PMID:24945190

  13. Sex determination in forensic odontology: A review

    PubMed Central

    Ramakrishnan, K.; Sharma, Subramanya; Sreeja, C.; Pratima, D. Bhavani; Aesha, I.; Vijayabanu, B.

    2015-01-01

    Forensic odontology is the application of dental principles to legal issues. Sex determination is a subdivision of forensic odontology and it is very important especially when information relating to the deceased is unavailable. Sex determination becomes the first priority in the process of identification of a person by a forensic investigator in the case of mishaps, chemical and nuclear bomb explosions, natural disasters crime investigations, and ethnic studies. This article reviews upon the various methods used in sex determination. PMID:26538886

  14. Sex determination in forensic odontology: A review.

    PubMed

    Ramakrishnan, K; Sharma, Subramanya; Sreeja, C; Pratima, D Bhavani; Aesha, I; Vijayabanu, B

    2015-08-01

    Forensic odontology is the application of dental principles to legal issues. Sex determination is a subdivision of forensic odontology and it is very important especially when information relating to the deceased is unavailable. Sex determination becomes the first priority in the process of identification of a person by a forensic investigator in the case of mishaps, chemical and nuclear bomb explosions, natural disasters crime investigations, and ethnic studies. This article reviews upon the various methods used in sex determination. PMID:26538886

  15. Forensic radiology in dentistry

    PubMed Central

    Manigandan, T.; Sumathy, C.; Elumalai, M.; Sathasivasubramanian, S.; Kannan, A.

    2015-01-01

    Radiography can play an important part in forensic odontology, mainly to establish identification. This may take the precise form of comparison between antemortem and postmortem radiographs. Radiographs may also be taken to determine the age of a minor victim and even help in the assessment of the sex and ethnic group. Comparable radiographs are an essential factor to confirm identification in a mass disaster. PMID:26015728

  16. Forensic radiology in dentistry.

    PubMed

    Manigandan, T; Sumathy, C; Elumalai, M; Sathasivasubramanian, S; Kannan, A

    2015-04-01

    Radiography can play an important part in forensic odontology, mainly to establish identification. This may take the precise form of comparison between antemortem and postmortem radiographs. Radiographs may also be taken to determine the age of a minor victim and even help in the assessment of the sex and ethnic group. Comparable radiographs are an essential factor to confirm identification in a mass disaster. PMID:26015728

  17. Opportunities for Fluid Dynamics Research in the Forensic Discipline of Bloodstain Pattern Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Attinger, Daniel; Moore, Craig; Donaldson, Adam; Jafari, Arian; Stone, Howard

    2013-11-01

    This review [Forensic Science International, vol. 231, pp. 375-396, 2013] highlights research opportunities for fluid dynamics (FD) studies related to the forensic discipline of bloodstain pattern analysis (BPA). The need for better integrating FD and BPA is mentioned in a 2009 report by the US National Research Council, entitled ``Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward''. BPA aims for practical answers to specific questions of the kind: ``How did a bloodletting incident happen?'' FD, on the other hand, aims to quantitatively describe the transport of fluids and the related causes, with general equations. BPA typically solves the indirect problem of inspecting stains in a crime scene to infer the most probable bloodletting incident that produced these patterns. FD typically defines the initial and boundary conditions of a fluid system and from there describe how the system evolves in time and space, most often in a deterministic manner. We review four topics in BPA with strong connections to FD: the generation of drops, their flight, their impact and the formation of stains. Future research on these topics would deliver new quantitative tools and methods for BPA, and present new multiphase flow problems for FD.

  18. Climate Change, Disaster and Sentiment Analysis over Social Media Mining

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, J.; McCusker, J. P.; McGuinness, D. L.

    2012-12-01

    Accelerated climate change causes disasters and disrupts people living all over the globe. Disruptive climate events are often reflected in expressed sentiments of the people affected. Monitoring changes in these sentiments during and after disasters can reveal relationships between climate change and mental health. We developed a semantic web tool that uses linked data principles and semantic web technologies to integrate data from multiple sources and analyze them together. We are converting statistical data on climate change and disaster records obtained from the World Bank data catalog and the International Disaster Database into a Resource Description Framework (RDF) representation that was annotated with the RDF Data Cube vocabulary. We compare these data with a dataset of tweets that mention terms from the Emotion Ontology to get a sense of how disasters can impact the affected populations. This dataset is being gathered using an infrastructure we developed that extracts term uses in Twitter with controlled vocabularies. This data was also converted to RDF structure so that statistical data on the climate change and disasters is analyzed together with sentiment data. To visualize and explore relationship of the multiple data across the dimensions of time and location, we use the qb.js framework. We are using this approach to investigate the social and emotional impact of climate change. We hope that this will demonstrate the use of social media data as a valuable source of understanding on global climate change.

  19. Enhanced genetic analysis of single human bioparticles recovered by simplified micromanipulation from forensic 'touch DNA' evidence.

    PubMed

    Farash, Katherine; Hanson, Erin K; Ballantyne, Jack

    2015-01-01

    DNA profiles can be obtained from 'touch DNA' evidence, which comprises microscopic traces of human biological material. Current methods for the recovery of trace DNA employ cotton swabs or adhesive tape to sample an area of interest. However, such a 'blind-swabbing' approach will co-sample cellular material from the different individuals, even if the individuals' cells are located in geographically distinct locations on the item. Thus, some of the DNA mixtures encountered in touch DNA samples are artificially created by the swabbing itself. In some instances, a victim's DNA may be found in significant excess thus masking any potential perpetrator's DNA. In order to circumvent the challenges with standard recovery and analysis methods, we have developed a lower cost, 'smart analysis' method that results in enhanced genetic analysis of touch DNA evidence. We describe an optimized and efficient micromanipulation recovery strategy for the collection of bio-particles present in touch DNA samples, as well as an enhanced amplification strategy involving a one-step 5 µl microvolume lysis/STR amplification to permit the recovery of STR profiles from the bio-particle donor(s). The use of individual or few (i.e., "clumps") bioparticles results in the ability to obtain single source profiles. These procedures represent alternative enhanced techniques for the isolation and analysis of single bioparticles from forensic touch DNA evidence. While not necessary in every forensic investigation, the method could be highly beneficial for the recovery of a single source perpetrator DNA profile in cases involving physical assault (e.g., strangulation) that may not be possible using standard analysis techniques. Additionally, the strategies developed here offer an opportunity to obtain genetic information at the single cell level from a variety of other non-forensic trace biological material. PMID:25867046

  20. Scenario-based impact analysis of disaster risks exploring potential implications for disaster prevention strategies in spatial and urban planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lüke, J.; Wenzel, F.; Vogt, J.

    2009-04-01

    The project deals with scenario techniques to assess, estimate, and communicate the potential consequences of natural disasters on risk governance arrangements. It aims to create a methodology which allows the development of disaster scenarios for different types of natural hazards. This enables relevant stakeholders to derive planning strategies to prevent harmful damage to the community through adequate adaptation. Some main questions in the project are: - How do changing boundary conditions in economic, social and ecological systems influence the significance and the benefit of existent risk analysis as a basis for spatial planning decisions? - Which factors represent or influence the forecast uncertainty of existent extrapolations within the scope of risk analysis? Which of these uncertainties have spatial relevance? (Which go beyond sectoral considerations of risk? Which refer to reservations concerning spatial development? Which influence a community as a whole?) - How can we quantify these uncertainties? Do they change according to altered hazards or vulnerabilities? - How does the explored risk vary, once quantified uncertainties are integrated into current extrapolations? What are the implications for spatial planning activities? - Which software application is suitable to visualize and communicate the scenario methodology? The work is mainly based on existing results of previous hazard analysis and vulnerability studies which have been carried out by the Center of Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) for the federal state of Baden-Württemberg. Existing data concern the risk of damages on residential buildings, industrial and traffic infrastructure, social and economic vulnerability. We will link this data with various assumptions of potentially changing economic, social and built environments and visualize those using Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Although the scenario methodology is conceived as a multi-hazard oriented and transferable instrument, it may be helpful to demonstrate the methodology for one hazard (e.g. flooding hazards) and with special local conditions in Baden-Württemberg.

  1. The return period analysis of natural disasters with statistical modeling of bivariate joint probability distribution.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Liu, Xueqin; Xie, Wei; Wu, Jidong; Zhang, Peng

    2013-01-01

    New features of natural disasters have been observed over the last several years. The factors that influence the disasters' formation mechanisms, regularity of occurrence and main characteristics have been revealed to be more complicated and diverse in nature than previously thought. As the uncertainty involved increases, the variables need to be examined further. This article discusses the importance and the shortage of multivariate analysis of natural disasters and presents a method to estimate the joint probability of the return periods and perform a risk analysis. Severe dust storms from 1990 to 2008 in Inner Mongolia were used as a case study to test this new methodology, as they are normal and recurring climatic phenomena on Earth. Based on the 79 investigated events and according to the dust storm definition with bivariate, the joint probability distribution of severe dust storms was established using the observed data of maximum wind speed and duration. The joint return periods of severe dust storms were calculated, and the relevant risk was analyzed according to the joint probability. The copula function is able to simulate severe dust storm disasters accurately. The joint return periods generated are closer to those observed in reality than the univariate return periods and thus have more value in severe dust storm disaster mitigation, strategy making, program design, and improvement of risk management. This research may prove useful in risk-based decision making. The exploration of multivariate analysis methods can also lay the foundation for further applications in natural disaster risk analysis. PMID:22616629

  2. Comparative evaluation of different extraction and quantification methods for forensic RNA analysis.

    PubMed

    Grabmller, Melanie; Madea, Burkhard; Courts, Cornelius

    2015-05-01

    Since about 2005, there is increasing interest in forensic RNA analysis whose versatility may very favorably complement traditional DNA profiling in forensic casework. There is, however, no method available specifically dedicated for extraction of RNA from forensically relevant sample material. In this study we compared five commercially available and commonly used RNA extraction kits and methods (mirVana miRNA Isolation Kit Ambion; Trizol Reagent, Invitrogen; NucleoSpin miRNA Kit Macherey-Nagel; AllPrep DNA/RNA Mini Kit and RNeasy Mini Kit both Qiagen) to assess their relative effectiveness of yielding RNA of good quality and their compatibility with co-extraction of DNA amenable to STR profiling. We set up samples of small amounts of dried blood, liquid saliva, semen and buccal mucosa that were aged for different time intervals for co-extraction of RNA and DNA. RNA quality was assessed by determination of 'RNA integrity number' (RIN) and quantitative PCR based expression analysis. DNA quality was assessed via monitoring STR typing success rates. By comparison, the different methods exhibited considerable differences between RNA and DNA yields, RNA quality values and expression levels, and STR profiling success, with the AllPrep DNA/RNA Mini Kit and the NucleoSpin miRNA Kit excelling at DNA co-extraction and RNA results, respectively. Overall, there was no 'best' method to satisfy all demands of comprehensible co-analysis of RNA and DNA and it appears that each method has specific merits and flaws. We recommend to cautiously choose from available methods and align its characteristics with the needs of the experimental setting at hand. PMID:25625965

  3. Advanced Signal Analysis for Forensic Applications of Ground Penetrating Radar

    SciTech Connect

    Steven Koppenjan; Matthew Streeton; Hua Lee; Michael Lee; Sashi Ono

    2004-06-01

    Ground penetrating radar (GPR) systems have traditionally been used to image subsurface objects. The main focus of this paper is to evaluate an advanced signal analysis technique. Instead of compiling spatial data for the analysis, this technique conducts object recognition procedures based on spectral statistics. The identification feature of an object type is formed from the training vectors by a singular-value decomposition procedure. To illustrate its capability, this procedure is applied to experimental data and compared to the performance of the neural-network approach.

  4. Discriminant Analysis of Raman Spectra for Body Fluid Identification for Forensic Purposes

    PubMed Central

    Sikirzhytski, Vitali; Virkler, Kelly; Lednev, Igor K.

    2010-01-01

    Detection and identification of blood, semen and saliva stains, the most common body fluids encountered at a crime scene, are very important aspects of forensic science today. This study targets the development of a nondestructive, confirmatory method for body fluid identification based on Raman spectroscopy coupled with advanced statistical analysis. Dry traces of blood, semen and saliva obtained from multiple donors were probed using a confocal Raman microscope with a 785-nm excitation wavelength under controlled laboratory conditions. Results demonstrated the capability of Raman spectroscopy to identify an unknown substance to be semen, blood or saliva with high confidence. PMID:22319277

  5. Forensic Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cobb, P. G. W.

    1973-01-01

    Summarizes the type of work carried out by forensic chemists and the minimum qualification needed for appointment. Indicates that there are eight Home Office regional forensic science laboratories in addition to the Central Research Establishment at Aldermaston. (CC)

  6. Forensics Investigator

    MedlinePlus

    ... Page Back to My Careers Find Other Careers Career Profiles Forensics Investigator Overview Description Forensic science technicians ... and other evidence collected at the crime scene. Career Outlook Given that society's problems with crime are ...

  7. Nuclear forensic analysis of uranium oxide powders interdicted in Victoria, Australia

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Kristo, Michael Joseph; Keegan, Elizabeth; Colella, Michael; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; Plaue, Jonathan; et al

    2015-04-13

    Nuclear forensic analysis was conducted on two uranium samples confiscated during a police investigation in Victoria, Australia. The first sample, designated NSR-F-270409-1, was a depleted uranium powder of moderate purity (~1000 μg/g total elemental impurities). The chemical form of the uranium was a compound similar to K2(UO2)3O4·4H2O. While aliquoting NSR-F-270409-1 for analysis, the body and head of a Tineid moth was discovered in the sample. The second sample, designated NSR-F-270409-2, was also a depleted uranium powder. It was of reasonably high purity (~380 μg/g total elemental impurities). The chemical form of the uranium was primarily UO3·2H2O, with minor phases ofmore » U3O8 and UO2. While aliquoting NSR-F-270409-2 for analysis, a metal staple of unknown origin was discovered in the sample. The presence of 236U and 232U in both samples indicates that the uranium feed stocks for these samples experienced a neutron flux at some point in their history. The reactor burn-up calculated from the isotopic composition of the uranium is consistent with that of spent fuel from natural uranium (NU) fueled Pu production. These nuclear forensic conclusions allow us to categorically exclude Australia as the origin of the material and greatly reduce the number of candidate sources.« less

  8. Some advances in Fourier transform infrared transflection analysis and potential applications in forensic chemistry.

    PubMed

    Koçak, A; Lucania, J P; Berets, S L

    2009-05-01

    The transflection technique offers significant potential for both qualitative and quantitative analysis in the mid-infrared region. The higher sensitivity for bands in the mid-infrared provides a distinct advantage over the lower absorbance values typically encountered in the near-infrared region. Other advantages, such as small sample size and little sample preparation, make this technique a good candidate for the analysis of forensic substances. Small amounts of illegal drugs such as cocaine can be reliably and nondestructively identified with little or no sample preparation. With the approach to transflection described in this paper, single grains can be quickly identified by simply placing the sample on a specially designed substrate and recording the Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectrum. Transflection was applied to the qualitative analysis of aqueous solutions and solid particles using relatively simple equipment in conjunction with a commercially available diffuse reflection accessory. Improvements in both equipment and technique are discussed. Extensions of the equipment into two new forms, with potential uses in proteomics and forensics, are introduced. PMID:19470206

  9. Iranian nurses’ experience of essential technical competences in disaster response: A qualitative content analysis study

    PubMed Central

    Aliakbari, Fatemeh; Bahrami, Masoud; Aein, Fereshteh; Khankeh, Hamidreza

    2014-01-01

    Background: Today disasters are a part of many people's lives. Iran has a long history of disaster events and nurses are one of the most significant groups within the Iranian disaster relief operations, providing immediate and long-term care for those affected by the disaster. However, the technical competence of Iranian nurses and their training for this work has received little attention. This article presents the results of a study that aims to explore this context. Materials and Methods: A qualitative study was conducted using in-depth interviews to collect data from 30 nurses, who were deliberately selected from the health centers affiliated to the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Themes were identified using the conventional qualitative content analysis. The trustworthiness of the study was supported by considering the auditability, neutrality, consistency, and transferability. The study lasted from 2011 to 2012. Results: Data analysis undertaken for the qualitative study resulted in the identification of five main themes, which included: (1) Management competences, (2) ethical and legal competences, (3) team working, and (4) personal abilities and the specific technical competences presented in this report. Conclusions: This report presents an overview of the nursing technical capabilities required for Iranian nurses during disaster relief. It is argued that additional competencies are required for nurses who care in high-risk situations, including disasters. Nurses need to prepare themselves more effectively to be responsible and effective in nursing care. PMID:25558255

  10. Differential Power Analysis as a digital forensic tool.

    PubMed

    Souvignet, T; Frinken, J

    2013-07-10

    Electronic payment fraud is considered a serious international crime by Europol. An important part of this fraud comes from payment card data skimming. This type of fraud consists of an illegal acquisition of payment card details when a user is withdrawing cash at an automated teller machine (ATM) or paying at a point of sale (POS). Modern skimming devices, also known as skimmers, use secure crypto-algorithms (e.g. Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)) to protect skimmed data stored within their memory. In order to provide digital evidence in criminal cases involving skimmers, law enforcement agencies (LEAs) must retrieve the plaintext skimmed data, generally without having knowledge of the secret key. This article proposes an alternative to the current solution at the Bundeskriminalamt (BKA) to reveal the secret key. The proposed solution is non-invasive, based on Power Analysis Attack (PAA). This article first describes the structure and the behaviour of an AES skimmer, followed by the proposal of the full operational PAA process, from power measurements to attack computation. Finally, it presents results obtained in several cases, explaining the latest improvements and providing some ideas for further developments. PMID:23623248

  11. Near-Real-Time Analysis of Publicly Communicated Disaster Response Information

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girard, Trevor

    2015-04-01

    During a disaster situation the public will need to make critical actions regarding what to do, where to go, how to get there, and so on. The more informed the public is, the better actions they are able to make, resulting in reduced disaster impacts. The criteria for what information to provide the public needs to change depending on the specific needs of the disaster affected population. The method of dissemination also needs to match the communication channels that the public typically uses in disaster situations. This research project investigates the dynamic information needs of disaster affected populations and how information leads to actions. The purpose of the research project is to identify key indicators for measuring how well informed the public is during disasters. The indicators are limited to those which can be observed as communication is happening (i.e., in near-real-time). By doing so, the indicators can be analyzed as disaster situations unfold, deficiencies can be identified, and recommendations can be made to potentially improve communication while the response is still underway. The end goal of the research is to improve the ability of communicators to inform disaster affected communities. A classification scheme has been developed to categorize the information provided to the public during disasters. Under each category is a set of typical questions that the information should answer. These questions are the result of a best observed practice review of the information available during 11 disasters. For example, under the category 'Life Saving Response', the questions which should be answered are who is doing what (Evacuation, SAR), where and when, and the amount of the affected communities' needs being covered by these actions. Review of what questions remain unanswered acts as the first indicator, referred to as an 'Information Gap Analysis'. Comparative analysis of the information within categories, between categories, and between similar disasters allows for further indicators to be observed in near-real-time. Other indicators include: timing of information provision; appropriate emphasis on most critical information; appropriate terminology; appropriate information medium; appropriate comparison to past events, and; guidance regarding what to do.

  12. Differentiation of five body fluids from forensic samples by expression analysis of four microRNAs using quantitative PCR.

    PubMed

    Sauer, Eva; Reinke, Ann-Kathrin; Courts, Cornelius

    2016-05-01

    Applying molecular genetic approaches for the identification of forensically relevant body fluids, which often yield crucial information for the reconstruction of a potential crime, is a current topic of forensic research. Due to their body fluid specific expression patterns and stability against degradation, microRNAs (miRNA) emerged as a promising molecular species, with a range of candidate markers published. The analysis of miRNA via quantitative Real-Time PCR, however, should be based on a relevant strategy of normalization of non-biological variances to deliver reliable and biologically meaningful results. The herein presented work is the as yet most comprehensive study of forensic body fluid identification via miRNA expression analysis based on a thoroughly validated qPCR procedure and unbiased statistical decision making to identify single source samples. PMID:26878708

  13. Real-Time Earthquake Analysis for Disaster Mitigation (READI) Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bock, Y.

    2014-12-01

    Real-time GNSS networks are making a significant impact on our ability to forecast, assess, and mitigate the effects of geological hazards. I describe the activities of the Real-time Earthquake Analysis for Disaster Mitigation (READI) working group. The group leverages 600+ real-time GPS stations in western North America operated by UNAVCO (PBO network), Central Washington University (PANGA), US Geological Survey & Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SCIGN project), UC Berkeley & US Geological Survey (BARD network), and the Pacific Geosciences Centre (WCDA project). Our goal is to demonstrate an earthquake and tsunami early warning system for western North America. Rapid response is particularly important for those coastal communities that are in the near-source region of large earthquakes and may have only minutes of warning time, and who today are not adequately covered by existing seismic and basin-wide ocean-buoy monitoring systems. The READI working group is performing comparisons of independent real time analyses of 1 Hz GPS data for station displacements and is participating in government-sponsored earthquake and tsunami exercises in the Western U.S. I describe a prototype seismogeodetic system using a cluster of southern California stations that includes GNSS tracking and collocation with MEMS accelerometers for real-time estimation of seismic velocity and displacement waveforms, which has advantages for improved earthquake early warning and tsunami forecasts compared to seismic-only or GPS-only methods. The READI working group's ultimate goal is to participate in an Indo-Pacific Tsunami early warning system that utilizes GNSS real-time displacements and ionospheric measurements along with seismic, near-shore buoys and ocean-bottom pressure sensors, where available, to rapidly estimate magnitude and finite fault slip models for large earthquakes, and then forecast tsunami source, energy scale, geographic extent, inundation and runup. This will require cooperation with other real-time efforts around the Pacific Rim in terms of sharing, analysis centers, and advisory bulletins to the responsible government agencies. The IAG's Global Geodetic Observing System (GGOS), in particular its natural hazards theme, provides a natural umbrella for achieving this objective.

  14. Population studies of 17 equine STR for forensic and phylogenetic analysis.

    PubMed

    van de Goor, L H P; van Haeringen, W A; Lenstra, J A

    2011-12-01

    As a consequence of the close integration of horses into human society, equine DNA analysis has become relevant for forensic purposes. However, the information content of the equine Short Tandem Repeat (STR) loci commonly used for the identification or paternity testing has so far not been fully characterized. Population studies were performed for 17 polymorphic STR loci (AHT4, AHT5, ASB2, ASB17, ASB23, CA425, HMS1, HMS2, HMS3, HMS6, HMS7, HTG4, HTG6, HTG7, HTG10, LEX3 and VHL20) including 8641 horses representing 35 populations. The power of parental exclusion, polymorphic information content, expected and observed heterozygosity and probability of identity were calculated, showing that the set of 17 STRs has sufficient discriminating power for forensic analysis in almost all breeds. We also explored the reliability of individual assignment tests in identifying the correct breeds of origin for unknown samples. The overall proportion of individuals correctly assigned to a population was 97.2%. Finally, we demonstrate the phylogenetic signal of the 17 STR. We found three clusters of related breeds: (i) the cold-blooded draught breeds Haflinger, Dutch draft and Friesian; (ii) the pony breeds Shetland and Miniature horse with the Falabella, Appaloosa and Icelandic; and (iii) The Warmblood riding breeds, together with the hot-blooded Standard-bred, Thoroughbred and Arabian. PMID:22035004

  15. Morphological, spectral and chromatography analysis and forensic comparison of PET fibers.

    PubMed

    Farah, Shady; Tsach, Tsadok; Bentolila, Alfonso; Domb, Abraham J

    2014-06-01

    Poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET) fiber analysis and comparison by spectral and polymer molecular weight determination was investigated. Plain fibers of PET, a common textile fiber and plastic material was chosen for this study. The fibers were analyzed for morphological (SEM and AFM), spectral (IR and NMR), thermal (DSC) and molecular weight (MS and GPC) differences. Molecular analysis of PET fibers by Gel Permeation Chromatography (GPC) allowed the comparison of fibers that could not be otherwise distinguished with high confidence. Plain PET fibers were dissolved in hexafluoroisopropanol (HFIP) and analyzed by GPC using hexafluoroisopropanol:chloroform 2:98 v/v as eluent. 14 PET fiber samples, collected from various commercial producers, were analyzed for polymer molecular weight by GPC. Distinct differences in the molecular weight of the different fiber samples were found which may have potential use in forensic fiber comparison. PET fibers with average molecular weights between about 20,000 and 70,000 g mol(-1) were determined using fiber concentrations in HFIP as low as 1 μg mL(-1). This GPC analytical method can be applied for exclusively distinguish between PET fibers using 1 μg of fiber. This method can be extended to forensic comparison of other synthetic fibers such as polyamides and acrylics. PMID:24725864

  16. Forensic Body Fluid Identification by Analysis of Multiple RNA Markers Using NanoString Technology

    PubMed Central

    Park, Jong-Lyul; Park, Seong-Min; Kim, Jeong-Hwan; Lee, Han-Chul; Lee, Seung-Hwan; Woo, Kwang-Man; Kim, Seon-Young

    2013-01-01

    RNA analysis has become a reliable method of body fluid identification for forensic use. Previously, we developed a combination of four multiplex quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) probes to discriminate four different body fluids (blood, semen, saliva, and vaginal secretion). While those makers successfully identified most body fluid samples, there were some cases of false positive and negative identification. To improve the accuracy of the identification further, we tried to use multiple markers per body fluid and adopted the NanoString nCounter system instead of a multiplex qRT-PCR system. After measuring tens of RNA markers, we evaluated the accuracy of each marker for body fluid identification. For body fluids, such as blood and semen, each body fluid-specific marker was accurate enough for perfect identification. However, for saliva and vaginal secretion, no single marker was perfect. Thus, we designed a logistic regression model with multiple markers for saliva and vaginal secretion and achieved almost perfect identification. In conclusion, the NanoString nCounter is an efficient platform for measuring multiple RNA markers per body fluid and will be useful for forensic RNA analysis. PMID:24465241

  17. Characterization and forensic analysis of soil samples using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS).

    PubMed

    Jantzi, Sarah C; Almirall, José R

    2011-07-01

    A method for the quantitative elemental analysis of surface soil samples using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) was developed and applied to the analysis of bulk soil samples for discrimination between specimens. The use of a 266 nm laser for LIBS analysis is reported for the first time in forensic soil analysis. Optimization of the LIBS method is discussed, and the results compared favorably to a laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) method previously developed. Precision for both methods was <10% for most elements. LIBS limits of detection were <33 ppm and bias <40% for most elements. In a proof of principle study, the LIBS method successfully discriminated samples from two different sites in Dade County, FL. Analysis of variance, Tukey's post hoc test and Student's t test resulted in 100% discrimination with no type I or type II errors. Principal components analysis (PCA) resulted in clear groupings of the two sites. A correct classification rate of 99.4% was obtained with linear discriminant analysis using leave-one-out validation. Similar results were obtained when the same samples were analyzed by LA-ICP-MS, showing that LIBS can provide similar information to LA-ICP-MS. In a forensic sampling/spatial heterogeneity study, the variation between sites, between sub-plots, between samples and within samples was examined on three similar Dade sites. The closer the sampling locations, the closer the grouping on a PCA plot and the higher the misclassification rate. These results underscore the importance of careful sampling for geographic site characterization. PMID:21461623

  18. The development of a tool for assessing the quality of closed circuit camera footage for use in forensic gait analysis.

    PubMed

    Birch, Ivan; Vernon, Wesley; Walker, Jeremy; Saxelby, Jai

    2013-10-01

    Gait analysis from closed circuit camera footage is now commonly used as evidence in criminal trials. The biomechanical analysis of human gait is a well established science in both clinical and laboratory settings. However, closed circuit camera footage is rarely of the quality of that taken in the more controlled clinical and laboratory environments. The less than ideal quality of much of this footage for use in gait analysis is associated with a range of issues, the combination of which can often render the footage unsuitable for use in gait analysis. The aim of this piece of work was to develop a tool for assessing the suitability of closed circuit camera footage for the purpose of forensic gait analysis. A Delphi technique was employed with a small sample of expert forensic gait analysis practitioners, to identify key quality elements of CCTV footage used in legal proceedings. Five elements of the footage were identified and then subdivided into 15 contributing sub-elements, each of which was scored using a 5-point Likert scale. A Microsoft Excel worksheet was developed to calculate automatically an overall score from the fifteen sub-element scores. Five expert witnesses experienced in using CCTV footage for gait analysis then trialled the prototype tool on current case footage. A repeatability study was also undertaken using standardized CCTV footage. The results showed the tool to be a simple and repeatable means of assessing the suitability of closed circuit camera footage for use in forensic gait analysis. The inappropriate use of poor quality footage could lead to challenges to the practice of forensic gait analysis. All parties involved in criminal proceedings must therefore understand the fitness for purpose of any footage used. The development of this tool could offer a method of achieving this goal, and help to assure the continued role of forensic gait analysis as an aid to the identification process. PMID:24112345

  19. The relationship of forensic odontology with various dental specialties in the articles published in the Journal of Forensic odonto-stomatology from 2005 to 2012

    PubMed Central

    Shamim, Thorakkal

    2015-01-01

    Background: There is a paucity of information about the relationship of forensic odontology with various dental specialties in the articles published in the Journal of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology. This study aimed to find the relationship of forensic odontology with various dental specialties in the articles published in the Journal of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology from 2005 to 2012 over an 8-year period. Methods: Bibliometric analysis was performed using web-based search during December 2013. Results: Out of the total 97 published articles, the maximum number of published articles were related to oral medicine and radiology (20) and community dentistry (20), followed by orthodontics (18), prosthodontics (15), and oral pathology and microbiology (8), pedodontics (7), oral and maxillofacial surgery (4) and conservative dentistry and endodontics (3). Among the articles published in Journal of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology, mass disasters (10) and bite mark analysis (10), followed by sexual dimorphism (8) and dental fraud and malpractice (8), followed by craniofacial superimposition (6) and identification (6) form the major attraction of the contributors. Conclusion: This paper has tried to evaluate the new working classification proposed for forensic odontology based on its relationship with other dental specialties. PMID:26097336

  20. Characterization/Selection of a Continuous Wave Laser for RIMS Analysis in Nuclear Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lau, Sunny; Alves, F.; Karunasiri, G.; Smith, C.; Isselhardt, B.

    2015-03-01

    The effort to implement the technology of resonance ionization mass spectroscopy (RIMS) to problems of nuclear forensics involves the use of multiple lasers to selectively ionize the elements of concern. While current systems incorporate pulsed lasers, we present the results of a feasibility study to determine alternative (Continuous Wave) laser technologies to be employed for analysis of the actinides and fission products of debris from a nuclear detonation. RIMS has the potential to provide rapid isotope ratio quantification of the actinides and important fission products for post detonation nuclear forensics. The current approach to ionize uranium and plutonium uses three Ti-Sapphire pulsed lasers capable of a fundamental wavelength range of 700-1000 nm. In this work, we describe the use of a COTS CW laser to replace one of the pulsed lasers used for the second resonance excitation step of plutonium near 847.282 nm. We characterize the critical laser parameters necessary to achieve high precision isotope ratio measurements including the stability over time of the mean wavelength, bandwidth and spectral mode purity. This far narrower bandwidth laser provides a simpler setup, more robust hardware (greater mobility), and more efficient use of laser irradiance.

  1. Meta-analysis of the MMPI-2 fake bad scale: utility in forensic practice.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Nathaniel W; Sweet, Jerry J; Demakis, George J

    2006-02-01

    Some clinical researchers disagree regarding the clinical utility of the MMPI-2 Fake Bad scale (FBS ) within forensic and clinical settings. The present meta-analysis summarizes weighted effect size differences among the FBS and other commonly used validity scales (L, F, K, Fb, Fp, F-K, O-S, Ds2, Dsr2 ) in symptom overreporting and comparison groups. Forty studies that included FBS were identified through exploration of online databases, perusal of published references, and communication with primary authors. Nineteen of the 40 studies met restrictive inclusion criteria, resulting in a pooled sample size of 3664 (1615 overreporting participants and 2049 comparison participants). The largest grand effect sizes were observed for FBS (.96), followed by O-S (.88), Dsr2 (.79), F-K (.69), and the F- scale (.63). Significant within-scale variability was observed for seven validity scales, including FBS (Q = 119.11, p < .001). Several subsequent FBS moderator analyses yielded moderate to large effect sizes and were statistically significant for level of cognitive effort, type of overreporting comparison group, and condition associated with overreporting (e.g., traumatic brain injury, posttraumatic stress, chronic pain). Findings suggest that the FBS performs as well as, if not superior to, other validity scales in discriminating overreporting and comparison groups; the preponderance of the present literature supports the scale's use within forensic settings. PMID:16393920

  2. Assessment of palatal rugae pattern and their reproducibility for application in forensic analysis

    PubMed Central

    Shetty, Divya; Juneja, Achint; Jain, Anshi; Khanna, Kaveri Surya; Pruthi, Neha; Gupta, Amit; Chowdhary, Meenakshi

    2013-01-01

    Background: Rugae are the anatomical folds that are located on the anterior third of palate behind the incisive papillae. They are also known as Plica palatine, and the study of these patterns is called palatoscopy. It can be used in various fields such as sex determination, orthodontics and forensic odontology. Objective: To investigate palatal rugae patterns in females and males and to evaluate the stability of these patterns in pre- and post-operative orthodontic cases. Materials and Methods: Fifty patients were selected for this study (25 males and 25 females). From the above sample, 10 males and 10 females had undergone orthodontic treatment and their casts were retrieved for sex determination analysis and stability of rugae patterns pre- and post-treatment. Results: Changes occur in bony structures during fixed orthodontic treatment but rugae patterns remain stable. Kappa stats and Chi square test were used to analyze agreement between the two evaluators, and 95% correct matches were achieved. Conclusion: Palatal rugae are unique to every individual and can be used as an indicator in forensic odontology. PMID:24255558

  3. Binary construct analysis of forensic psychiatric nursing in the UK: high, medium, and low security services.

    PubMed

    Mason, Tom; King, Lisa; Dulson, Julie

    2009-06-01

    The aim of this study was to identify if differences in perceptions of the role of forensic psychiatric nurses exist across the three levels of secure psychiatric provision: high, medium, and low. Any differences may reflect the type of clinical conditions found in different levels of security provision. An information-gathering schedule containing a validated 7-point Likert scale was distributed to 1200 forensic psychiatric nurses across the UK in 2005. A response rate of 34.6 was achieved, with 122 from high-security, 159 from medium-security, and 135 from low-security services. Differences in perceptions regarding role constructs were found across all three levels, with numerous differences being statistically significant using analysis of variance. The main implications are in relation to the development of skills and competencies, which should target specific clinical conditions in relation to effective interventions, the development of a specialist education and training curriculum focused on treatment outcomes, and the need for further research to draw together theory and practice. Finally, creative policy initiatives should be developed to cross-fertilize the levels of security provision in order that staff may acquire and deliver experiences in high-, medium-, and low-security psychiatric services. PMID:19490233

  4. The Potential of Cosmetic Applicators as a Source of DNA for Forensic Analysis.

    PubMed

    Adamowicz, Michael S; Labonte, Renáe D; Schienman, John E

    2015-07-01

    Personal products, such as toothbrushes, have been used as both known reference and evidentiary samples for forensic DNA analysis. This study examined the viability of a broad selection of cosmetic applicators for use as targets for human DNA extraction and short tandem repeat (STR) analysis using standard polymerase chain reaction (PCR) conditions. Applicator types included eyeliner smudgers, pencils and crayons, eye shadow sponges, mascara wands, concealer wands, face makeup sponges, pads and brushes, lipsticks and balms, and lip gloss wands. The quantity and quality of DNA extracted from each type of applicator were examined by assessing the number of loci successfully amplified and the peak balance of the heterozygous alleles in each full STR profile. While degraded DNA, stochastic amplification, and PCR inhibition were observed for some items, full STR profiles were developed for 14 of 76 applicators. The face makeup sponge applicators yielded the highest proportional number of full STR profiles (4/7). PMID:25783027

  5. Forensic Archaeological Recovery of a Large-Scale Mass Disaster Scene: Lessons Learned from Two Complex Recovery Operations at the World Trade Center Site.

    PubMed

    Warnasch, Scott C

    2016-05-01

    In 2006, unexpected discoveries of buried World Trade Center (WTC) debris and human remains were made at the World Trade Center mass disaster site. New York City's Office of Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) was given the task of systematically searching the site for any remaining victims' remains. The subsequent OCME assessment and archaeological excavation conducted from 2006 until 2013, resulted in the recovery of over 1,900 victims' remains. In addition, this operation demonstrated the essential skills archaeologists can provide in a mass disaster recovery operation. The OCME excavation data illustrates some of the challenges encountered during the original recovery effort of 2001/2002. It suggests that when understood within the larger site recovery context, certain fundamental components of the original recovery effort, such as operational priorities and activities in effect during the original recovery, directly or indirectly resulted in unsearched deposits that contained human remains. PMID:27122394

  6. State of the art in risk analysis of workforce criticality influencing disaster preparedness for interdependent systems.

    PubMed

    Santos, Joost R; Herrera, Lucia Castro; Yu, Krista Danielle S; Pagsuyoin, Sheree Ann T; Tan, Raymond R

    2014-06-01

    The objective of this article is to discuss a needed paradigm shift in disaster risk analysis to emphasize the role of the workforce in managing the recovery of interdependent infrastructure and economic systems. Much of the work that has been done on disaster risk analysis has focused primarily on preparedness and recovery strategies for disrupted infrastructure systems. The reliability of systems such as transportation, electric power, and telecommunications is crucial in sustaining business processes, supply chains, and regional livelihoods, as well as ensuring the availability of vital services in the aftermath of disasters. There has been a growing momentum in recognizing workforce criticality in the aftermath of disasters; nevertheless, significant gaps still remain in modeling, assessing, and managing workforce disruptions and their associated ripple effects to other interdependent systems. The workforce plays a pivotal role in ensuring that a disrupted region continues to function and subsequently recover from the adverse effects of disasters. With this in mind, this article presents a review of recent studies that have underscored the criticality of workforce sectors in formulating synergistic preparedness and recovery policies for interdependent infrastructure and regional economic systems. PMID:24593287

  7. Forensic Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoffmann, William D.; Jackson, Glen P.

    2015-07-01

    Developments in forensic mass spectrometry tend to follow, rather than lead, the developments in other disciplines. Examples of techniques having forensic potential born independently of forensic applications include ambient ionization, imaging mass spectrometry, isotope ratio mass spectrometry, portable mass spectrometers, and hyphenated chromatography-mass spectrometry instruments, to name a few. Forensic science has the potential to benefit enormously from developments that are funded by other means, if only the infrastructure and personnel existed to adopt, validate, and implement the new technologies into casework. Perhaps one unique area in which forensic science is at the cutting edge is in the area of chemometrics and the determination of likelihood ratios for the evaluation of the weight of evidence. Such statistical techniques have been developed most extensively for ignitable-liquid residue analyses and isotope ratio analysis. This review attempts to capture the trends, motivating forces, and likely impact of developing areas of forensic mass spectrometry, with the caveat that none of this research is likely to have any real impact in the forensic community unless: (a) The instruments developed are turned into robust black boxes with red and green lights for positives and negatives, respectively, or (b) there are PhD graduates in the workforce who can help adopt these sophisticated techniques.

  8. Nuclear forensic analysis of uranium oxide powders interdicted in Victoria, Australia

    SciTech Connect

    Kristo, Michael Joseph; Keegan, Elizabeth; Colella, Michael; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; Plaue, Jonathan; Knight, Kim; Loi, Elaine; Hotchkis, Michael; Moody, Kenton; Singleton, Michael; Robel, Martin; Hutcheon, Ian

    2015-04-13

    Nuclear forensic analysis was conducted on two uranium samples confiscated during a police investigation in Victoria, Australia. The first sample, designated NSR-F-270409-1, was a depleted uranium powder of moderate purity (~1000 μg/g total elemental impurities). The chemical form of the uranium was a compound similar to K2(UO2)3O4·4H2O. While aliquoting NSR-F-270409-1 for analysis, the body and head of a Tineid moth was discovered in the sample. The second sample, designated NSR-F-270409-2, was also a depleted uranium powder. It was of reasonably high purity (~380 μg/g total elemental impurities). The chemical form of the uranium was primarily UO3·2H2O, with minor phases of U3O8 and UO2. While aliquoting NSR-F-270409-2 for analysis, a metal staple of unknown origin was discovered in the sample. The presence of 236U and 232U in both samples indicates that the uranium feed stocks for these samples experienced a neutron flux at some point in their history. The reactor burn-up calculated from the isotopic composition of the uranium is consistent with that of spent fuel from natural uranium (NU) fueled Pu production. These nuclear forensic conclusions allow us to categorically exclude Australia as the origin of the material and greatly reduce the number of candidate sources.

  9. Measurement and analysis of diastereomer ratios for forensic characterization of brodifacoum

    SciTech Connect

    Cort, John R.; Alperin, Paul J.; Cho, Herman M.

    2012-01-10

    The highly toxic organic compound brodifacoum exists as two diastereomers. The diasteromer ratio in a sample depends on the methods and conditions used for synthesis and purification, and may vary over time due to differential stability of the diastereomers. The stereoisomer distribution may thus be viewed as a chemical forensic signature, containing information about the production and history of unknown samples, and providing a basis of comparison between samples. A determination of diastereomer ratios can be performed by a number of techniques, notably gas or liquid chromatography or nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. An analysis of a cross-section of U.S.-made commercial technical grade brodifacoum material shows that there are detectable manufacturer-to-manufacturer and batch-to-batch variations in diastereomer ratios. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is operated by Battelle for the US Department of Energy.

  10. A multiplex panel of short-amplicon insertion-deletion DNA polymorphisms for forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Santos, V R D; Pena, H B; Pena, S D J

    2015-01-01

    We have previously developed a panel of 40 insertion-deletion (INDEL) human DNA polymorphisms that was proven to ad-equately cover the span of global human genetic diversity. The panel was found to have very low matching probabilities with respect to both the global and Brazilian populations. To optimize the panel for application with degraded DNA samples, which are commonly encountered in fo-rensic analysis, we have significantly reduced the amplicon size of the INDELs and developed a new multiplex panel. The panel has an ampli-con size ranging from 50 to 153 base pairs, with a mean of 93 base pairs. It could be amplified by polymerase chain reaction in two multiplex re-actions, which were then combined for electrophoretic separation and identification of the individual products in the ABI3130 four-color DNA analyzer. The results of the new panel were fully validated. PMID:25966056

  11. Forensic analysis of ignitable liquids in fire debris by comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography.

    PubMed

    Frysinger, Glenn S; Gaines, Richard B

    2002-05-01

    The application of comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC x GC) for the forensic analysis of ignitable liquids in fire debris is reported. GC x GC is a high resolution, multidimensional gas chromatographic method in which each component of a complex mixture is subjected to two independent chromatographic separations. The high resolving power of GC x GC can separate hundreds of chemical components from a complex fire debris extract. The GC x GC chromatogram is a multicolor plot of two-dimensional retention time and detector signal intensity that is well suited for rapid identification and fingerprinting of ignitable liquids. GC x GC chromatograms were used to identify and classify ignitable liquids, detect minor differences between similar ignitable liquids, track the chemical changes associated with weathering, characterize the chemical composition of fire debris pyrolysates, and detect weathered ignitable liquids against a background of fire debris pyrolysates. PMID:12051325

  12. The Exploration & Forensic Analysis of Computer Usage Data in the Elderly

    PubMed Central

    Hatt, William J.; VanBaak, Edward A.; Jimison, Holly B.; Hagler, Stuart; Hayes, Tamara L.; Pavel, Misha; Kaye, Jeffery

    2010-01-01

    Unobtrusive in-home computer monitoring could one day be used to deliver cost-effective diagnostic information about the cognitive abilities of the elderly. This could allow for early detection of cognitive impairment and would additionally be coupled with the cost advantages that are associated with a semi-automated system. Before using the computer usage data to draw conclusions about the participants, we first needed to investigate the nature of the data that was collected. This paper represents a forensics style analysis of the computer usage data that is being collected as part of a larger study of cognitive decline, and focuses on the isolation and removal of non user-generated activities that were recorded by our computer monitoring software (CMS). PMID:19963743

  13. Validation of the Applied Biosystems Prism 377 automated sequencer for the forensic short tandem repeat analysis.

    PubMed

    Frazier, R R; Millican, E S; Watson, S K; Oldroyd, N J; Sparkles, R L; Taylor, K M; Panchal, S; Bark, L; Kimpton, C P; Gill, P D

    1996-10-01

    The Applied Biosystems (ABI) Prism 377 DNA sequencer has been evaluated in an attempt to increase the throughput of samples for short tandem repeat (STR) analysis, in both forensic casework and the UK National Criminal Intelligence DNA Database. The gel system assessed consisted of 0.2 mm, 4% acrylamide 6 M urea gels, with a well-to-read distance of 36 cm. Gels were run at a constant voltage of 3 kV and constant temperature of 51 degrees C. The run time of our second generation multiplex (SGM) STR system was achieved in less than 2 h. Rigorous validation has been performed on the instrument hardware and software. Complete resolution of 1 base differences was obtained, up to and beyond 350 bases; sizing precision across gels was more than 2-fold higher than the 373A and the sensitivity was increased by one third. PMID:8957178

  14. Frequency Spectrum Method-Based Stress Analysis for Oil Pipelines in Earthquake Disaster Areas

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Xiaonan; Lu, Hongfang; Huang, Kun; Wu, Shijuan; Qiao, Weibiao

    2015-01-01

    When a long distance oil pipeline crosses an earthquake disaster area, inertial force and strong ground motion can cause the pipeline stress to exceed the failure limit, resulting in bending and deformation failure. To date, researchers have performed limited safety analyses of oil pipelines in earthquake disaster areas that include stress analysis. Therefore, using the spectrum method and theory of one-dimensional beam units, CAESAR II is used to perform a dynamic earthquake analysis for an oil pipeline in the XX earthquake disaster area. This software is used to determine if the displacement and stress of the pipeline meet the standards when subjected to a strong earthquake. After performing the numerical analysis, the primary seismic action axial, longitudinal and horizontal displacement directions and the critical section of the pipeline can be located. Feasible project enhancement suggestions based on the analysis results are proposed. The designer is able to utilize this stress analysis method to perform an ultimate design for an oil pipeline in earthquake disaster areas; therefore, improving the safe operation of the pipeline. PMID:25692790

  15. Frequency spectrum method-based stress analysis for oil pipelines in earthquake disaster areas.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiaonan; Lu, Hongfang; Huang, Kun; Wu, Shijuan; Qiao, Weibiao

    2015-01-01

    When a long distance oil pipeline crosses an earthquake disaster area, inertial force and strong ground motion can cause the pipeline stress to exceed the failure limit, resulting in bending and deformation failure. To date, researchers have performed limited safety analyses of oil pipelines in earthquake disaster areas that include stress analysis. Therefore, using the spectrum method and theory of one-dimensional beam units, CAESAR II is used to perform a dynamic earthquake analysis for an oil pipeline in the XX earthquake disaster area. This software is used to determine if the displacement and stress of the pipeline meet the standards when subjected to a strong earthquake. After performing the numerical analysis, the primary seismic action axial, longitudinal and horizontal displacement directions and the critical section of the pipeline can be located. Feasible project enhancement suggestions based on the analysis results are proposed. The designer is able to utilize this stress analysis method to perform an ultimate design for an oil pipeline in earthquake disaster areas; therefore, improving the safe operation of the pipeline. PMID:25692790

  16. Forensic Analysis of Venezuelan Elections during the Chávez Presidency

    PubMed Central

    Jiménez, Raúl; Hidalgo, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    Hugo Chávez dominated the Venezuelan electoral landscape since his first presidential victory in 1998 until his death in 2013. Nobody doubts that he always received considerable voter support in the numerous elections held during his mandate. However, the integrity of the electoral system has come into question since the 2004 Presidential Recall Referendum. From then on, different sectors of society have systematically alleged electoral irregularities or biases in favor of the incumbent party. We have carried out a thorough forensic analysis of the national-level Venezuelan electoral processes held during the 1998–2012 period to assess these complaints. The second-digit Benford's law and two statistical models of vote distributions, recently introduced in the literature, are reviewed and used in our case study. In addition, we discuss a new method to detect irregular variations in the electoral roll. The outputs obtained from these election forensic tools are examined taking into account the substantive context of the elections and referenda under study. Thus, we reach two main conclusions. Firstly, all the tools uncover anomalous statistical patterns, which are consistent with election fraud from 2004 onwards. Although our results are not a concluding proof of fraud, they signal the Recall Referendum as a turning point in the integrity of the Venezuelan elections. Secondly, our analysis calls into question the reliability of the electoral register since 2004. In particular, we found irregular variations in the electoral roll that were decisive in winning the 50% majority in the 2004 Referendum and in the 2012 Presidential Elections. PMID:24971462

  17. Development of a forensically useful age prediction method based on DNA methylation analysis.

    PubMed

    Zbieć-Piekarska, Renata; Spólnicka, Magdalena; Kupiec, Tomasz; Parys-Proszek, Agnieszka; Makowska, Żanetta; Pałeczka, Anna; Kucharczyk, Krzysztof; Płoski, Rafał; Branicki, Wojciech

    2015-07-01

    Forensic DNA phenotyping needs to be supplemented with age prediction to become a relevant source of information on human appearance. Recent progress in analysis of the human methylome has enabled selection of multiple candidate loci showing linear correlation with chronological age. Practical application in forensic science depends on successful validation of these potential age predictors. In this study, eight DNA methylation candidate loci were analysed using convenient and reliable pyrosequencing technology. A total number of 41 CpG sites was investigated in 420 samples collected from men and women aged from 2 to 75 years. The study confirmed correlation of all the investigated markers with human age. The five most significantly correlated CpG sites in ELOVL2 on 6p24.2, C1orf132 on 1q32.2, TRIM59 on 3q25.33, KLF14 on 7q32.3 and FHL2 on 2q12.2 were chosen to build a prediction model. This restriction allowed the technical analysis to be simplified without lowering the prediction accuracy significantly. Model parameters for a discovery set of 300 samples were R(2)=0.94 and the standard error of the estimate=4.5 years. An independent set of 120 samples was used to test the model performance. Mean absolute deviation for this testing set was 3.9 years. The number of correct predictions ±5 years achieved a very high level of 86.7% in the age category 2-19 and gradually decreased to 50% in the age category 60-75. The prediction model was deterministic for individuals belonging to these two extreme age categories. The developed method was implemented in a freely available online age prediction calculator. PMID:26026729

  18. Design of experiments and data analysis challenges in calibration for forensics applications

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson-Cook, Christine M.; Burr, Thomas L.; Hamada, Michael S.; Ruggiero, Christy E.; Thomas, Edward V.

    2015-07-15

    Forensic science aims to infer characteristics of source terms using measured observables. Our focus is on statistical design of experiments and data analysis challenges arising in nuclear forensics. More specifically, we focus on inferring aspects of experimental conditions (of a process to produce product Pu oxide powder), such as temperature, nitric acid concentration, and Pu concentration, using measured features of the product Pu oxide powder. The measured features, Y, include trace chemical concentrations and particle morphology such as particle size and shape of the produced Pu oxide power particles. Making inferences about the nature of inputs X that were used to create nuclear materials having particular characteristics, Y, is an inverse problem. Therefore, statistical analysis can be used to identify the best set (or sets) of Xs for a new set of observed responses Y. One can fit a model (or models) such as Υ = f(Χ) + error, for each of the responses, based on a calibration experiment and then “invert” to solve for the best set of Xs for a new set of Ys. This perspectives paper uses archived experimental data to consider aspects of data collection and experiment design for the calibration data to maximize the quality of the predicted Ys in the forward models; that is, we assume that well-estimated forward models are effective in the inverse problem. In addition, we consider how to identify a best solution for the inferred X, and evaluate the quality of the result and its robustness to a variety of initial assumptions, and different correlation structures between the responses. In addition, we also briefly review recent advances in metrology issues related to characterizing particle morphology measurements used in the response vector, Y.

  19. Design of experiments and data analysis challenges in calibration for forensics applications

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Anderson-Cook, Christine M.; Burr, Thomas L.; Hamada, Michael S.; Ruggiero, Christy E.; Thomas, Edward V.

    2015-07-15

    Forensic science aims to infer characteristics of source terms using measured observables. Our focus is on statistical design of experiments and data analysis challenges arising in nuclear forensics. More specifically, we focus on inferring aspects of experimental conditions (of a process to produce product Pu oxide powder), such as temperature, nitric acid concentration, and Pu concentration, using measured features of the product Pu oxide powder. The measured features, Y, include trace chemical concentrations and particle morphology such as particle size and shape of the produced Pu oxide power particles. Making inferences about the nature of inputs X that were usedmore » to create nuclear materials having particular characteristics, Y, is an inverse problem. Therefore, statistical analysis can be used to identify the best set (or sets) of Xs for a new set of observed responses Y. One can fit a model (or models) such as Υ = f(Χ) + error, for each of the responses, based on a calibration experiment and then “invert” to solve for the best set of Xs for a new set of Ys. This perspectives paper uses archived experimental data to consider aspects of data collection and experiment design for the calibration data to maximize the quality of the predicted Ys in the forward models; that is, we assume that well-estimated forward models are effective in the inverse problem. In addition, we consider how to identify a best solution for the inferred X, and evaluate the quality of the result and its robustness to a variety of initial assumptions, and different correlation structures between the responses. In addition, we also briefly review recent advances in metrology issues related to characterizing particle morphology measurements used in the response vector, Y.« less

  20. The power of contextual effects in forensic anthropology: a study of biasability in the visual interpretations of trauma analysis on skeletal remains.

    PubMed

    Nakhaeizadeh, Sherry; Hanson, Ian; Dozzi, Nathalie

    2014-09-01

    The potential for contextual information to bias assessments in the forensic sciences has been demonstrated, in several forensic disiplines. In this paper, biasability potential within forensic anthropology was examined by analyzing the effects of external manipulations on judgments and decision-making in visual trauma assessment. Three separate websites were created containing fourteen identical images. Participants were randomly assigned to one website. Each website provided different contextual information, to assess variation of interpretation of the same images between contexts. The results indicated a higher scoring of trauma identification responses for the Mass grave context. Furthermore, a significant biasing effect was detected in the interpretation of four images. Less experienced participants were more likely to indicate presence of trauma. This research demonstrates bias impact in forensic anthropological trauma assessments and highlights the importance of recognizing and limiting cognitive vulnerabilities that forensic anthropologists might bring to the analysis. PMID:24666192

  1. Autopsy practice in forensic pathology - evidence-based or experience-based? a review of autopsies performed on victims of traumatic asphyxia in a mass disaster.

    PubMed

    Colville-Ebeling, Bonnie; Freeman, Michael; Banner, Jytte; Lynnerup, Niels

    2014-02-01

    Current autopsy practice in forensic pathology is to a large extent based on experience and individual customary practices as opposed to evidence and consensus based practices. As a result there is the potential for substantial variation in how knowledge is applied in each case. In the present case series, we describe the variation observed in autopsy reports by five different pathologists of eight victims who died simultaneously from traumatic asphyxia due to compression during a human stampede. We observed that there was no mention of the availability of medical charts in five of the reports, of potentially confounding resuscitation efforts in three reports, of cardinal signs in seven reports and of associated injuries to a various degree in all reports. Further, there was mention of supplemental histological examination in two reports and of pre-autopsy radiograph in six reports. We inferred that reliance on experience and individual customary practices led to disparities between the autopsy reports as well as omissions of important information such as cardinal signs, and conclude that such reliance increases the potential for error in autopsy practice. We suggest that pre-autopsy data-gathering and the use of check lists specific to certain injury causes are likely to result in less deviation from evidence-based practices in forensic pathology. Pre-autopsy data-gathering and check lists will help ensure a higher degree of standardization in autopsy reports thus enhancing the quality and accuracy of the report as a legal document as well as rendering it more useful for data-gathering efforts. PMID:24485418

  2. FORENSIC ANALYSIS OF WINDOW’S® VIRTUAL MEMORY INCORPORATING THE SYSTEM’S PAGEFILE COUNTERINTELLIGENCE THROUGH MALICIOUS CODE ANALYSIS

    SciTech Connect

    Jared Stimson Edward Murphy

    2007-06-01

    FORENSIC ANALYSIS OF WINDOW’S® VIRTUAL MEMORY INCORPORATING THE SYSTEM’S PAGEFILE Computer Forensics is concerned with the use of computer investigation and analysis techniques in order to collect evidence suitable for presentation in court. The examination of volatile memory is a relatively new but important area in computer forensics. More recently criminals are becoming more forensically aware and are now able to compromise computers without accessing the hard disk of the target computer. This means that traditional incident response practice of pulling the plug will destroy the only evidence of the crime. While some techniques are available for acquiring the contents of main memory, few exist which can analyze these data in a meaningful way. One reason for this is how memory is managed by the operating system. Data belonging to one process can be distributed arbitrarily across physical memory or the hard disk, making it very difficult to recover useful information. This report will focus on how these disparate sources of information can be combined to give a single, contiguous address space for each process. Using address translation a tool is developed to reconstruct the virtual address space of a process by combining a physical memory dump with the page-file on the hard disk. COUNTERINTELLIGENCE THROUGH MALICIOUS CODE ANALYSIS As computer network technology continues to grow so does the reliance on this technology for everyday business functionality. To appeal to customers and employees alike, businesses are seeking an increased online prescience, and to increase productivity the same businesses are computerizing their day-to-day operations. The combination of a publicly accessible interface to the businesses network, and the increase in the amount of intellectual property present on these networks presents serious risks. All of this intellectual property now faces constant attacks from a wide variety of malicious software that is intended to uncover company and government secrets. Every year billions of dollars are invested in preventing and recovering from the introduction of malicious code into a system. However, there is little research being done on leveraging these attacks for counterintelligence opportunities. With the ever-increasing number of vulnerable computers on the Internet the task of attributing these attacks to an organization or a single person is a daunting one. This thesis will demonstrate the idea of intentionally running a piece of malicious code in a secure environment in order to gain counterintelligence on an attacker.

  3. Consequences of Decontamination Procedures in Forensic Hair Analysis Using Metal-Assisted Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry Analysis.

    PubMed

    Cuypers, Eva; Flinders, Bryn; Boone, Carolien M; Bosman, Ingrid J; Lusthof, Klaas J; Van Asten, Arian C; Tytgat, Jan; Heeren, Ron M A

    2016-03-15

    Today, hair testing is considered to be the standard method for the detection of chronic drug abuse. Nevertheless, the differentiation between systemic exposure and external contamination remains a major challenge in the forensic interpretation of hair analysis. Nowadays, it is still impossible to directly show the difference between external contamination and use-related incorporation. Although the effects of washing procedures on the distribution of (incorporated) drugs in hair remain unknown, these decontamination procedures prior to hair analysis are considered to be indispensable in order to exclude external contamination. However, insights into the effect of decontamination protocols on levels and distribution of drugs incorporated in hair are essential to draw the correct forensic conclusions from hair analysis; we studied the consequences of these procedures on the spatial distribution of cocaine in hair using imaging mass spectrometry. Additionally, using metal-assisted secondary ion mass spectrometry, we are the first to directly show the difference between cocaine-contaminated and user hair without any prior washing procedure. PMID:26878081

  4. Forensic Phonetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nolan, Francis

    1991-01-01

    Examines, with skepticism, the history and development of forensic phonetics in response to the publication of "Forensic Phonetics" by J. Baldwin and P. French (1990). Three issues are specifically explored: (1) whether voices are unique, (2) whether a purely auditory approach is adequate, and (3) whether legally sufficient conclusions about…

  5. Macroeconomics of Natural Disasters: Strengths and Weaknesses of Meta-Analysis Versus Review of Literature.

    PubMed

    A G van Bergeijk, Peter; Lazzaroni, Sara

    2015-06-01

    We use the case of the macroeconomic impact of natural disasters to analyze strengths and weaknesses of meta-analysis in an emerging research field. Macroeconomists have published on this issue since 2002 (we identified 60 studies to date). The results of the studies are contradictory and therefore the need to synthesize the available research is evident. Meta-analysis is a useful method in this field. An important aim of our article is to show how one can use the identified methodological characteristics to better understand the robustness and importance of new findings. To provide a comparative perspective, we contrast our meta-analysis and its findings with the major influential research synthesis in the field: the IPCC's 2012 special report Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation. We show that the IPCC could have been more confident about the negative economic impact of disasters and more transparent on inclusion and qualification of studies, if it had been complemented by a meta-analysis. Our meta-analysis shows that, controlling for modeling strategies and data set, the impact of disasters is significantly negative. The evidence is strongest for direct costs studies where we see no difference between our larger sample and the studies included in the IPCC report. Direct cost studies and indirect cost studies differ significantly, both in terms of the confidence that can be attached to a negative impact of natural disasters and in terms of the sources of heterogeneity of the findings reported in the primary studies. PMID:25847486

  6. The Engagement of Academic Institutions in Community Disaster Response: A Comparative Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Dunlop, Anne L.; Logue, Kristi M.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Using comparative analysis, we examined the factors that influence the engagement of academic institutions in community disaster response. Methods We identified colleges and universities located in counties affected by four Federal Emergency Management Agency-declared disasters (Kentucky ice storms, Hurricanes Ike and Gustav, California wildfires, and the Columbia space shuttle disintegration) and performed key informant interviews with officials from public health, emergency management, and academic institutions in those counties. We used a comparative case study approach to explore particular resources provided by academic institutions, processes for engagement, and reasons for engagement or lack thereof in the community disaster response. Results Academic institutions contribute a broad range of resources to community disaster response. Their involvement and the extent of their engagement is variable and influenced by (1) their resources, (2) preexisting relationships with public health and emergency management organizations, (3) the structure and organizational placement of the school's disaster planning and response office, and (4) perceptions of liability and lines of authority. Facilitators of engagement include (1) the availability of faculty expertise or special training programs, (2) academic staff presence on public health and emergency management planning boards, (3) faculty contracts and student practica, (4) incident command system or emergency operations training of academic staff, and (5) the existence of mutual aid or memoranda of agreements. Conclusion While a range of relationships exist between academic institutions that engage with public health and emergency management agencies in community disaster response, recurrent win-win themes include co-appointed faculty and staff; field experience opportunities for students; and shared planning and training for academic, public health, and emergency management personnel. PMID:25355979

  7. The Central European Flood in June 2013: Experiences from a Near-Real Time Disaster Analysis in Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schröter, Kai; Khazai, Bijan; Mühr, Bernhard; Elmer, Florian; Bessel, Tina; Möhrle, Stella; Dittrich, André; Kreibich, Heidi; Fohringer, Joachim; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Trieselmann, Werner; Kunz, Michael; Merz, Bruno

    2014-05-01

    The central European flood in June 2013 once again revealed that complete flood protection is not possible. Inundations caused severe damage to buildings, infrastructure and agricultural lands. Official estimates of total damage in Germany amount to approx. 8bn € which is lower than the damage caused by the August 2002 flood - the most expensive natural hazard experienced so far in Germany. Repeated and long lasting precipitation in combination with extremely adverse preconditions induced a large scale flood event. In Germany, particularly the catchment areas of the Danube and Elbe were affected. The June 2013 flood has been the most severe flood event in terms of spatial extent and magnitude of flood peaks in Germany during the last 60 years. Large scale inundation occurred as a consequence of levee breaches near Deggendorf (Danube), Groß Rosenau and Fischbeck (Elbe). The flood has had a great impact on people, transportation and the economy. In many areas more than 50,000 thousand people were evacuated. Electrical grid and local water supply utilities failed during the floods. Furthermore, traffic was disrupted in the interregional transportation network including federal highways and long distance railways. CEDIM analysed and assessed the flood event within its current research activity on near real time forensic disaster analysis (CEDIM FDA: www.cedim.de). This contribution gives an overview about the CEDIM FDA analyses' results. It describes the key hydro-meteorological factors that triggered this extraordinary event and draws comparisons to major flood events in August 2002 and July 1954. Further, it shows the outcomes of a rapid initial impact assessment on the district level using social, economic and institutional indicators which are supplemented with information on the number of people evacuated and transportation disruptions and combined with the magnitude of the event.

  8. Compound-specific isotope analysis of diesel fuels in a forensic investigation

    PubMed Central

    Muhammad, Syahidah A.; Frew, Russell D.; Hayman, Alan R.

    2015-01-01

    Compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA) offers great potential as a tool to provide chemical evidence in a forensic investigation. Many attempts to trace environmental oil spills were successful where isotopic values were particularly distinct. However, difficulties arise when a large data set is analyzed and the isotopic differences between samples are subtle. In the present study, discrimination of diesel oils involved in a diesel theft case was carried out to infer the relatedness of the samples to potential source samples. This discriminatory analysis used a suite of hydrocarbon diagnostic indices, alkanes, to generate carbon and hydrogen isotopic data of the compositions of the compounds which were then processed using multivariate statistical analyses to infer the relatedness of the data set. The results from this analysis were put into context by comparing the data with the δ13C and δ2H of alkanes in commercial diesel samples obtained from various locations in the South Island of New Zealand. Based on the isotopic character of the alkanes, it is suggested that diesel fuels involved in the diesel theft case were distinguishable. This manuscript shows that CSIA when used in tandem with multivariate statistical analysis provide a defensible means to differentiate and source-apportion qualitatively similar oils at the molecular level. This approach was able to overcome confounding challenges posed by the near single-point source of origin, i.e., the very subtle differences in isotopic values between the samples. PMID:25774366

  9. Compound-Specific Isotope Analysis of Diesel Fuels in a Forensic Investigation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muhammad, Syahidah; Frew, Russell; Hayman, Alan

    2015-02-01

    Compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA) offers great potential as a tool to provide chemical evidence in a forensic investigation. Many attempts to trace environmental oil spills were successful where isotopic values were particularly distinct. However, difficulties arise when a large data set is analyzed and the isotopic differences between samples are subtle. In the present study, discrimination of diesel oils involved in a diesel theft case was carried out to infer the relatedness of the samples to potential source samples. This discriminatory analysis used a suite of hydrocarbon diagnostic indices, alkanes, to generate carbon and hydrogen isotopic data of the compositions of the compounds which were then processed using multivariate statistical analyses to infer the relatedness of the data set. The results from this analysis were put into context by comparing the data with the δ13C and δ2H of alkanes in commercial diesel samples obtained from various locations in the South Island of New Zealand. Based on the isotopic character of the alkanes, it is suggested that diesel fuels involved in the diesel theft case were distinguishable. This manuscript shows that CSIA when used in tandem with multivariate statistical analysis provide a defensible means to differentiate and source-apportion qualitatively similar oils at the molecular level. This approach was able to overcome confounding challenges posed by the near single-point source of origin i.e. the very subtle differences in isotopic values between the samples.

  10. Compound-specific isotope analysis of diesel fuels in a forensic investigation.

    PubMed

    Muhammad, Syahidah A; Frew, Russell D; Hayman, Alan R

    2015-01-01

    Compound-specific isotope analysis (CSIA) offers great potential as a tool to provide chemical evidence in a forensic investigation. Many attempts to trace environmental oil spills were successful where isotopic values were particularly distinct. However, difficulties arise when a large data set is analyzed and the isotopic differences between samples are subtle. In the present study, discrimination of diesel oils involved in a diesel theft case was carried out to infer the relatedness of the samples to potential source samples. This discriminatory analysis used a suite of hydrocarbon diagnostic indices, alkanes, to generate carbon and hydrogen isotopic data of the compositions of the compounds which were then processed using multivariate statistical analyses to infer the relatedness of the data set. The results from this analysis were put into context by comparing the data with the δ(13)C and δ(2)H of alkanes in commercial diesel samples obtained from various locations in the South Island of New Zealand. Based on the isotopic character of the alkanes, it is suggested that diesel fuels involved in the diesel theft case were distinguishable. This manuscript shows that CSIA when used in tandem with multivariate statistical analysis provide a defensible means to differentiate and source-apportion qualitatively similar oils at the molecular level. This approach was able to overcome confounding challenges posed by the near single-point source of origin, i.e., the very subtle differences in isotopic values between the samples. PMID:25774366

  11. Activation analysis study on Li-ion batteries for nuclear forensic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Erik B.; Whitney, Chad; Holbert, Keith E.; Zhang, Taipeng; Stannard, Tyler; Christie, Anthony; Harper, Peter; Anderson, Blake; Christian, James F.

    2015-06-01

    The nuclear materials environment has been increasing significantly in complexity over the past couple of decades. The prevention of attacks from nuclear weapons is becoming more difficult, and nuclear forensics is a deterrent by providing detailed information on any type of nuclear event for proper attribution. One component of the nuclear forensic analysis is a measurement of the neutron spectrum. As an example, the neutron component provides information on the composition of the weapons, whether boosting is involved or the mechanisms used in creating a supercritical state. As 6Li has a large cross-section for thermal neutrons, the lithium battery is a primary candidate for assessing the neutron spectrum after detonation. The absorption process for 6Li yields tritium, which can be measured at a later point after the nuclear event, as long as the battery can be processed in a manner to successfully extract the tritium content. In addition, measuring the activated constituents after exposure provides a means to reconstruct the incident neutron spectrum. The battery consists of a spiral or folded layers of material that have unique, energy dependent interactions associated with the incident neutron flux. A detailed analysis on the batteries included a pre-irradiated mass spectrometry analysis to be used as input for neutron spectrum reconstruction. A set of batteries were exposed to a hard neutron spectrum delivered by the University of Massachusetts, Lowell research reactor Fast Neutron Irradiator (FNI). The gamma spectra were measured from the batteries within a few days and within a week after the exposure to obtain sufficient data on the activated materials in the batteries. The activity was calculated for a number of select isotopes, indicating the number of associated neutron interactions. The results from tritium extraction are marginal. A measurable increase in detected particles (gammas and betas) below 50 keV not self-attenuated by the battery was observed, yet as the spectra are coarse, the gamma information is not separable from tritium spectra. The activation analysis was successful, and the incident neutron spectrum was reconstructed using materials found in lithium batteries.

  12. Real-time forensic DNA analysis at a crime scene using a portable microchip analyzer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Peng; Yeung, Stephanie H I; Crenshaw, Karin A; Crouse, Cecelia A; Scherer, James R; Mathies, Richard A

    2008-09-01

    An integrated lab-on-a-chip system has been developed and successfully utilized for real-time forensic short tandem repeat (STR) analysis. The microdevice comprises a 160-nL polymerase chain reaction reactor with an on-chip heater and a temperature sensor for thermal cycling, microvalves for fluidic manipulation, a co-injector for sizing standard injection, and a 7-cm-long separation channel for capillary electrophoretic analysis. A 9-plex autosomal STR typing system consisting of amelogenin and eight combined DNA index system (CODIS) core STR loci has been constructed and optimized for this real-time human identification study. Reproducible STR profiles of control DNA samples are obtained in 2h and 30min with analysis establishes the feasibility of real-time DNA typing to identify the contributor of probative biological evidence at a crime scene and for real-time human identification. PMID:19083840

  13. Single cells for forensic DNA analysis--from evidence material to test tube.

    PubMed

    Brück, Simon; Evers, Heidrun; Heidorn, Frank; Müller, Ute; Kilper, Roland; Verhoff, Marcel A

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this project was to develop a method that, while providing morphological quality control, allows single cells to be obtained from the surfaces of various evidence materials and be made available for DNA analysis in cases where only small amounts of cell material are present or where only mixed traces are found. With the SteREO Lumar.V12 stereomicroscope and UV unit from Zeiss, it was possible to detect and assess single epithelial cells on the surfaces of various objects (e.g., glass, plastic, metal). A digitally operated micromanipulator developed by aura optik was used to lift a single cell from the surface of evidence material and to transfer it to a conventional PCR tube or to an AmpliGrid(®) from Advalytix. The actual lifting of the cells was performed with microglobes that acted as carriers. The microglobes were held with microtweezers and were transferred to the DNA analysis receptacles along with the adhering cells. In a next step, the PCR can be carried out in this receptacle without removing the microglobe. Our method allows a single cell to be isolated directly from evidence material and be made available for forensic DNA analysis. PMID:21198592

  14. GeneMarker® HID: A reliable software tool for the analysis of forensic STR data.

    PubMed

    Holland, Mitchell M; Parson, Walther

    2011-01-01

    GeneMarker(®) HID was assessed as a software tool for the analysis of forensic short tandem repeat (STR) data and as a resource for analysis of custom STR multiplexes. The software is easy to learn and use, and includes design features that have the potential to reduce user fatigue. To illustrate reliability and accuracy, STR data from both single-source and mixture profiles were analyzed and compared to profiles interpreted with another software package. A total of 1898 STR profiles representing 28,470 loci and more than 42,000 alleles were analyzed with 100% concordance. GeneMarker HID was also used to successfully analyze data generated from a custom STR multiplex, with simplified and rapid implementation. Finally, the impact of the user-friendly design features of the software was assessed through a time scale study. The results suggest that laboratories can reduce the time required for data analysis by at least 25% when using GeneMarker HID. PMID:20887353

  15. Solid-phase synthesis of Rhodamine-110 fluorogenic substrates and their application in forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Gooch, J; Abbate, V; Daniel, B; Frascione, N

    2016-04-21

    A novel synthetic route for the rapid and efficient preparation of fluorogenic substrates utilizing Rhodamine-110 or similar fluorophores is reported. Applicability of the synthesized peptide substrate within a forensic casework context is also presented. PMID:27027574

  16. Reverse engineering--rapid prototyping of the skull in forensic trauma analysis.

    PubMed

    Kettner, Mattias; Schmidt, Peter; Potente, Stefan; Ramsthaler, Frank; Schrodt, Michael

    2011-07-01

    Rapid prototyping (RP) comprises a variety of automated manufacturing techniques such as selective laser sintering (SLS), stereolithography, and three-dimensional printing (3DP), which use virtual 3D data sets to fabricate solid forms in a layer-by-layer technique. Despite a growing demand for (virtual) reconstruction models in daily forensic casework, maceration of the skull is frequently assigned to ensure haptic evidence presentation in the courtroom. Owing to the progress in the field of forensic radiology, 3D data sets of relevant cases are usually available to the forensic expert. Here, we present a first application of RP in forensic medicine using computed tomography scans for the fabrication of an SLS skull model in a case of fatal hammer impacts to the head. The report is intended to show that this method fully respects the dignity of the deceased and is consistent with medical ethics but nevertheless provides an excellent 3D impression of anatomical structures and injuries. PMID:21470229

  17. A Preliminary Approach to the Forensic Analysis of an Ultraportable ASUS Eee PC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shiralkar, Trupti; Lavine, Michael; Turnbull, Benjamin

    Subnotebooks, or ‘netbooks, are a relatively new consumer market but one that continues to grow significantly worldwide. The aim of this paper is to analyse one of the leading subnotebooks, the ‘ASUS Eee PC’ from a forensics perspective. Specifically, the work investigates current image creation methods for making image of Eee PCs Solid State Drive and it analyses forensically important artefacts.

  18. Qualitative Analysis of the Lived Experience of First-Time Nurse Responders in Disaster.

    PubMed

    Shipman, Sallie J; Stanton, Marietta P; Tomlinson, Stephen; Olivet, Linda; Graves, Ann; McKnight, Douglas; Speck, Patricia M

    2016-02-01

    HOW TO OBTAIN CONTACT HOURS BY READING THIS ISSUE Instructions: 1.2 contact hours will be awarded by Villanova University College of Nursing upon successful completion of this activity. A contact hour is a unit of measurement that denotes 60 minutes of an organized learning activity. This is a learner-based activity. Villanova University College of Nursing does not require submission of your answers to the quiz. A contact hour certificate will be awarded after you register, pay the registration fee, and complete the evaluation form online at http://goo.gl/gMfXaf. In order to obtain contact hours you must: 1. Read the article, "Qualitative Analysis of the Lived Experience of First-Time Nurse Responders in Disaster," found on pages 61-71, carefully noting any tables and other illustrative materials that are included to enhance your knowledge and understanding of the content. Be sure to keep track of the amount of time (number of minutes) you spend reading the article and completing the quiz. 2. Read and answer each question on the quiz. After completing all of the questions, compare your answers to those provided within this issue. If you have incorrect answers, return to the article for further study. 3. Go to the Villanova website to register for contact hour credit. You will be asked to provide your name, contact information, and a VISA, MasterCard, or Discover card number for payment of the $20.00 fee. Once you complete the online evaluation, a certificate will be automatically generated. This activity is valid for continuing education credit until January 31, 2019. CONTACT HOURS This activity is co-provided by Villanova University College of Nursing and SLACK Incorporated. Villanova University College of Nursing is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation. OBJECTIVES Describe the experiences of first-time nurse responders to actual disasters in community shelters or temporary medical clinics. Identify themes the first-time nurse responders suggest for a practical disaster curriculum for the generalist nurse. DISCLOSURE STATEMENT Neither the planners nor the authors have any conflicts of interest to disclose. The study purpose was to examine the reflections of the lived experiences of nurses in shelters or temporary community medical clinics responding for the first time to a civilian disaster. The disaster-nursing literature echoes the need for development of disaster content in the nursing curriculum. However, little thematic analysis-supporting curriculum from the lived experience of first-time responders exists in the literature. This study's purpose is to identify the essential thematic knowledge and skills necessary to provide care to disaster survivors in communities and for determining the themes necessary to formulate education in emergency preparedness curricula. A narrative inquiry, with a phenomenological analysis, to explore the lived experiences of nurses who responded once to a community disaster was the methodology used to identify themes. Thematic findings demonstrated a lack of prior knowledge about volunteering during a disaster response, that previous mass casualty exercises did not help with their actual responses, and that the participant RNs identified specific and assessment skills necessary for disasters. J Contin Educ Nurs. 2016;47(2):61-71. PMID:26840238

  19. A selection of some of Dr. McCrone's high and low profile cases in the forensic analysis of art.

    PubMed

    Stoney, David A

    2004-03-01

    Throughout Dr. McCrone's active professional career of over 60 years, he worked on many cases involving the forensic analysis of art. This is an overview of a small portion of these cases. Included (exposed as fakes) are the Shroud of Turin, the Vinland Map, Mayan pottery illustrations and Larionov pastels. Also included, with strong support for authentication, are three paintings attributed to Manet, Giorgione, and Leonardo da Vinci. PMID:15027547

  20. Forensic hair analysis to identify animal species on a case of pet animal abuse.

    PubMed

    Sato, Itaru; Nakaki, Shinichi; Murata, Koichi; Takeshita, Hiroshi; Mukai, Toshiji

    2010-05-01

    As part of an investigation of a case of pet animal abuse, we attempted to identify small mammalian species by morphological analysis and single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) typing of the cytochrome b gene using guard hairs as an analytical material. Guard hair samples from several species were measured for length, width, medulla formation, and cuticle scale pattern under a light microscope or scanning electron microscope. These samples were also analyzed for SNPs in the cytochrome b gene using a multiplex single-base primer extension reaction. Morphological analysis of cuticle scale pattern and medulla formation was able to discriminate ferret hairs from other hair samples that included rabbit, gerbil, degu, and Djungarian hamster. However, this also revealed a similarity of the guard hairs of the ferret (Mustela putorius furo) and Japanese weasel (Mustela itatsi). Although at three sites, the nucleotide color signals of SNPs in the cytochrome b gene could be used to discriminate completely among human, dog, and gerbil, the signals for cat, ferret, and Japanese weasel occurred at the same nucleotide sites. Unfortunately, no signals were obtained from degu, Djungarian hamster, and rabbit hairs. Although the discriminated hair samples were 100% identical to those of the ferret, there was only a 5% difference from Japanese weasel in the partial sequence of the cytochrome b gene. Construction of a database of mammalian hairs would be useful not only in forensic science, but also for investigating smuggling of endangered species in contravention of the Washington Convention. PMID:19921235

  1. Forensic analysis of Salvia divinorum using multivariate statistical procedures. Part I: discrimination from related Salvia species.

    PubMed

    Willard, Melissa A Bodnar; McGuffin, Victoria L; Smith, Ruth Waddell

    2012-01-01

    Salvia divinorum is a hallucinogenic herb that is internationally regulated. In this study, salvinorin A, the active compound in S. divinorum, was extracted from S. divinorum plant leaves using a 5-min extraction with dichloromethane. Four additional Salvia species (Salvia officinalis, Salvia guaranitica, Salvia splendens, and Salvia nemorosa) were extracted using this procedure, and all extracts were analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Differentiation of S. divinorum from other Salvia species was successful based on visual assessment of the resulting chromatograms. To provide a more objective comparison, the total ion chromatograms (TICs) were subjected to principal components analysis (PCA). Prior to PCA, the TICs were subjected to a series of data pretreatment procedures to minimize non-chemical sources of variance in the data set. Successful discrimination of S. divinorum from the other four Salvia species was possible based on visual assessment of the PCA scores plot. To provide a numerical assessment of the discrimination, a series of statistical procedures such as Euclidean distance measurement, hierarchical cluster analysis, Student's t tests, Wilcoxon rank-sum tests, and Pearson product moment correlation were also applied to the PCA scores. The statistical procedures were then compared to determine the advantages and disadvantages for forensic applications. PMID:22038586

  2. Population-Sequencing as a Biomarker of Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia pseudomallei Evolution through Microbial Forensic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Jakupciak, John P.; Wells, Jeffrey M.; Karalus, Richard J.; Pawlowski, David R.; Lin, Jeffrey S.; Feldman, Andrew B.

    2013-01-01

    Large-scale genomics projects are identifying biomarkers to detect human disease. B. pseudomallei and B. mallei are two closely related select agents that cause melioidosis and glanders. Accurate characterization of metagenomic samples is dependent on accurate measurements of genetic variation between isolates with resolution down to strain level. Often single biomarker sensitivity is augmented by use of multiple or panels of biomarkers. In parallel with single biomarker validation, advances in DNA sequencing enable analysis of entire genomes in a single run: population-sequencing. Potentially, direct sequencing could be used to analyze an entire genome to serve as the biomarker for genome identification. However, genome variation and population diversity complicate use of direct sequencing, as well as differences caused by sample preparation protocols including sequencing artifacts and mistakes. As part of a Department of Homeland Security program in bacterial forensics, we examined how to implement whole genome sequencing (WGS) analysis as a judicially defensible forensic method for attributing microbial sample relatedness; and also to determine the strengths and limitations of whole genome sequence analysis in a forensics context. Herein, we demonstrate use of sequencing to provide genetic characterization of populations: direct sequencing of populations. PMID:24455204

  3. Population-Sequencing as a Biomarker of Burkholderia mallei and Burkholderia pseudomallei Evolution through Microbial Forensic Analysis.

    PubMed

    Jakupciak, John P; Wells, Jeffrey M; Karalus, Richard J; Pawlowski, David R; Lin, Jeffrey S; Feldman, Andrew B

    2013-01-01

    Large-scale genomics projects are identifying biomarkers to detect human disease. B. pseudomallei and B. mallei are two closely related select agents that cause melioidosis and glanders. Accurate characterization of metagenomic samples is dependent on accurate measurements of genetic variation between isolates with resolution down to strain level. Often single biomarker sensitivity is augmented by use of multiple or panels of biomarkers. In parallel with single biomarker validation, advances in DNA sequencing enable analysis of entire genomes in a single run: population-sequencing. Potentially, direct sequencing could be used to analyze an entire genome to serve as the biomarker for genome identification. However, genome variation and population diversity complicate use of direct sequencing, as well as differences caused by sample preparation protocols including sequencing artifacts and mistakes. As part of a Department of Homeland Security program in bacterial forensics, we examined how to implement whole genome sequencing (WGS) analysis as a judicially defensible forensic method for attributing microbial sample relatedness; and also to determine the strengths and limitations of whole genome sequence analysis in a forensics context. Herein, we demonstrate use of sequencing to provide genetic characterization of populations: direct sequencing of populations. PMID:24455204

  4. Forensic signatures for Marburgviruses.

    PubMed

    Song, Jian; Wolinsky, Murray; Wren, Melinda; Burr, Tom; Li, Po-E; Doggett, Norman

    2013-12-10

    Marburgvirus is one of the most important hemorrhagic fever viruses with extremely high infectivity and fatality rate (~90%). It is transmitted easily in human populations through a respiratory route and therefore considered as a major biothreat agent. Although detection assays have been developed, no assay is available for forensic analysis. Here we report development of forensic assays for Marburgvirus. We performed detailed phylogenetic analysis of strains and isolates from all known Marburg virus outbreaks as well as from several laboratory strains and identified canonical SNPs for all major clades (outbreaks) and strains. TaqMan-MGB allelic discrimination assays targeting these SNPs were designed and experimentally screened against synthetic RNA templates and genomic RNAs. A total of 45 assays were validated to provide 100% coverage of the clades (outbreaks) and 91% at the strain level (21 out of the 23 targeted Marburgvirus strains) with built-in redundancy for increased robustness. Using these validated assays, we were able to provide accurate forensic analysis on 3 "unknown" Marburgviruses. These high-resolution forensic assays allow rapid and accurate genotyping of Marburgviruses for forensic investigations. PMID:24314539

  5. Forensics Investigator

    MedlinePlus

    ... to the investigation. They also prepare reports to document their findings and the laboratory techniques used. When criminal cases come to trial, forensic science technicians often provide testimony as expert witnesses, ...

  6. Forensic Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berry, Keith O.; Nigh, W. G.

    1973-01-01

    A course is described, which was given during an interim, with an enrollment of 41 students. The course involved an in-depth study of forensic science, involving students with the methodology of science. (DF)

  7. Application of micellar electrokinetic capillary chromatography to forensic analysis of barbiturates in biological fluids.

    PubMed

    Ferslew, K E; Hagardorn, A N; McCormick, W F

    1995-03-01

    Micellar electrokinetic capillary chromatography (MECC) is a form of capillary zone electrophoresis. Addition of a surfactant produces micelles in an aqueous/organic buffer. Separation of drugs is obtained via differences in the electrophoretic mobilities of the analytes within the capillary, resulting from their electrophoretic velocity and the electroosmotic flow of the buffer in a given electric field. The migration order is determined by the differential partitioning of the drugs between the micelles and the aqueous/organic phase. Barbiturates were extracted from various biological fluids at pH 4.5 with TOXI-TUBES B. MECC analyses were performed using a Waters Quanta 4000 Capillary Electrophoretic System with a 745 Data Module with a 75 microns x 60 cm capillary and an aqueous/organic buffer of 85% 10 mM borate, 10 mM phosphate, 100 mM sodium dodecyl sulfate and 15% acetonitrile at a pH of 8.5 with a voltage of 20 kV using ultraviolet absorption detection at 214 nm. Migration times were: phenobarbital, 7.78 min.; butalbital, 8.01 min.; butabarbital, 8.23 min.; mephobarbital (internal standard), 8.88 min.; amobarbital, 9.41 min.; pentobarbital, 10.03 min. and secobarbital, 10.79 min. Correlation coefficients (r) between peak areas and concentration ranges of 3 to 60 micrograms/mL were from 0.964 to 0.999. Coefficients of variation (CV) ranged from 2.6 to 8.6% between days and 2.3 to 9.8% within day. Application of this methodology to four forensic cases of butalbital intoxication detected concentrations of 0.7 to 12.7 micrograms/mL in blood; 0.8 to 1.9 micrograms/mL in vitreous humor and 1.5 to 7.6 micrograms/mL in urine. MECC is applicable to forensic analysis of barbiturates extracted from biological fluids. PMID:7602286

  8. UV-visible microscope spectrophotometric polarization and dichroism with increased discrimination power in forensic analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Purcell, Dale Kevin

    Microanalysis of transfer (Trace) evidence is the application of a microscope and microscopical techniques for the collection, observation, documentation, examination, identification, and discrimination of micrometer sized particles or domains. Microscope spectrophotometry is the union of microscopy and spectroscopy for microanalysis. Analytical microspectroscopy is the science of studying the emission, reflection, transmission, and absorption of electromagnetic radiation to determine the structure or chemical composition of microscopic-size materials. Microscope spectrophotometry instrument designs have evolved from monochromatic illumination which transmitted through the microscope and sample and then is detected by a photometer detector (photomultiplier tube) to systems in which broad-band (white light) illumination falls incident upon a sample followed by a non-scanning grating spectrometer equipped with a solid-state multi-element detector. Most of these small modern spectrometers are configured with either silicon based charged-couple device detectors (200-950 nm) or InGaAs based diode array detectors (850-2300 nm) with computerized data acquisition and signal processing being common. A focus of this research was to evaluate the performance characteristics of various modern forensic (UV-Vis) microscope photometer systems as well as review early model instrumental designs. An important focus of this research was to efficiently measure ultraviolet-visible spectra of microscopically small specimens for classification, differentiation, and possibly individualization. The first stage of the project consisted of the preparation of microscope slides containing neutral density filter reference materials, molecular fluorescence reference materials, and dichroic reference materials. Upon completion of these standard slide preparations analysis began with measurements in order to evaluate figures of merit for comparison of the instruments investigated. The figures of merit investigated included: 1) wavelength accuracy, 2) wavelength precision, 3) wavelength resolution stability, 4) photometric accuracy, 5) photometric precision, 6) photometric linearity, 7) photometric noise, and 8) short-term baseline stability. In addition, intrinsic instrument polarization effects were investigated to determine the impact of these properties on spectral interpretation and data quality. Finally, a set of recommendations were developed which describe instrument performance characteristics for microscope and spectrometer features and functions, and specific instrument parameters that must be controlled in order to acquire high quality data from an ultraviolet-visible forensic microscope spectrophotometer system for increased discrimination power.

  9. Forensic analysis of Salvia divinorum using multivariate statistical procedures. Part II: association of adulterated samples to S. divinorum.

    PubMed

    Willard, Melissa A Bodnar; McGuffin, Victoria L; Smith, Ruth Waddell

    2012-01-01

    Salvia divinorum is a plant material that is of forensic interest due to the hallucinogenic nature of the active ingredient, salvinorin A. In this study, S. divinorum was extracted and spiked onto four different plant materials (S. divinorum, Salvia officinalis, Cannabis sativa, and Nicotiana tabacum) to simulate an adulterated sample that might be encountered in a forensic laboratory. The adulterated samples were extracted and analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and the resulting total ion chromatograms were subjected to a series of pretreatment procedures that were used to minimize non-chemical sources of variance in the data set. The data were then analyzed using principal components analysis (PCA) to investigate association of the adulterated extracts to unadulterated S. divinorum. While association was possible based on visual assessment of the PCA scores plot, additional procedures including Euclidean distance measurement, hierarchical cluster analysis, Student's t tests, Wilcoxon rank-sum tests, and Pearson product moment correlation were also applied to the PCA scores to provide a statistical evaluation of the association observed. The advantages and limitations of each statistical procedure in a forensic context were compared and are presented herein. PMID:22160202

  10. Computer analysis of ATR-FTIR spectra of paint samples for forensic purposes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szafarska, Małgorzata; Woźniakiewicz, Michał; Pilch, Mariusz; Zięba-Palus, Janina; Kościelniak, Paweł

    2009-04-01

    A method of subtraction and normalization of IR spectra (MSN-IR) was developed and successfully applied to extract mathematically the pure paint spectrum from the spectrum of paint coat on different bases, both acquired by the Attenuated Total Reflectance Fourier Transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR) technique. The method consists of several stages encompassing several normalization and subtraction processes. The similarity of the spectrum obtained with the reference spectrum was estimated by means of the normalized Manhattan distance. The utility and performance of the method proposed were tested by examination of five different paints sprayed on plastic (polyester) foil and on fabric materials (cotton). It was found that the numerical algorithm applied is able - in contrast to other mathematical approaches conventionally used for the same aim - to reconstruct a pure paint IR spectrum effectively without a loss of chemical information provided. The approach allows the physical separation of a paint from a base to be avoided, hence a time and work-load of analysis to be considerably reduced. The results obtained prove that the method can be considered as a useful tool which can be applied to forensic purposes.

  11. Analysis of 11 tetrameric STRs in wild boars for forensic purposes.

    PubMed

    Caratti, Stefano; Rossi, Luca; Sona, Bruno; Origlia, Silvia; Viara, Silvana; Martano, Giuseppe; Torre, Carlo; Robino, Carlo

    2010-10-01

    STR profiling of animal species has a wide range of applications, including forensic identification, wildlife preservation, veterinary public health protection and food safety. We tested the efficacy of a multiplex PCR-based assay including 11 porcine-specific tetrameric STRs in a population sample of wild boars (n=142) originating from Piedmont (North West Italy). Multiple deviations from Hardy-Weinberg expectations were observed, mostly due to a reduction in observed heterozygosity indicative of a high degree of inbreeding. A value of θ of 0.046 and an inbreeding coefficient of 0.089 were estimated. Combined power of discrimination and probability of exclusion values for the STR panel were 0.9999999999996 and 0.99989. In order to test the suitability of the method for meat traceability purposes, a domestic pig reference sample (n=412), consisting of commercial lines commonly used in the meat production process, was also typed. A Bayesian cluster analysis carried out using the observed genotypes, showed a percentage of correct subspecies assignment of individual samples of 0.974 for wild boars and 0.991 for pigs, thus demonstrating the usefulness of the multiplex STR-typing system for discrimination purposes. PMID:20685189

  12. Analysis of Carbohydrate and Fatty Acid Marker Abundance in Ricin Toxin Preparations for Forensic Information

    SciTech Connect

    Colburn, Heather A.; Wunschel, David S.; Kreuzer-Martin, Helen W.; Moran, James J.; Antolick, Kathryn C.; Melville, Angela M.

    2010-07-15

    One challenge in the forensic analysis of ricin samples is determining the method and extent of sample preparation. Ricin purification from the source castor seeds is essentially a protein purification through removal of the non-protein fractions of the seed. Two major, non-protein constituents in the seed are the castor oil and carbohydrates. Ricinoleic acid is a relatively unique fatty acid in nature and is the most abundant component of castor oil, which comprises roughly half the seed weight. The carbohydrate component comprises roughly half of the remaining “mash” left after oil and hull removal. We used derivatization of carbohydrate and fatty acid markers followed by identification and quantification using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) to assess compositional changes in ricin samples purified by different methods. The loss of ricinoleic acid indicated steps for oil removal had occurred. Changes to the carbohydrate content of the sample were also observed following protein precipitation. The differential loss of arabinose relative to mannose indicated removal of the major carbohydrate fraction of the seed and enrichment of the protein content. Taken together, these changes in fatty acid and carbohydrate abundance are indicative of the preparation method used for each sample.

  13. Scanning electron microscopic analysis of incinerated teeth: An aid to forensic identification

    PubMed Central

    Pol, Chetan A; Gosavi, Suchitra R

    2014-01-01

    Background: Forensic dental identification of victims involved in fire accidents is often a complex and challenging endeavor. Knowledge of the charred human dentition and residues of restorative material can help in the recognition of bodies burned beyond recognition. Aim: To observe the effects of predetermined temperatures on healthy unrestored teeth and different restorative materials in restored teeth, by scanning electron microscope, for the purpose of identification. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted on 135 extracted teeth, which were divided into four groups. Group 1-healthy unrestored teeth, group 2-teeth restored with all ceramic crowns, group 3-teeth restored with class I composite resin and group 4-teeth restored with class I glass ionomer cement (GIC). Results: The scanning electron microscope is useful in the analysis of burned teeth, as it gives fine structural details, requires only a small sample and does not destroy the already fragile specimen. Conclusion: Scanning electron microscope can be a useful tool for the characterization and study of severely burnt teeth for victim identification. PMID:24959034

  14. Coding region SNP analysis to enhance dog mtDNA discrimination power in forensic casework.

    PubMed

    Verscheure, Sophie; Backeljau, Thierry; Desmyter, Stijn

    2015-01-01

    The high population frequencies of three control region haplotypes contribute to the low discrimination power of the dog mtDNA control region. It also diminishes the evidential power of a match with one of these haplotypes in forensic casework. A mitochondrial genome study of 214 Belgian dogs suggested 26 polymorphic coding region sites that successfully resolved dogs with the three most frequent control region haplotypes. In this study, three SNP assays were developed to determine the identity of the 26 informative sites. The control region of 132 newly sampled dogs was sequenced and added to the study of 214 dogs. The assays were applied to 58 dogs of the haplotypes of interest, which confirmed their suitability for enhancing dog mtDNA discrimination power. In the Belgian population study of 346 dogs, the set of 26 sites divided the dogs into 25 clusters of mtGenome sequences with substantially lower population frequency estimates than their control region sequences. In case of a match with one of the three control region haplotypes, using these three SNP assays in conjunction with control region sequencing would augment the exclusion probability of dog mtDNA analysis from 92.9% to 97.0%. PMID:25299153

  15. Raman spectroscopy and capillary electrophoresis applied to forensic colour inkjet printer inks analysis.

    PubMed

    Król, Małgorzata; Karoly, Agnes; Kościelniak, Paweł

    2014-09-01

    Forensic laboratories are increasingly engaged in the examination of fraudulent documents, and what is important, in many cases these are inkjet-printed documents. That is why systematic approaches to inkjet printer inks comparison and identification have been carried out by both non-destructive and destructive methods. In this study, micro-Raman spectroscopy and capillary electrophoresis (CE) were applied to the analysis of colour inkjet printer inks. Micro-Raman spectroscopy was used to study the chemical composition of colour inks in situ on a paper surface. It helps to characterize and differentiate inkjet inks, and can be used to create a spectra database of inks taken from different cartridge brands and cartridge numbers. Capillary electrophoresis in micellar electrophoretic capillary chromatography mode was applied to separate colour and colourless components of inks, enabling group identification of those components which occur in a sufficient concentration (giving intensive peaks). Finally, on the basis of the obtained results, differentiation of the analysed inks was performed. Twenty-three samples of inkjet printer inks were examined and the discriminating power (DP) values for both presented methods were established in the routine work of experts during the result interpretation step. DP was found to be 94.0% (Raman) and 95.6% (CE) when all the analysed ink samples were taken into account, and it was 96.7% (Raman) and 98.4% (CE), when only cartridges with different index numbers were considered. PMID:25062531

  16. Separation of sperm and epithelial cells based on the hydrodynamic effect for forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Weiran; Chen, Weixing; Liu, Ran; Ou, Yuan; Liu, Haoran; Xie, Lan; Lu, Ying; Li, Caixia; Li, Bin; Cheng, Jing

    2015-07-01

    In sexual assault cases, forensic samples are a mixture of sperm from the perpetrator and epithelial cells from the victim. To obtain an independent short tandem repeat (STR) profile of the perpetrator, sperm cells must be separated from the mixture of cells. However, the current method used in crime laboratories, namely, differential extraction, is a time-consuming and labor-intensive process. To achieve a rapid and automated sample pretreatment process, we fabricated a microdevice for hydrodynamic and size-based separation of sperm and epithelial cells. When cells in suspension were introduced into the device's microfluidic channels, they were forced to flow along different streamlines and into different outlets due to their different diameters. With the proposed microdevice, sperm can be separated within a short period of time (0.5 h for a 50-μl mock sample). The STR profiles of the products in the sperm outlet reservoir demonstrated that a highly purified male DNA fraction could be obtained (94.0% male fraction). This microdevice is of low-cost and can be easily integrated with other subsequent analysis units, providing great potential in the process of analyzing sexual assault evidence as well as in other areas requiring cell sorting. PMID:26392829

  17. Embedding Forensic Capabilities into Networks: Addressing Inefficiencies in Digital Forensics Investigations

    SciTech Connect

    Endicott-Popovsky, Barbara; Frincke, Deb A.

    2006-08-01

    A typical incident response pits technicians against networks that aren't prepared forensically. [1, 2] If practitioners do consider collecting network forensic data, they face a choice between expending extraordinary effort (time and money) collecting forensically sound data, or simply restoring the network as quickly as possible. In this context, the concept of organizational network forensic readiness has emerged. This paper proposes a methodology for "operationalizing" organizational network forensic readiness. The methodology, and the theoretical analysis that led to its development, are offered as a conceptual framework for thinking about more efficient, proactive approaches to digital forensics on networks.

  18. Analysis of seismic disaster failure mechanism and dam-break simulation of high arch dam

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jingkui; Zhang, Liaojun

    2014-06-01

    Based on a Chinese national high arch dam located in a meizoseismal region, a nonlinear numerical analysis model of the damage and failure process of a dam-foundation system is established by employing a 3-D deformable distinct element code (3DEC) and its re-development functions. The proposed analysis model considers the dam-foundation-reservoir coupling effect, influence of nonlinear contact in the opening and closing of the dam seam surface and abutment rock joints during strong earthquakes, and radiation damping of far field energy dissipation according to the actual workability state of an arch dam. A safety assessment method and safety evaluation criteria is developed to better understand the arch dam system disaster process from local damage to ultimate failure. The dynamic characteristics, disaster mechanism, limit bearing capacity and the entire failure process of a high arch dam under a strong earthquake are then analyzed. Further, the seismic safety of the arch dam is evaluated according to the proposed evaluation criteria and safety assessment method. As a result, some useful conclusions are obtained for some aspects of the disaster mechanism and failure process of an arch dam. The analysis method and conclusions may be useful in engineering practice.

  19. Forensic odontological observations in the victims of DANA air crash

    PubMed Central

    Obafunwa, John Oladapo; Ogunbanjo, Victor Olabode; Ogunbanjo, Ogunbiyi Babatunde; Soyemi, Sunday Sokunle; Faduyile, Francis Adedayo

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Forensic odontology or forensic dentistry is that aspect of forensic science that uses the application of dental science for the identification of unknown human remains and bite marks. Deaths resulting from mass disasters such as plane crash or fire incidence have always been given mass burial in Nigeria. This was obviously due to the fact that Forensic Pathologists whose roles involve disaster victim identification were not available at that time. However, in the DANA air crash in Lagos in 2012, the Forensic pathologist and dental teams were invited for the first time to identify the victims. The objectives of this paper are to identify the extent of victims’ identification using Forensic odontology alone and its combination with DNA analysis. It also presents the pattern of fractures seen in the mandible and maxilla of the victims. Methods The bodies were dissected using following the standard protocol dissection. Prior to this all the victims had Dental Radiological Examination. The oral cavities were exposed after which the Odontology team was invited for photographing first, followed by dental charting. Fractures of the mandible, maxilla including the anatomical regions were all recorded and photographed. Dental prosthesis, restorations, crowns and bridge and other findings were also noted, recorded and compared with ante mortem records where available. Results A total of152 bodies were recovered from the crash site while 148 victims were eventually identified through a combination of DNA analysis and forensic odontology. This represented 97.4%. Forensic odontology was the primary identifier in 10%. There were no fingerprinting information in this country at present therefore, it could not be used. A total of 89 (60%) were males while females accounted for 59(40%). This gives a ratio of 1.5:1. Most of the victims were in the age group 30-49years; this represented 52% of the victims while the least involved age groups were victims above 60 years of age which accounted for only 4.7%. Mandibular fractures were seen in 29 victims, maxilla in 15, combined mandibullo/maxillary in 15 victims, while 89victims had nojaw fracture. The most common area of fracture in the mandible was the body which accounted for 36.4%, closely followed byparasymphysealregion 31.9%, symphyseal 22.7% and the angle 9.0%. The most common fracture in the maxillae was palatal split fracture which accounted for 52%, this was followed by pterygoid 24%, alveolar 8% and multiple locations 16%. Conclusion A combination of DNA analysis and forensic odontology was able to identify a total of 148 victims out of 152 representing 97.4%. Forensic odontology was the primary identifier in only 10%. In the latter, poor and lack of dental records were responsible for this very low figure. The most common area of fracture in the mandible was th ebody which accounted for 36.4%, while that of the maxillae was palatal fracture which accounted for 52%. Padding of the back of the seats in the aircraft should be canvassed for to provide Cushing effect for passengers. PMID:26213597

  20. A collaborative approach for incorporating forensic case data into crime investigation using criminal intelligence analysis and visualisation.

    PubMed

    Rossy, Quentin; Ribaux, Olivier

    2014-03-01

    There is an increasing awareness that the articulation of forensic science and criminal investigation is critical to the resolution of crimes. However, models and methods to support an effective collaboration between the partners are still poorly expressed or even lacking. Three propositions are borrowed from crime intelligence methods in order to bridge this gap: (a) the general intelligence process, (b) the analyses of investigative problems along principal perspectives: entities and their relationships, time and space, quantitative aspects and (c) visualisation methods as a mode of expression of a problem in these dimensions. Indeed, in a collaborative framework, different kinds of visualisations integrating forensic case data can play a central role for supporting decisions. Among them, link-charts are scrutinised for their abilities to structure and ease the analysis of a case by describing how relevant entities are connected. However, designing an informative chart that does not bias the reasoning process is not straightforward. Using visualisation as a catalyser for a collaborative approach integrating forensic data thus calls for better specifications. PMID:24630325

  1. Discourses of aggression in forensic mental health: a critical discourse analysis of mental health nursing staff records.

    PubMed

    Berring, Lene L; Pedersen, Liselotte; Buus, Niels

    2015-12-01

    Managing aggression in mental health hospitals is an important and challenging task for clinical nursing staff. A majority of studies focus on the perspective of clinicians, and research mainly depicts aggression by referring to patient-related factors. This qualitative study investigates how aggression is communicated in forensic mental health nursing records. The aim of the study was to gain insight into the discursive practices used by forensic mental health nursing staff when they record observed aggressive incidents. Textual accounts were extracted from the Staff Observation Aggression Scale-Revised (SOAS-R), and Fairclough's critical discourse analysis was used to identify short narrative entries depicting patients and staffs in typical ways. The narratives contained descriptions of complex interactions between patient and staff that were linked to specific circumstances surrounding the patient. These antecedents, combined with the aggression incident itself, created stereotyping representations of forensic psychiatric patients as deviant, unpredictable and dangerous. Patient and staff identities were continually (re)produced by an automatic response from the staff that was solely focused on the patient's behavior. Such response might impede implementation of new strategies for managing aggression. PMID:26138668

  2. The joint return period analysis of natural disasters based on monitoring and statistical modeling of multidimensional hazard factors.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xueqin; Li, Ning; Yuan, Shuai; Xu, Ning; Shi, Wenqin; Chen, Weibin

    2015-12-15

    As a random event, a natural disaster has the complex occurrence mechanism. The comprehensive analysis of multiple hazard factors is important in disaster risk assessment. In order to improve the accuracy of risk analysis and forecasting, the formation mechanism of a disaster should be considered in the analysis and calculation of multi-factors. Based on the consideration of the importance and deficiencies of multivariate analysis of dust storm disasters, 91 severe dust storm disasters in Inner Mongolia from 1990 to 2013 were selected as study cases in the paper. Main hazard factors from 500-hPa atmospheric circulation system, near-surface meteorological system, and underlying surface conditions were selected to simulate and calculate the multidimensional joint return periods. After comparing the simulation results with actual dust storm events in 54years, we found that the two-dimensional Frank Copula function showed the better fitting results at the lower tail of hazard factors and that three-dimensional Frank Copula function displayed the better fitting results at the middle and upper tails of hazard factors. However, for dust storm disasters with the short return period, three-dimensional joint return period simulation shows no obvious advantage. If the return period is longer than 10years, it shows significant advantages in extreme value fitting. Therefore, we suggest the multivariate analysis method may be adopted in forecasting and risk analysis of serious disasters with the longer return period, such as earthquake and tsunami. Furthermore, the exploration of this method laid the foundation for the prediction and warning of other nature disasters. PMID:26327640

  3. Postmortem bone marrow analysis in forensic science: study of 73 cases and review of the literature.

    PubMed

    Tattoli, Lucia; Tsokos, Michael; Sautter, Julia; Anagnostopoulos, Joannis; Maselli, Eloisa; Ingravallo, Giuseppe; Delia, Mario; Solarino, Biagio

    2014-01-01

    In forensic sciences, bone marrow (BM) is an alternative matrix in postmortem toxicology because of its good resistance to autolysis and contaminations. Nevertheless, few studies have been focused on postmortem BM morphological changes after pathological stimuli. We examined 73 BM samples from forensic autopsies; causes of death were both natural and traumatic. BM samples were collected from the sternum by needle aspiration and biopsy; in selected cases, immunohistochemistry was performed. Few autolytic changes were found; BM cellularity decreased with increasing age and postmortem interval. Notable cell changes were detected in 45 cases (61.64%): neoplastic (n=4), and non-neoplastic BM findings (n=41), including multiorgan failure/sepsis (n=26), myelodisplastic-like conditions (n=11), and anaphylactic reactions (n=4). The results showed that BM cellularity supported circumstantial and autopsy findings, suggesting that BM samples could be a useful tool in forensic science applications. PMID:24378305

  4. Usefulness and limitations of postmortem computed tomography in forensic analysis of gunshot injuries: Three case reports.

    PubMed

    Usui, Akihito; Kawasumi, Yusuke; Hosokai, Yoshiyuki; Kozakai, Masataka; Saito, Haruo; Funayama, Masato

    2016-01-01

    Gunshot injury has always been an important field of investigation in postmortem forensic radiology. The localization and retrieval of the bullet and of potentially important fragments are vital to these cases. Using postmortem multidetector-row computed tomography (MDCT) prior to forensic autopsy, we sought to illustrate the importance of this modality in the noninvasive characterization of gunshot wounds. We obtained and analyzed MDCT images in three cases of gunshot wounds (accidental close-range shotgun shooting, suicidal contact gunshot to the head and accidental long-range buckshot shooting). We discuss the value of postmortem MDCT findings in gunshot wound cases by comparing with forensic autopsy findings in Japan, a developing country with miserably low autopsy rate. PMID:26832386

  5. The Development of a Generic Framework for the Forensic Analysis of SCADA and Process Control Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slay, Jill; Sitnikova, Elena

    There is continuing interest in researching generic security architectures and strategies for managing SCADA and process control systems. Documentation from various countries on IT security does now begin to recommendations for security controls for (federal) information systems which include connected process control systems. Little or no work exists in the public domain which takes a big picture approach to the issue of developing a generic or generalisable approach to SCADA and process control system forensics. The discussion raised in this paper is that before one can develop solutions to the problem of SCADA forensics, a good understanding of the forensic computing process, and the range of technical and procedural issues subsumed with in this process, need to be understood, and also agreed, by governments, industry and academia.

  6. Decision-theoretic analysis of forensic sampling criteria using bayesian decision networks.

    PubMed

    Biedermann, A; Bozza, S; Garbolino, P; Taroni, F

    2012-11-30

    Sampling issues represent a topic of ongoing interest to the forensic science community essentially because of their crucial role in laboratory planning and working protocols. For this purpose, forensic literature described thorough (bayesian) probabilistic sampling approaches. These are now widely implemented in practice. They allow, for instance, to obtain probability statements that parameters of interest (e.g., the proportion of a seizure of items that present particular features, such as an illegal substance) satisfy particular criteria (e.g., a threshold or an otherwise limiting value). Currently, there are many approaches that allow one to derive probability statements relating to a population proportion, but questions on how a forensic decision maker--typically a client of a forensic examination or a scientist acting on behalf of a client--ought actually to decide about a proportion or a sample size, remained largely unexplored to date. The research presented here intends to address methodology from decision theory that may help to cope usefully with the wide range of sampling issues typically encountered in forensic science applications. The procedures explored in this paper enable scientists to address a variety of concepts such as the (net) value of sample information, the (expected) value of sample information or the (expected) decision loss. All of these aspects directly relate to questions that are regularly encountered in casework. Besides probability theory and bayesian inference, the proposed approach requires some additional elements from decision theory that may increase the efforts needed for practical implementation. In view of this challenge, the present paper will emphasise the merits of graphical modelling concepts, such as decision trees and bayesian decision networks. These can support forensic scientists in applying the methodology in practice. How this may be achieved is illustrated with several examples. The graphical devices invoked here also serve the purpose of supporting the discussion of the similarities, differences and complementary aspects of existing bayesian probabilistic sampling criteria and the decision-theoretic approach proposed throughout this paper. PMID:23031501

  7. [Development of forensic thanatology through the prism of analysis of postmortem protocols collected at the Department of Forensic Medicine, Jagiellonian University].

    PubMed

    Konopka, Tomasz

    2011-01-01

    When assessed based on the analysis of postmortem protocols, the successes of forensic thanatology appear to differ from those that might be assumed using as the foundation a review of publications and textbooks. The greatest achievements date back to as early as the 18th and 19th centuries, when the morphological changes observed in the majority of types of deaths resulting from disease-associated and traumatic causes were described. Within the past 130 years, however, or in other words, in the period when autopsy protocols were written that are today collected in the archives of the Krakow Department of Forensic Medicine, the causes and mechanisms of death became understood even when the said factors were associated with discrete postmortem changes only or no no such changes whatsoever were left. At the end of the 19th century and for a long time afterwards, a difficult problem was posed by sudden deaths, where the postmortem examinations demonstrated solely atherosclerosis and the cause of death was described as "heart palsy". As it turned out, a great portion of such deaths represented individuals with myocardial infarction; in spite of its evident macroscopic presentation, the diagnostic management of the disease was progressing very slowly. Myocardial infarction, known at least since 1912, was associated by forensic medicine with the phenomenon of sudden death only in the forties, and the ability to detect myocardial infarction in practice developed only in the fifties of the last century. The achievement of the present dissertation is the formulation of a theory ascribing such a long delay in macroscopic diagnostics of myocardial infarction to forensic medicine specialists being attached to and fond of employing the "in situ" autopsy technique, which was unfavorable from the viewpoint of heart examination, since the organ was not dissected free and removed from the body in the course of a postmortem examination. When autopsies started to concentrate on hearts dissected free from large vessels, within several years, the number of diagnosed myocardial infarctions increased several times, what gave rise to a theory of a myocardial infarction epidemics formulated in some centers. A proof supporting the theory postulated by the author is a sudden increase in the number of deaths resulting from pulmonary embolism observed in the same several-year period; this diagnosis was also not facilitated by the "in situ" autopsy technique. Another cause of death, which - although undoubtedly common - was for years interpreted as "heart palsy" was alcohol poisoning. Evolution of methods used in chemical examinations for the presence of alcohol, and especially the use of blood tests rather than gastric contents tests allowed in time for determining alcohol poisoning as the cause of death and demonstrated the true extent of the phenomenon. Here, a milestone was the introduction of the Widmark method, what in turn resulted in changes in the toxicology theory, such as for example the use of a new term of "lethal concentration" in addition to the formerly employed notion of a "lethal dose", which is useless in the case of alcohol. Of lesser importance with respect to the number of cases, but of much greater significance in view of its association with homicides were the achievements in diagnostic management of strangulation. Choking and strangulation, as well as hanging--in spite of the fact that their fundamental features were known as early as in the 19th century--were really understood and the ability to diagnose these phenomena was achieved only in the interwar period. Such a long delay resulted from the autopsy technique that did not include examination of the organs situated in the neck, as well as from difficulties in acquiring experience in examining the type of homicide that was very uncommon. On the other hand, for many years, the erroneous theory of the fluidity of blood in a corpse as an indicator of violent strangulation resulted in dubious opinions on strangling by blocking the respiratory orifices of the victim, especially in cases of infanticides. Another erroneous theory, which was obligatory in forensic thanatology, was the theory of thymolymphatic state, which used thymic hypertrophy to explain deaths of young individuals resulting from a small injury or even strong emotion. Statistical tests and development of general medicine allowed for disproving the theory. In the diagnostics management of death from hypothermia, despite the fact that its most important features--Wischnewski spots and the loss of liver glycogen--had been known for a long time, they were regarded useless for several score years. At this time, cases of death from hypothermia were included into the category of "heart palsy". Despite several changes of the authorities, a review of autopsy protocols prepared in the Krakow Department of Forensic Medicine provided the author with a wealth of information of significant historical value. Protocols dating back to the period of Nazi occupation allowed for documenting and analyzing the types of torture employed by the Gestapo, but also for discovering a surprisingly large number of postmortem examinations of bodies of occupation functionaries who were sentenced to death by the Polish Underground State. After World War II, the Department examined numerous victims originating from both sides of skirmishes fought at the time by the then authorities and the armed underground movement, or even individuals murdered in the course of interrogations. The archives of autopsy protocols became a valuable source helpful in estimating the number of victims of the Soviet Army that was stationed in Poland, and later provided the only supply of information needed for evaluation of the number of fatal accidents among the builders of the Krakow district of Nowa Huta. Based on the autopsy protocols it may be concluded that the number of victims of anti-Jewish riots that sparked off in Krakow soon after World War II was over, was most likely lower than that assessed by the historians; on the other hand, the number of victims of similar riots occurring after World War I was higher than the historians believed. A great span of time over which the protocols were written allowed for following some socioeconomic changes. In the period before Poland's regaining independence, a significant social problem was posed by deaths of infants entrusted to foster care to "angel makers" After independence was regained, a similar problem emerged, consisting of deaths of young females due to complications of illegal abortions. In the post-war period, such a social problem was found in deaths due to fatal alcohol poisoning; the annual number of such cases increased almost tenfold within the past 50 years. In addition to obvious cases associated with the war, the Nazi occupation was characterized by a sudden, manifold increase in the number of methanol poisonings and an unexpectedly high increase in the number of victims of fatal traffic road accidents, especially those involving trains and streetcars. Over the past 130 years, there were significant changes in the selection of poisons used for suicidal purposes. In the beginning of the analyzed period, suicides were committed by ingesting caustic substances that damaged parenchymatous organs--these poisons were very brutal in their action, but easy to detect. As new pharmaceuticals--central nervous system depressants--were being introduced to therapeutic management, they gradually replaced caustic and parenchymatous poisons. In contrast to the early phase of the analyzed period, poisoning with such medications cannot be detected on autopsy, yet their introduction promoted the development of forensic toxicology. Nevertheless, for several score years, the heaviest toll was taken by carbon monoxide from the municipal gasworks, which appeared in 1905 and disappeared in 1982, killing as many as in excess of 50 individuals per year. In the collection of more than 60 thousand autopsy protocols, the author managed to find hitherto unknown, interesting cases, e.g. that describing a victim of a fatal accident in a stone quarry, witnessed by Karol Wojtyła during WWII, a victim of an unknown assassination attempt on the life of Bolesław Bierut, as well as protocols of postmortem examinations of bodies of the People's Republic of Poland intelligence agents who died while posted abroad. PMID:22393873

  8. Examination of mobile phones in a university forensic lab environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luttenberger, Silas; Kröger, Knut; Creutzburg, Reiner

    2011-06-01

    The aim of this article is to show forensic investigation methods for mobile phones to students in a university forensic lab environment. Students have to learn the usefulness of forensic procedures to ensure evidence collection, evidence preservation, forensic analysis, and reporting. Open source tools as well as commercial forensic tools for forensic investigation of modern mobile (smart) phones are used. It is demonstrated how important data stored in the mobile device are investigated. Different scenarios of investigations are presented that are well-suited for forensics lab work in university.

  9. The construction and periodicity analysis of natural disaster database of Alxa area based on Chinese local records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Zheng; Mingzhong, Tian; Hengli, Wang

    2010-05-01

    Chinese hand-written local records were originated from the first century. Generally, these local records include geography, evolution, customs, education, products, people, historical sites, as well as writings of an area. Through such endeavors, the information of the natural materials of China nearly has had no "dark ages" in the evolution of its 5000-year old civilization. A compilation of all meaningful historical data of natural-disasters taken place in Alxa of inner-Mongolia, the second largest desert in China, is used here for the construction of a 500-year high resolution database. The database is divided into subsets according to the types of natural-disasters like sand-dust storm, drought events, cold wave, etc. Through applying trend, correlation, wavelet, and spectral analysis on these data, we can estimate the statistically periodicity of different natural-disasters, detect and quantify similarities and patterns of the periodicities of these records, and finally take these results in aggregate to find a strong and coherent cyclicity through the last 500 years which serves as the driving mechanism of these geological hazards. Based on the periodicity obtained from the above analysis, the paper discusses the probability of forecasting natural-disasters and the suitable measures to reduce disaster losses through history records. Keyword: Chinese local records; Alxa; natural disasters; database; periodicity analysis

  10. Forensic Applications of LIBS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hark, Richard R.; East, Lucille J.

    Forensic science is broadly defined as the application of science to matters of the law. Practitioners typically use multidisciplinary scientific techniques for the analysis of physical evidence in an attempt to establish or exclude an association between a suspect and the scene of a crime.

  11. Analysis of suspected wildlife crimes submitted for forensic examinations in Scotland.

    PubMed

    Millins, Caroline; Howie, Fiona; Everitt, Charles; Shand, Michael; Lamm, Catherine

    2014-09-01

    This study describes the occurrence of suspected wildlife crimes submitted for forensic examination in Scotland in 2010. The study aims were to determine which types of crimes were committed, which species were targeted, and the outcome of investigations, in order to assess the contribution of forensic examinations in the prosecution of wildlife crimes. Information on suspected wildlife crimes submitted between January 1 and December 31, 2010 to the SAC Consulting: Veterinary Services Disease Surveillance Centers, Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture, and to the University of Glasgow, was used. The location of suspected crimes, the species targeted, cause of death, and types of the 188 submitted wildlife crimes were summarized. More information regarding cases involving birds were submitted than cases involving mammals, and included 114 raptors, 14 waterfowl, and 22 "other bird species." Mammal cases (n = 38) included 12 badgers, 8 foxes, 7 deer, 4 hares, and 7 "other mammals." The cause of death was determined in 124 suspected crimes; malicious or accidental trauma was the most likely cause of death in 72, and 33 were poisoned. Forensic evidence supporting criminal activity was found in 53 cases, and poisoning was the most frequent crime recorded. At least five individuals were successfully prosecuted, representing 2.7 % of submissions. It was challenging to track cases from submission through to prosecution and laboratories conducting forensic investigations were often not informed of the outcome of prosecutions or court decisions. PMID:24935435

  12. Forensic dentistry joins DNA analysis as important tool for police work.

    PubMed Central

    Tempelman-Kluit, A

    1995-01-01

    A Vancouver dentist who works as a teacher, researcher and administrator at the University of British Columbia has a unique extracurricular interest. Dr. David Sweet, one of four forensic odontologists in Canada, has put names to unidentified bodies and the remains of car-crash victims, helped convict child abusers and provided evidence in robbery cases. Images p662-a PMID:7641165

  13. A Meta-Analysis of the Impact of Forensics and Communication Education on Critical Thinking.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Allen, Mike; Berkowitz, Sandra; Hunt, Steve; Louden, Allan

    1999-01-01

    Finds that communication-skills instruction generates (using the Binomial Effect Size Display) a 44% increase in critical-thinking ability. Finds that forensic participation demonstrated the largest positive impact on critical-thinking improvement, but that all communication skills experiences demonstrated significant improvement. (SR)

  14. Enhanced Genetic Analysis of Single Human Bioparticles Recovered by Simplified Micromanipulation from Forensic ‘Touch DNA’ Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Farash, Katherine; Hanson, Erin K.; Ballantyne, Jack

    2015-01-01

    DNA profiles can be obtained from ‘touch DNA’ evidence, which comprises microscopic traces of human biological material. Current methods for the recovery of trace DNA employ cotton swabs or adhesive tape to sample an area of interest. However, such a ‘blind-swabbing’ approach will co-sample cellular material from the different individuals, even if the individuals’ cells are located in geographically distinct locations on the item. Thus, some of the DNA mixtures encountered in touch DNA samples are artificially created by the swabbing itself. In some instances, a victim’s DNA may be found in significant excess thus masking any potential perpetrator’s DNA. In order to circumvent the challenges with standard recovery and analysis methods, we have developed a lower cost, ‘smart analysis’ method that results in enhanced genetic analysis of touch DNA evidence. We describe an optimized and efficient micromanipulation recovery strategy for the collection of bio-particles present in touch DNA samples, as well as an enhanced amplification strategy involving a one-step 5 µl microvolume lysis/STR amplification to permit the recovery of STR profiles from the bio-particle donor(s). The use of individual or few (i.e., “clumps”) bioparticles results in the ability to obtain single source profiles. These procedures represent alternative enhanced techniques for the isolation and analysis of single bioparticles from forensic touch DNA evidence. While not necessary in every forensic investigation, the method could be highly beneficial for the recovery of a single source perpetrator DNA profile in cases involving physical assault (e.g., strangulation) that may not be possible using standard analysis techniques. Additionally, the strategies developed here offer an opportunity to obtain genetic information at the single cell level from a variety of other non-forensic trace biological material. PMID:25867046

  15. What is the cost of a life in a disaster? - Examples, Practice and Global Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daniell, James; Kunz-Plapp, Tina; Schaefer, Andreas; Wenzel, Friedemann; Khazai, Bijan

    2015-04-01

    An analysis is presented based on historical evidence and global exposure metrics using the CATDAT Socioeconomic databases, in order to create a global distribution of the cost of life in a disaster using various metrics. Casualty insurance models require a value of life & mitigation and cost-benefit studies require a value of life in order to make decisions and set premiums. Although this is a contentious concept, there are two general approaches to human life costing: the first is based on human capital which looks at the production capacity and potential output as a proxy for future earning; the second looks at willingness to pay which estimates people's value on reducing risk and compensation payouts. A combination approach is used. For each of the 245 nations, a value of life is estimated using the following parameters:- (1) Age of people in a country using the life expectancy and distribution data in CATDAT (2) Output of the economy and wage distribution (3) Household and community interactions (4) Lost quality of life The range of statistical life costs are examined globally from different sources, with the range of a life value being from 10,000 up to in the order of 10 million between different countries. The difference of the cost for a fatality vs. that of a severe injury is also discussed with a severe injury often having higher costs than a fatality for loss purposes. The losses in terms of historical disasters are looked at and examined with the percentage of life cost shown as a proportion of total losses. The losses of a future major earthquake in a low seismicity region show some of the largest potential life cost losses with that of a M6.8 in Adelaide, Australia; having around 160 billion in life costs (25,000 deaths, 15,000 severe injuries). This study has benefits post-disaster for quantification of human capital losses in major disasters, and pre-disaster for the analysis of insurance and mitigation options.

  16. A Comparative Analysis of Disaster Risk, Vulnerability and Resilience Composite Indicators

    PubMed Central

    Beccari, Benjamin

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: In the past decade significant attention has been given to the development of tools that attempt to measure the vulnerability, risk or resilience of communities to disasters. Particular attention has been given to the development of composite indices to quantify these concepts mirroring their deployment in other fields such as sustainable development. Whilst some authors have published reviews of disaster vulnerability, risk and resilience composite indicator methodologies, these have been of a limited nature. This paper seeks to dramatically expand these efforts by analysing 106 composite indicator methodologies to understand the breadth and depth of practice. Methods: An extensive search of the academic and grey literature was undertaken for composite indicator and scorecard methodologies that addressed multiple/all hazards; included social and economic aspects of risk, vulnerability or resilience; were sub-national in scope; explained the method and variables used; focussed on the present-day; and, had been tested or implemented. Information on the index construction, geographic areas of application, variables used and other relevant data was collected and analysed. Results: Substantial variety in construction practices of composite indicators of risk, vulnerability and resilience were found. Five key approaches were identified in the literature, with the use of hierarchical or deductive indices being the most common. Typically variables were chosen by experts, came from existing statistical datasets and were combined by simple addition with equal weights. A minimum of 2 variables and a maximum of 235 were used, although approximately two thirds of methodologies used less than 40 variables. The 106 methodologies used 2298 unique variables, the most frequently used being common statistical variables such as population density and unemployment rate. Classification of variables found that on average 34% of the variables used in each methodology related to the social environment, 25% to the disaster environment, 20% to the economic environment, 13% to the built environment, 6% to the natural environment and 3% were other indices. However variables specifically measuring action to mitigate or prepare for disasters only comprised 12%, on average, of the total number of variables in each index. Only 19% of methodologies employed any sensitivity or uncertainty analysis and in only a single case was this comprehensive. Discussion: A number of potential limitations of the present state of practice and how these might impact on decision makers are discussed. In particular the limited deployment of sensitivity and uncertainty analysis and the low use of direct measures of disaster risk, vulnerability and resilience could significantly limit the quality and reliability of existing methodologies. Recommendations for improvements to indicator development and use are made, as well as suggested future research directions to enhance the theoretical and empirical knowledge base for composite indicator development. PMID:27066298

  17. Semblance analysis to assess GPR data from a five-year forensic study of simulated clandestine graves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Booth, Adam D.; Pringle, Jamie K.

    2016-02-01

    Ground penetrating radar (GPR) surveys have proven useful for locating clandestine graves in a number of forensic searches. There has been extensive research into the geophysical monitoring of simulated clandestine graves in different burial scenarios and ground conditions. Whilst these studies have been used to suggest optimum dominant radar frequencies, the data themselves have not been quantitatively analysed to-date. This study uses a common-offset configuration of semblance analysis, both to characterise velocity trends from GPR diffraction hyperbolae and, since the magnitude of a semblance response is proportional to signal-to-noise ratio, to quantify the strength of a forensic GPR response. 2D GPR profiles were acquired over a simulated clandestine burial, with a wrapped-pig cadaver monitored at three-month intervals between 2008 and 2013 with GPR antennas of three different centre-frequencies (110, 225 and 450 MHz). The GPR response to the cadaver was a strong diffraction hyperbola. Results show, in contrast to resistivity surveys, that semblance analysis have little sensitivity to changes attributable to decomposition, and only a subtle influence from seasonality: velocity increases (0.01-0.02 m/ns) were observed in summer, associated with a decrease (5-10%) in peak semblance magnitude, SM, and potentially in the reflectivity of the cadaver. The lowest-frequency antennas consistently gave the highest signal-to-noise ratio although the grave was nonetheless detectable by all frequencies trialled. These observations suggest that forensic GPR surveys could be undertaken with little seasonal hindrance. Whilst GPR analysis cannot currently provide a quantitative diagnostic proxy for time-since-burial, the consistency of responses suggests that graves will remain detectable beyond the five years shown here.

  18. A multivariate analysis of dichotomous opinions in dissensus disaster.

    PubMed

    Rappaport, A; Zincone, L H; Fricke, P H

    1982-09-01

    Despite the absence of evidence supporting either environmental or economic damages resulting from the Argo Merchant oil spill of 1976, a questionnaire administered 11 months afterward to 258 randomly selected heads of households in four towns contiguous to the spill revealed that 60 percent thought damages had occurred. In a secondary analysis of the original data to examine the causes of the damage perceptions, a discriminant function was developed on a randomly selected test group and evaluated on a control group. The results support the hypothesis that incorrect damage perceptions resulted from a priori views on the part of younger, socially conscious, higher-achieving heads of households. Support is indicated for the hypothesis that a priori perceptions were reinforced after the event. The index for total discriminating power was .43 for the test group and .38 for the control group. Television was the major media information source. PMID:7143267

  19. [The analysis of the articles related to toxicological (forensic) chemistry published in the journal "Sudebno-meditsinskaya ekspertiza (Forensic Medical Expertise)" in 2004-2013. Part 1. The structure and quality of the publications].

    PubMed

    Orlova, A M

    2015-01-01

    The elements of the scientometric survey were applied for the analysis of the character, structure, and subject-matter of the articles related to toxicological (forensic) chemistry that had been published in the journal during the period from 2004 to 2013. The data on the number of publications and their authors are presented. The emphasis is laid on the merits and demerits of the papers submitted for publications. PMID:26710516

  20. [Forensic entomology].

    PubMed

    Açikgöz, Halide Nihal

    2010-01-01

    Odour of the animal or human corpses immediately after death is very attractive for insects and other invertebrates. Blue and green bottle flies from the Calliphoridae family are the first colonizers of cadaver and immediately later necrophagous Diptera from the Sarcophagidae family settle on the same corpse. It is essential to determine the time past after death for elucidating the event in case of the homicide or suspicious death, and it is directly proportional to the post mortem interval expected time, which is based upon the speed of the larval growth. In this article, we purposed to stress the special interest of forensic entomology for the scientists who will apply this science in their forensic researches and case studies, and also to provide information to our judges, prosecutors and law enforcement agents in order to consider the entomological samples to be reliable and applicable evidences as biological stains and hairs. We are of the opinion that if any forensic entomologist is called to the crime scene or if the evidences are collected and then delivered to an entomologist, the forensic cases will be elucidated faster and more accurately. PMID:20954127

  1. How useful and reliable are disaster databases in the context of climate and global change? A comparative case study analysis in Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huggel, C.; Raissig, A.; Rohrer, M.; Romero, G.; Diaz, A.; Salzmann, N.

    2015-03-01

    Damage caused by weather- and climate-related disasters have increased over the past decades, and growing exposure and wealth have been identified as main drivers of this increase. Disaster databases are a primary tool for the analysis of disaster characteristics and trends at global or national scales, and they support disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. However, the quality, consistency and completeness of different disaster databases are highly variable. Even though such variation critically influences the outcome of any study, comparative analyses of different databases are still rare to date. Furthermore, there is an unequal geographic distribution of current disaster trend studies, with developing countries being underrepresented. Here, we analyze three different disaster databases in the developing-country context of Peru: a global database (Emergency Events Database: EM-DAT), a multinational Latin American database (DesInventar) and a national database (Peruvian National Information System for the Prevention of Disasters: SINPAD). The analysis is performed across three dimensions: (1) spatial scales, from local to regional (provincial) and national scale; (2) timescales, from single events to decadal trends; and (3) disaster categories and metrics, including the number of single disaster event occurrence, or people killed and affected. Results show limited changes in disaster occurrence in the Cusco and ApurÍmac regions in southern Peru over the past four decades but strong positive trends in people affected at the national scale. We furthermore found large variations of the disaster metrics studied over different spatial and temporal scales, depending on the disaster database analyzed. We conclude and recommend that the type, method and source of documentation should be carefully evaluated for any analysis of disaster databases; reporting criteria should be improved and documentation efforts strengthened.

  2. The state of nuclear forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kristo, Michael J.; Tumey, Scott J.

    2013-01-01

    Nuclear terrorism has been identified as one of the most serious security threats facing the world today. Many countries, including the United States, have incorporated nuclear forensic analysis as a component of their strategy to prevent nuclear terrorism. Nuclear forensics involves the laboratory analysis of seized illicit nuclear materials or debris from a nuclear detonation to identify the origins of the material or weapon. Over the years, a number of forensic signatures have been developed to improve the confidence with which forensic analysts can draw conclusions. These signatures are validated and new signatures are discovered through research and development programs and in round-robin exercises among nuclear forensic laboratories. The recent Nuclear Smuggling International Technical Working Group Third Round Robin Exercise and an on-going program focused on attribution of uranium ore concentrate provide prime examples of the current state of nuclear forensics. These case studies will be examined and the opportunities for accelerator mass spectrometry to play a role in nuclear forensics will be discussed.

  3. Error rates in forensic DNA analysis: definition, numbers, impact and communication.

    PubMed

    Kloosterman, Ate; Sjerps, Marjan; Quak, Astrid

    2014-09-01

    Forensic DNA casework is currently regarded as one of the most important types of forensic evidence, and important decisions in intelligence and justice are based on it. However, errors occasionally occur and may have very serious consequences. In other domains, error rates have been defined and published. The forensic domain is lagging behind concerning this transparency for various reasons. In this paper we provide definitions and observed frequencies for different types of errors at the Human Biological Traces Department of the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) over the years 2008-2012. Furthermore, we assess their actual and potential impact and describe how the NFI deals with the communication of these numbers to the legal justice system. We conclude that the observed relative frequency of quality failures is comparable to studies from clinical laboratories and genetic testing centres. Furthermore, this frequency is constant over the five-year study period. The most common causes of failures related to the laboratory process were contamination and human error. Most human errors could be corrected, whereas gross contamination in crime samples often resulted in irreversible consequences. Hence this type of contamination is identified as the most significant source of error. Of the known contamination incidents, most were detected by the NFI quality control system before the report was issued to the authorities, and thus did not lead to flawed decisions like false convictions. However in a very limited number of cases crucial errors were detected after the report was issued, sometimes with severe consequences. Many of these errors were made in the post-analytical phase. The error rates reported in this paper are useful for quality improvement and benchmarking, and contribute to an open research culture that promotes public trust. However, they are irrelevant in the context of a particular case. Here case-specific probabilities of undetected errors are needed. These should be reported, separately from the match probability, when requested by the court or when there are internal or external indications for error. It should also be made clear that there are various other issues to consider, like DNA transfer. Forensic statistical models, in particular Bayesian networks, may be useful to take the various uncertainties into account and demonstrate their effects on the evidential value of the forensic DNA results. PMID:24905336

  4. [Research Progress on Forensic Entomotoxicology].

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-jiang; Zhai, Xian-dun; Guan, Ling; Mo, Yao-nan

    2015-06-01

    Forensic entomotoxicology is a branch of forensic medicine, which applies entomology, toxicology and other related studies to solve the poisoning cases. It has an obvious advantage in the investigation on poisoning death. Based on the expounding definition and research of entomotoxicology, this paper reviews research progress and application value in some aspects of forensic medicine, such as the effects of drugs/toxins on the growth and development of sarcosaphagous insects and the qualitative and quantitative analysis of the drugs/toxins in the poisoned body tissue. PMID:26442378

  5. The value of radiocarbon analysis in determining the forensic interest of human skeletal remains found in unusual circumstances.

    PubMed

    Cardoso, Hugo F V; Puentes, Katerina; Soares, António Monge; Santos, Agostinho; Magalhães, Teresa

    2012-02-01

    The case under analysis refers to the remains of a young adult female found in a shallow grave during the construction work of a hospital in Northern Portugal. The forensic interest of the finding could not be ruled out since distinguishing features pointing to an archaeological grave were lacking. For example, absence of archaeological artefacts could not establish its forensic significance with certainty, together with the absence of modern objects, such as remnants of clothing or personal objects. In addition, although the remains were badly preserved, the condition may not have resulted from a long post-depositional period, but instead could be explained by the geology of the site and the presence of plant roots. The radiocarbon analysis of the remains was meant to establish the death of the individual to before or after the mid-1950s, from comparison with bomb-curve content values. A value of 0.9789 ± 0.0044 for F(14)C (pmC = 97.19 ± 0.44% Modern or Δ(14)C = -28.1 ± 4.4‰) was obtained, which placed the death of the individual in the pre-mod-1950s period. This report illustrates the use of radiocarbon analysis in establishing whether the human remains are contemporary or not and describes evidence for what appears to be an historic clandestine grave. PMID:22281219

  6. Application of the ORIGEN Fallout Analysis Tool and the DELFIC Fallout Planning Tool to National Technical Nuclear Forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Jodoin, Vincent J; Lee, Ronald W; Peplow, Douglas E.; Lefebvre, Jordan P

    2011-01-01

    The objective of this project was to provide a robust fallout analysis and planning tool for the National Technical Nuclear Forensics interagency ground sample collection team. Their application called for a fast-running, portable mission-planning tool for use in response to emerging improvised nuclear device (IND) post-detonation situations. The project met those goals by research and development of models to predict the physical, chemical, and radiological properties of fallout debris. ORNL has developed new graphical user interfaces for two existing codes, the Oak Ridge Isotope Generation (ORIGEN) code and the Defense Land Fallout Interpretive Code (DELFIC). ORIGEN is a validated, radionuclide production and decay code that has been implemented into the Fallout Analysis Tool to predict the fallout source term nuclide inventory after the detonation of an IND. DELFIC is a validated, physics-based, research reference fallout prediction software package. It has been implemented into the Fallout Planning Tool and is used to predict the fractionated isotope concentrations in fallout, particle sizes, fractionation ratios, dose rate, and integrated dose over the planned collection routes - information vital to ensure quality samples for nuclear forensic analysis while predicting dose to the sample collectors. DELFIC contains a particle activity module, which models the radiochemical fractionation of the elements in a cooling fireball as they condense into and onto particles to predict the fractionated activity size distribution for a given scenario. This provides the most detailed physics-based characterization of the fallout source term phenomenology available in an operational fallout model.

  7. The contribution of DNA to the disaster victim identification (DVI) effort.

    PubMed

    Hartman, D; Drummer, O; Eckhoff, C; Scheffer, J W; Stringer, P

    2011-02-25

    As part of the disaster victim identification (DVI) response to the 2009 Victorian bushfires disaster, a number of scientific disciplines contributed to the human identification process--forensic pathology, anthropology and odontology, as well as fingerprinting and DNA profiling. The DNA laboratory received 182 post-mortem (PM) samples from 120 DVI cases and 236 reference samples corresponding to 163 missing persons (and two non-DVI cases). DNA analysis yielded full DNA profiles for 102 DVI cases and 190 ante-mortem (AM) samples (relating to all 163 missing persons), respectively. Subsequent comparison of DNA profiles, through direct and kinship matching, resulted in the submission of 76 DNA reports to the DVI Reconciliation Centre which assisted in the identification of 67 deceased. This paper describes the contribution of DNA analysis towards the DVI response to the 2009 Victorian bushfires disaster. PMID:21106312

  8. [Analysis of forensic-medical expert conclusions on rap and concealed rape (data from anonymous questionnaires)].

    PubMed

    Pigolkin, Iu I; Dmitrieva, O A

    2001-01-01

    Specific features of modern cases of raping are analyzed on the basis of the data of forensic medical obstetrical and gynecological expert evaluations carried out in the Primorye territory. Age and risk groups are defined, health status of victims is characterized, and specific injuries of the body and genitals are described. Specific features of concealed sexual violations in Vladivostok are defined and the need in creation of rehabilitation centers for victims of raping is discussed. PMID:11871331

  9. A model for forensic dental education in the predoctoral dental school curriculum.

    PubMed

    Hermsen, Kenneth P; Johnson, J Dane

    2012-05-01

    Forensic odontologists play an important role locally and nationally in assisting in the identification of the victims of mass fatality incidents, whether natural or human-made. With the recent passage of legislation by Congress identifying dentists as a first-responder resource, knowledge of their expanding role in disaster response is particularly important. The purpose of this article is to describe the forensic dental course being taught at Creighton University School of Dentistry in Omaha, Nebraska, as a model for providing a fundamental education in forensic dentistry and disaster preparedness at the predoctoral dental level. This model is designed to 1) provide students with a broad view of forensic odontology; 2) give them a functional knowledge of the tools and techniques of the modern forensic dentist; 3) provide basic knowledge of their potential role in disaster preparedness and response; and 4) encourage students to pursue further forensic education, become active in national forensic organizations, and get involved in disaster preparedness/response in their home communities following graduation. This article includes lecture topics, demonstrations, and hands-on exercises being used at Creighton to teach students the fundamentals of forensic odontology and disaster preparedness. PMID:22550101

  10. Effect of electron beam irradiation on forensic evidence. 2. Analysis of writing inks on porous surfaces.

    PubMed

    Ramotowski, Robert S; Regen, Erin M

    2007-05-01

    The effect of electron beam irradiation on a series of different writing inks is described. As the anthrax-tainted letters were discovered in October 2001, the U.S. government began to experiment with the use of the electron beam irradiation process for destroying such biological agents. Plans initially considered a large-scale countrywide use of this technology. However, over time the scope of this plan as well as the radiation dosage were reduced, especially when some adverse consequences to mailed items subjected to this process were observed. Little data existed at the time to characterize what level of damage might be expected to occur with common items sent through the mail. This was especially important to museums and other institutions that routinely ship valuable and historic items through the mail. Although the Smithsonian Institution initiated some studies of the effect of electron beam irradiation on archived materials, little data existed on the effect that this process would have on forensic evidence. Approximately 97 different black, blue, red, green, and yellow writing inks were selected. Writing ink types included ballpoint, gel, plastic/felt tip, and rollerball. All noncontrol samples were subjected to standard mail irradiation conditions used by the U.S. Postal Service at the time this experiment was performed. A video spectral comparator and thin-layer chromatography (TLC) analysis were used to evaluate both the control and the irradiated samples. Some published studies reported changes in the presence/absence of dye bands in the chromatograms of irradiated writing inks. Some of these studies report the formation of additional dye bands on the chromatogram while others report missing dye bands. However, using standard testing guidelines and procedures, none of the 97 irradiated inks tested were found to show any significant optical or chemical differences from the control samples. In addition, random testing of some of the ink samples using a second solvent system did not reveal any changes. However, one control ink did show some minor changes in optical properties and dye characteristics over time (but not TLC) while the irradiated sample remained stable. Significant changes in the ultraviolet fluorescence characteristics of the irradiated paper samples themselves (not inks) were also observed. PMID:17456088

  11. Client-side Skype forensics: an overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meißner, Tina; Kröger, Knut; Creutzburg, Reiner

    2013-03-01

    IT security and computer forensics are important components in the information technology. In the present study, a client-side Skype forensics is performed. It is designed to explain which kind of user data are stored on a computer and which tools allow the extraction of those data for a forensic investigation. There are described both methods - a manual analysis and an analysis with (mainly) open source tools, respectively.

  12. Nuclear forensic analysis of an unknown uranium ore concentrate sample seized in a criminal investigation in Australia

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Keegan, Elizabeth; Kristo, Michael J.; Colella, Michael; Robel, Martin; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; et al

    2014-04-13

    In early 2009, a state policing agency raided a clandestine drug laboratory in a suburb of a major city in Australia. While searching the laboratory, they discovered a small glass jar labelled “Gamma Source” and containing a green powder. The powder was radioactive. This paper documents the detailed nuclear forensic analysis undertaken to characterize and identify the material and determine its provenance. Isotopic and impurity content, phase composition, microstructure and other characteristics were measured on the seized sample, and the results were compared with similar material obtained from the suspected source (ore and ore concentrate material). While an extensive rangemore » of parameters were measured, the key ‘nuclear forensic signatures’ used to identify the material were the U isotopic composition, Pb and Sr isotope ratios, and the rare earth element pattern. These measurements, in combination with statistical analysis of the elemental and isotopic content of the material against a database of uranium ore concentrates sourced from mines located worldwide, led to the conclusion that the seized material (a uranium ore concentrate of natural isotopic abundance) most likely originated from Mary Kathleen, a former Australian uranium mine.« less

  13. Nuclear forensic analysis of an unknown uranium ore concentrate sample seized in a criminal investigation in Australia.

    PubMed

    Keegan, Elizabeth; Kristo, Michael J; Colella, Michael; Robel, Martin; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; Plaue, Jonathan; Wong, Henri; Davis, Joel; Loi, Elaine; Reinhard, Mark; Hutcheon, Ian

    2014-07-01

    Early in 2009, a state policing agency raided a clandestine drug laboratory in a suburb of a major city in Australia. During the search of the laboratory, a small glass jar labelled "Gamma Source" and containing a green powder was discovered. The powder was radioactive. This paper documents the detailed nuclear forensic analysis undertaken to characterise and identify the material and determine its provenance. Isotopic and impurity content, phase composition, microstructure and other characteristics were measured on the seized sample, and the results were compared with similar material obtained from the suspected source (ore and ore concentrate material). While an extensive range of parameters were measured, the key 'nuclear forensic signatures' used to identify the material were the U isotopic composition, Pb and Sr isotope ratios, and the rare earth element pattern. These measurements, in combination with statistical analysis of the elemental and isotopic content of the material against a database of uranium ore concentrates sourced from mines located worldwide, led to the conclusion that the seized material (a uranium ore concentrate of natural isotopic abundance) most likely originated from Mary Kathleen, a former Australian uranium mine. PMID:24836840

  14. Successful adaption of a forensic toxicological screening workflow employing nontargeted liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry to water analysis.

    PubMed

    Steger, Julia; Arnhard, Kathrin; Haslacher, Sandra; Geiger, Klemens; Singer, Klaus; Schlapp, Michael; Pitterl, Florian; Oberacher, Herbert

    2016-04-01

    Forensic toxicology and environmental water analysis share the common interest and responsibility in ensuring comprehensive and reliable confirmation of drugs and pharmaceutical compounds in samples analyzed. Dealing with similar analytes, detection and identification techniques should be exchangeable between scientific disciplines. Herein, we demonstrate the successful adaption of a forensic toxicological screening workflow employing nontargeted LC/MS/MS under data-dependent acquisition control and subsequent database search to water analysis. The main modification involved processing of an increased sample volume with SPE (500 mL vs. 1-10 mL) to reach LODs in the low ng/L range. Tandem mass spectra acquired with a qTOF instrument were submitted to database search. The targeted data mining strategy was found to be sensitive and specific; automated search produced hardly any false results. To demonstrate the applicability of the adapted workflow to complex samples, 14 wastewater effluent samples collected on seven consecutive days at the local wastewater-treatment plant were analyzed. Of the 88,970 fragment ion mass spectra produced, 8.8% of spectra were successfully assigned to one of the 1040 reference compounds included in the database, and this enabled the identification of 51 compounds representing important illegal drugs, members of various pharmaceutical compound classes, and metabolites thereof. PMID:26791338

  15. Nuclear forensic analysis of an unknown uranium ore concentrate sample seized in a criminal investigation in Australia

    SciTech Connect

    Keegan, Elizabeth; Kristo, Michael J.; Colella, Michael; Robel, Martin; Williams, Ross; Lindvall, Rachel; Eppich, Gary; Roberts, Sarah; Borg, Lars; Gaffney, Amy; Plaue, Jonathan; Wong, Henri; Davis, Joel; Loi, Elaine; Reinhard, Mark; Hutcheon, Ian

    2014-04-13

    In early 2009, a state policing agency raided a clandestine drug laboratory in a suburb of a major city in Australia. While searching the laboratory, they discovered a small glass jar labelled “Gamma Source” and containing a green powder. The powder was radioactive. This paper documents the detailed nuclear forensic analysis undertaken to characterize and identify the material and determine its provenance. Isotopic and impurity content, phase composition, microstructure and other characteristics were measured on the seized sample, and the results were compared with similar material obtained from the suspected source (ore and ore concentrate material). While an extensive range of parameters were measured, the key ‘nuclear forensic signatures’ used to identify the material were the U isotopic composition, Pb and Sr isotope ratios, and the rare earth element pattern. These measurements, in combination with statistical analysis of the elemental and isotopic content of the material against a database of uranium ore concentrates sourced from mines located worldwide, led to the conclusion that the seized material (a uranium ore concentrate of natural isotopic abundance) most likely originated from Mary Kathleen, a former Australian uranium mine.

  16. Wavelength dependence on the forensic analysis of glass by nanosecond 266 nm and 1064 nm laser induced breakdown spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Cahoon, Erica M.; Almirall, Jose R.

    2010-05-01

    Laser induced breakdown spectroscopy can be used for the chemical characterization of glass to provide evidence of an association between a fragment found at a crime scene to a source of glass of known origin. Two different laser irradiances, 266 nm and 1064 nm, were used to conduct qualitative and quantitative analysis of glass standards. Single-pulse and double-pulse configurations and lens-to-sample-distance settings were optimized to yield the best laser-glass coupling. Laser energy and acquisition timing delays were also optimized to result in the highest signal-to-noise ratio corresponding to the highest precision and accuracy. The crater morphology was examined and the mass removed was calculated for both the 266 nm and 1064 nm irradiations. The analytical figures of merit suggest that the 266 nm and 1064 nm wavelengths are capable of good performance for the forensic chemical characterization of glass. The results presented here suggest that the 266 nm laser produces a better laser-glass matrix coupling, resulting in a better stoichiometric representation of the glass sample. The 266 nm irradiance is therefore recommended for the forensic analysis and comparison of glass samples.

  17. Virtual tool mark generation for efficient striation analysis in forensic science

    SciTech Connect

    Ekstrand, Laura

    2012-11-16

    In 2009, a National Academy of Sciences report called for investigation into the scienti#12;c basis behind tool mark comparisons (National Academy of Sciences, 2009). Answering this call, Chumbley et al. (2010) attempted to prove or disprove the hypothesis that tool marks are unique to a single tool. They developed a statistical algorithm that could, in most cases, discern matching and non-matching tool marks made at di#11;erent angles by sequentially numbered screwdriver tips. Moreover, in the cases where the algorithm misinterpreted a pair of marks, an experienced forensics examiner could discern the correct outcome. While this research served to con#12;rm the basic assumptions behind tool mark analysis, it also suggested that statistical analysis software could help to reduce the examiner's workload. This led to a new tool mark analysis approach, introduced in this thesis, that relies on 3D scans of screwdriver tip and marked plate surfaces at the micrometer scale from an optical microscope. These scans are carefully cleaned to remove noise from the data acquisition process and assigned a coordinate system that mathematically de#12;nes angles and twists in a natural way. The marking process is then simulated by using a 3D graphics software package to impart rotations to the tip and take the projection of the tip's geometry in the direction of tool travel. The edge of this projection, retrieved from the 3D graphics software, becomes a virtual tool mark. Using this method, virtual marks are made at increments of 5#14; and compared to a scan of the evidence mark. The previously developed statistical package from Chumbley et al. (2010) performs the comparison, comparing the similarity of the geometry of both marks to the similarity that would occur due to random chance. The resulting statistical measure of the likelihood of the match informs the examiner of the angle of the best matching virtual mark, allowing the examiner to focus his/her mark analysis on a smaller range of angles. Preliminary results are quite promising. In a study with both sides of 6 screwdriver tips and 34 corresponding marks, the method distinguished known matches from known non-matches with zero false positive matches and only two matches mistaken for non-matches. For matches, it could predict the correct marking angle within #6;5-10#14;. Moreover, on a standard desktop computer, the virtual marking software is capable of cleaning 3D tip and plate scans in minutes and producing a virtual mark and comparing it to a real mark in seconds. These results support several of the professional conclusions of the tool mark analysis com- munity, including the idea that marks produced by the same tool only match if they are made at similar angles. The method also displays the potential to automate part of the comparison process, freeing the examiner to focus on other tasks, which is important in busy, backlogged crime labs. Finally, the method o#11;ers the unique chance to directly link an evidence mark to the tool that produced it while reducing potential damage to the evidence.

  18. Disaster victim identification.

    PubMed

    Graham, Eleanor A M

    2006-09-01

    In the event of any mass fatality incident, despite the cause, disaster victim identification must be undertaken; the humanitarian and legal responsibility for this falls on the forensic community. Mass fatality incidents can be natural (e.g., tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes), accidental (e.g., building collapse, ship sinking) or can occur as a result of a terrorist attack. Terrorism alone has been responsible for thousands of deaths in recent years and can be encountered in many forms (e.g., suicide bombings, airplane hijackings). In mass fatality situations, the experitise of many specialities are called on to assist in the identification efforts and to allow for the speedy return of recovered human remains to the relatives of the deceased. Today, DNA plays a vital but never solitary role in disaster victim identification. PMID:25868700

  19. Forensic geomorphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruffell, Alastair; McKinley, Jennifer

    2014-02-01

    Geomorphology plays a critical role in two areas of geoforensics: searching the land for surface or buried objects and sampling scenes of crime and control locations as evidence. Associated geoscience disciplines have substantial bodies of work dedicated to their relevance in forensic investigations, yet geomorphology (specifically landforms, their mapping and evolution, soils and relationship to geology and biogeography) have not had similar public exposure. This is strange considering how fundamental to legal enquiries the location of a crime and its evolution are, as this article will demonstrate. This work aims to redress the balance by showing how geomorphology featured in one of the earliest works on forensic science methods, and has continued to play a role in the sociology, archaeology, criminalistics and geoforensics of crime. Traditional landscape interpretation from aerial photography is used to demonstrate how a geomorphological approach saved police time in the search for a clandestine grave. The application geomorphology has in military/humanitarian geography and environmental/engineering forensics is briefly discussed as these are also regularly reviewed in courts of law.

  20. Social network forensics: using commercial software in a university forensics lab environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halkin, Pavel; Kröger, Knut; Creutzburg, Reiner

    2013-05-01

    The aim of this article is to give a practical overview of forensic investigation of social networks cases using certain commercial software packages in a university forensics lab environment. Students have to learn the usefulness of forensic procedures to ensure evidence collection, evidence preservation, forensic analysis, and reporting. It is demonstrated how to investigate important data from social network users. Different scenarios of investigations are presented that are well-suited for forensics lab work in university. In particular, we focus on the new version of Belkasoft Evidence Center and compare it with other well-known tools regarding functionality, usability and capabilities.

  1. Monitoring As A Helpful Means In Forensic Analysis Of Dams Static Instability Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solimene, Pellegrino

    2013-04-01

    Monitoring is a means of controlling the behavior of a structure, which during its operational life is subject to external actions as ordinary loading conditions and disturbing ones; these factors overlap with the random manner defined by the statistical parameter of the return period. The analysis of the monitoring data is crucial to gain a reasoned opinion on the reliability of the structure and its components, and also allows to identify, in the overall operational scenario, the time when preparing interventions aimed at maintaining the optimum levels of functionality and safety. The concept of monitoring in terms of prevention is coupled with the activity of Forensic Engineer who, by Judiciary appointment for the occurrence of an accident, turns its experience -the "Scientific knowledge"- in an "inverse analysis" in which he summed up the results of a survey, which also draws on data sets arising in the course of the constant control of the causes and effects, so to determine the correlations between these factors. His activity aims at giving a contribution to the identification of the typicality of an event, which represents, together with "causal link" between the conduct and events and contra-juridical, the factors judging if there an hypothesis of crime, and therefore liable according to law. In Italy there are about 10,000 dams of varying sizes, but only a small portion of them are considered "large dams" and subjected to a rigorous program of regular inspections and monitoring, in application of specific rules. The rest -"small" dams, conventionally defined as such by the standard, but not for the impact on the area- is affected by a heterogeneous response from the local authorities entrusted with this task: there is therefore a high potential risk scenario, as determined by the presence of not completely controlled structures that insist even on areas heavily populated. Risk can be traced back to acceptable levels if they were implemented with the necessary uniformity of procedures usually adopted for major works, and, therefore, is intended to emphasize the importance to have a more complete cognitive picture of the issues affecting the dams, especially so-called "minor" and their relationship with the embedding territory. This contribution consists of a brief digression on dams, their characteristics, functions performed by them and their relationship with the territory in terms of risk and benefit. After, it is discussed the concept of risk factors that characterize the importance of monitoring extended to the crisis management with a focus to the fast verification of structural reliability after a crisis event. A case study of the vulnerability of a dam under seismic action by "Event tree analysis" is presented, based on data acquired in the course of constant surveillance and control. Some considerations about the monitoring actions related specifically to earthquakes and weather events are presented in order to emphasize its function with regard to risk mitigation through early warning procedures. Finally, the results of a survey on the main accidents involving Italian and USA dams are presented even as a factor pushing to improve the national regulatory framework . Finally, we will discuss some anomalies in the regional rules, leading to interruption in the technical management of the dams by the Public Authority, holding the function of supervision and control over these works and the role of reference for the management of flood mitigation for the hydraulic system. Several hints are provided to contribute towards overcoming the problems that emerged, necessary and urgent to provide answer to the question of security of civil society.

  2. Disaster Recovery: Courting Disaster

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Hanlon, Charlene

    2007-01-01

    An inadequate or nonexistent disaster recovery plan can have dire results. Fire, power outage, and severe weather all can brin down the best of networks in an instant. This article draws on the experiences of the Charlotte County Public Schools (Port Charlotte, Florida), which were able to lessen the damage caused by Hurricane Charley when it hit…

  3. Prioritizing health: a human rights analysis of disaster, vulnerability, and urbanization in New Orleans and Port-au-Prince.

    PubMed

    Carmalt, Jean

    2014-01-01

    Climate change prompts increased urbanization and vulnerability to natural hazards. Urbanization processes are relevant to a right to health analysis of natural hazards because they can exacerbate pre-disaster inequalities that create vulnerability. The 2010 earthquake in Port-au-Prince and the 2005 hurricane in New Orleans provide vivid illustrations of the relationship between spatial inequality and the threats associated with natural hazards. The link between urbanization processes, spatial inequality, and vulnerability to natural hazards is important in terms of an analysis of the right to health; in particular, it provides a basis for arguing that states should prioritize equitable land use and development as a matter of human rights. This article draws on work by geographers, disaster specialists, and international legal scholars to argue that inequitable urbanization processes violate the obligations to respect, protect, and fulfill the human right to health in disaster-prone regions. PMID:25474610

  4. Multimedia Forensics Is Not Computer Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böhme, Rainer; Freiling, Felix C.; Gloe, Thomas; Kirchner, Matthias

    The recent popularity of research on topics of multimedia forensics justifies reflections on the definition of the field. This paper devises an ontology that structures forensic disciplines by their primary domain of evidence. In this sense, both multimedia forensics and computer forensics belong to the class of digital forensics, but they differ notably in the underlying observer model that defines the forensic investigator’s view on (parts of) reality, which itself is not fully cognizable. Important consequences on the reliability of probative facts emerge with regard to available counter-forensic techniques: while perfect concealment of traces is possible for computer forensics, this level of certainty cannot be expected for manipulations of sensor data. We cite concrete examples and refer to established techniques to support our arguments.

  5. Forensic and clinical carbon monoxide (CO) poisonings in Turkey: A detailed analysis.

    PubMed

    Karapirli, Mustafa; Kandemir, Eyup; Akyol, Sumeyya; Kantarci, Muhammed Nabi; Kaya, Mehmet; Akyol, Omer

    2013-02-01

    Carbon monoxide (CO) is produced by incomplete combustion of organic compounds. Its intoxication usually results from inhalation of fumes from improper heating stoves, motor vehicles, or smoke from fires. It can reversibly bind various heme-containing proteins such as hemoglobin, myoglobin, cytochrome p450 and cytochrome oxidases. Among them, it has a high affinity for hemoglobin (230-270 times more avidly than oxygen) with which it forms carboxy-hemoglobin (HbCO) leading to decrease in oxygen-carrying capacity followed by end-organ hypoxia. A tissue hypoxia may then result in transient or permanent damage of important organs like central nervous system and even death. CO poisonings from different reasons are an important cause of morbidity and mortality in Turkey. The purpose of this study on CO poisonings in Turkey is to sum up and analyze the best available researches in both forensic and clinical toxicology fields. This was achieved by synthesizing the results of Turkish and English papers on forensic and clinical CO poisoning cases conducted in universities, institutes, hospitals and other official or private organizations in Turkey. Total of 47,523 medico-legal autopsy data collected from 9 different forensic medicine branches and emergency rooms in different year intervals were reviewed and 980 CO poisoning cases were determined. To calculate the frequency of CO poisoning within all the autopsies carried out and fatal poisoning cases, the number of cases was divided by the total number of medico-legal autopsies and total fatal poisoning cases. The mean age of cases, the source of CO gas, the most common seasons and months, gender, and blood HbCO levels were also taken into consideration if the data is available. Under the light of the findings, we may suggest that determination of affecting factors in CO poisoning is going to be one of the key subjects for planning preventive interventions. PMID:23357394

  6. Specifying digital forensics: A forensics policy approach

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, Carol Louise; Popovsky, Barbara; Frincke, Deborah A.

    2007-09-01

    In this paper we present an approach to digital forensics specification based on forensic policy definition. Our methodology borrows from computer security policy specification, which has accumulated a significant body of research over the past 30 years. We first define the process of specifying forensics properties through a forensics policy and then present an example application of the process. This approach lends itself to formal policy specification and verification, which would allow for more clarity and less ambiguity in the specification process

  7. Forensic analysis of dog (Canis lupus familiaris) mitochondrial DNA sequences: an inter-laboratory study of the GEP-ISFG working group.

    PubMed

    van Asch, Barbara; Albarran, Cristina; Alonso, Antonio; Angulo, Ramón; Alves, Cíntia; Betancor, Eva; Catanesi, Cecilia I; Corach, Daniel; Crespillo, Manuel; Doutremepuich, Christian; Estonba, Andone; Fernandes, Ana Teresa; Fernandez, Eugenia; Garcia, Ana Maria; Garcia, Miguel Angel; Gilardi, Patricia; Gonçalves, Rita; Hernández, Alexis; Lima, Gabriela; Nascimento, Eugênio; de Pancorbo, Marian M; Parra, David; Pinheiro, Maria de Fátima; Prat, Elena; Puente, Jorge; Ramírez, José Luis; Rendo, Fernando; Rey, Isabel; Di Rocco, Florencia; Rodríguez, Anayanci; Sala, Andrea; Salla, Joel; Sanchez, Juan J; Solá, Dácil; Silva, Sandra; Pestano Brito, José Juan; Amorim, António

    2009-12-01

    A voluntary collaborative exercise aiming at the mitochondrial analysis of canine biological samples was carried out in 2006-2008 by the Non-Human Forensic Genetics Commission of the Spanish and Portuguese Working Group (GEP) of the International Society for Forensic Genetics (ISFG). The participating laboratories were asked to sequence two dog samples (one bloodstain and one hair sample) for the mitochondrial D-loop region comprised between positions 15,372 and 16,083 using suggested primers and PCR conditions, and to compare their results against a reference sequence. Twenty-one participating laboratories reported a total of 67.5% concordant results, 15% non-concordant results, and 17.5% no results. The hair sample analysis presented more difficulty to the participants than the bloodstain analysis, with a high percentage (29%) failing to obtain a result. The high level of participation showed the interest of the community in the analysis of dog forensic samples but the results reveal that crucial methodological issues need to be addressed and further training is required in order to respond proficiently to the demands of forensic casework. PMID:19948334

  8. Forensic odontology: A prosthodontic view

    PubMed Central

    Gosavi, Sulekha; Gosavi, Siddharth

    2012-01-01

    The most common role of the forensic dentist is the identification of deceased individuals. Dental identifications have always played a key role in natural and manmade disaster situations, and in particular, the mass casualties normally associated with aviation disasters. Because of the lack of a comprehensive fingerprint database, dental identification continues to be crucial in the world. An all-acrylic resin appliance such as a full denture or an all-acrylic partial denture (or orthodontic appliance), prior to delivery, could be inscribed with the patient's full name on a substrate (paper, metal) and sealed inconspicuously into the surface of a denture by various processes. It has been noted by several authors that in many cases of air disaster where the limbs are completely burnt off, some denture materials survive, especially the posterior part of acrylic dentures and metal-based dentures. Thus, marked dental prostheses (full and partial dentures, mouthguards and removal orthodontic appliances) would lead to rapid identification in the event of accidents and disaster. PMID:23087581

  9. Molecular identification and phylogenetic analysis of the forensically important family Piophilidae (Diptera) from different European locations.

    PubMed

    Zajac, Barbara Karolina; Martin-Vega, Daniel; Feddern, Nina; Fremdt, Heike; e Castro, Catharina Prado; Szpila, Krzysztof; Reckel, Frank; Schütt, Svenja; Verhoff, Marcel A; Amendt, Jens; Zehner, Richard

    2016-02-01

    Species identification plays an important role in forensic entomology and is mandatory for an accurate calculation of the minimum post-mortem interval. Many important Diptera and Coleoptera taxa of the cadaver community can already be identified by common barcoding approaches, i.e., by sequencing a 658bp region in the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (coI) gene. Nevertheless, there is still a lack of reference barcodes for species, in particular, that can be found on cadavers at later decomposition stages. Flies of the family Piophilidae illustrate this gap of knowledge perfectly. Due to the fact that a reliable morphological identification key for the immature stages of this flies is still missing and the immature stages of many piophilids cannot be assigned to a certain species, there is need for additional tools to identify forensically relevant taxa. We collected adult piophilid specimens at 10 locations in five European countries: Spain (n=3 locations), Germany (n=3), Portugal (n=2), Poland (n=1) and Switzerland (n=1). Apart from the coI barcoding region, we additionally analyzed a 398bp long region of the nuclear elongation factor 1 alpha (ef1a) and subsequently established the molecular identifier for nine piophilid species. In addition, we present the molecular phylogeny of the examined taxa. PMID:26760908

  10. [Organization, availability and possibility of analysis of disaster data of climate related origin and its impacts on health].

    PubMed

    Xavier, Diego Ricardo; Barcellos, Christovam; Barros, Heglaucio da Silva; Magalhães, Monica de Avelar Figueiredo Mafra; Matos, Vanderlei Pascoal de; Pedroso, Marcel de Moraes

    2014-09-01

    The occurrence of disasters is often related to unforeseeable able natural processes. However, the analysis of major databases may highlight seasonal and long-term trends, as well as some spatial patterns where risks are concentrated. In this paper the process of acquiring and organizing climate-related disaster data collected by civil protection institutions and made available by the Brazilian Climate and Health Observatory is described. Preliminary analyses show the concentration of disasters caused by heavy rainfall events along the Brazilian coastline especially during the summer. Droughts have longer duration and extent, affecting large areas of the south and northeast regions of the country. These data can be used to analyze and monitor the impact of extreme climatic events on health, as well as identify the vulnerability and climate deteminants. PMID:25184573

  11. Identification of victims of catastrophes: introduction to the role of forensic odontology.

    PubMed

    Ndiokwelu, E; Miquel, J L; Coudert, N

    2003-12-01

    There are many ways of identifying victims of catastrophes but in disasters where most soft tissue has been lost, the hard tissues of teeth can be used. This article describes the important role that forensic odontology can play in these cases. This role has not been recognised in most countries, particularly developing countries, where forensic odontology has been restricted to legal affairs. PMID:15074076

  12. Forensic hash for multimedia information

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Wenjun; Varna, Avinash L.; Wu, Min

    2010-01-01

    Digital multimedia such as images and videos are prevalent on today's internet and cause significant social impact, which can be evidenced by the proliferation of social networking sites with user generated contents. Due to the ease of generating and modifying images and videos, it is critical to establish trustworthiness for online multimedia information. In this paper, we propose novel approaches to perform multimedia forensics using compact side information to reconstruct the processing history of a document. We refer to this as FASHION, standing for Forensic hASH for informatION assurance. Based on the Radon transform and scale space theory, the proposed forensic hash is compact and can effectively estimate the parameters of geometric transforms and detect local tampering that an image may have undergone. Forensic hash is designed to answer a broader range of questions regarding the processing history of multimedia data than the simple binary decision from traditional robust image hashing, and also offers more efficient and accurate forensic analysis than multimedia forensic techniques that do not use any side information.

  13. Dentistry and Mass Disaster – A Review

    PubMed Central

    Sakthi, D Sri

    2014-01-01

    Mass disaster situations may arise from natural or manmade circumstances like bioterrorism and dentists or dental responders have significant roles in human identification, following such occurrences. The various roles of dentists in mass disaster management, that include bio surveillance and notification, diagnosis and monitoring, triage, referrals of patients, immunizations, decontamination and infection control would be considered. The varying extents of use of forensic dental techniques and the resulting positive impacts made on human identification will also be included. The importance of preparation by way of special training for the dental personnel, mass disaster rehearsal, and use of modern day technology will be stressed on. PMID:25177658

  14. World of Forensic Laboratory Testing

    MedlinePlus

    ... Visit Global Sites Search Help? The World of Forensic Laboratory Testing Share this page: Was this page helpful? Overview | Forensic Pathology | Forensic Toxicology | Genetic Tests and DNA Typing | ...

  15. A qualitative analysis of posttraumatic stress among Mexican victims of disaster.

    PubMed

    Norris, F H; Weisshaar, D L; Conrad, M L; Diaz, E M; Murphy, A D; Lbañez, G E

    2001-10-01

    In unstructured interviews, 24 Mexicans described survivors' responses to disasters in Guadalajara, Jalisco (n = 9), Homestead, Florida (n = 6), and Puerto Angel, Oaxaca (n = 9). This analysis assessed the extent to which symptom descriptions corresponded to the 17 criterion symptoms of PTSD. Nineteen participants (79%) mentioned from 1 to 9 criterion symptoms. Event-related distress, hypervigilance, recurrent recollections, and avoiding reminders were described most often. Only 3 criterion symptoms were never described. Twenty participants (83%) provided 109 separate expressions that could not be classified specifically as criterion symptoms. These phrases were sorted by 9 independent Mexican volunteers and cluster analyzed. Clusters composed of ataques de nervios, depression, lasting trauma, and somatic complaints provided the best description of the data. PMID:11776421

  16. [Measurement and analysis of reflected information from crops canopy suffering from wind disaster influence].

    PubMed

    Bao, Yu-Long; Zhang, Ji-Quan; Liu, Xiao-Jing; Wang, Yong-Fang; Ma, Dong-Lai; Sun, Zhong-Qiu

    2013-04-01

    The corn in the grain filling stage fell over in the central region of Jilin province by the Typhoon Bolaven influence. In order to determine the impact of falling over corn canopy on the reflected information, the hyperspectral reflectance was detected at different viewing zenith angles, at the same time, the polarized reflection was also measured. The results from the analysis by combining the reflection and polarization from corn canopy showed that the reflection of falling over corn is low in visible, while increases in the near infrared wavelength. The reflection from falling over corn canopy was more anisotropic than stand-up corn canopy. The reflected light was highly polarized, the polarization of corn canopy provided the probability for distinguishing between falling over corn and stand-up corn. This research provides a basis for estimating the disaster area and lost units. PMID:23841428

  17. Forensic entomology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amendt, Jens; Krettek, Roman; Zehner, Richard

    Necrophagous insects are important in the decomposition of cadavers. The close association between insects and corpses and the use of insects in medicocriminal investigations is the subject of forensic entomology. The present paper reviews the historical background of this discipline, important postmortem processes, and discusses the scientific basis underlying attempts to determine the time interval since death. Using medical techniques, such as the measurement of body temperature or analysing livor and rigor mortis, time since death can only be accurately measured for the first two or three days after death. In contrast, by calculating the age of immature insect stages feeding on a corpse and analysing the necrophagous species present, postmortem intervals from the first day to several weeks can be estimated. These entomological methods may be hampered by difficulties associated with species identification, but modern DNA techniques are contributing to the rapid and authoritative identification of necrophagous insects. Other uses of entomological data include the toxicological examination of necrophagous larvae from a corpse to identify and estimate drugs and toxicants ingested by the person when alive and the proof of possible postmortem manipulations. Forensic entomology may even help in investigations dealing with people who are alive but in need of care, by revealing information about cases of neglect.

  18. Forensic Data Carving

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Povar, Digambar; Bhadran, V. K.

    File or data carving is a term used in the field of Cyber forensics. Cyber forensics is the process of acquisition, authentication, analysis and documentation of evidence extracted from and/or contained in a computer system, computer network and digital media. Extracting data (file) out of undifferentiated blocks (raw data) is called as carving. Identifying and recovering files based on analysis of file formats is known as file carving. In Cyber Forensics, carving is a helpful technique in finding hidden or deleted files from digital media. A file can be hidden in areas like lost clusters, unallocated clusters and slack space of the disk or digital media. To use this method of extraction, a file should have a standard file signature called a file header (start of the file). A search is performed to locate the file header and continued until the file footer (end of the file) is reached. The data between these two points will be extracted and analyzed to validate the file. The extraction algorithm uses different methods of carving depending on the file formats.

  19. Collection and recording of radiological information for forensic purposes.

    PubMed

    Forrest, Alexander S

    2012-03-01

    Forensic odontology is the application of dental expertise to legal issues. Commonly, it involves the comparison of dental records of a missing person with a deceased individual for the purposes of forensic personal identification, either in a single case, or as part of the response to an event involving multiple simultaneous fatalities (Disaster Victim Identification, or DVI). It may also involve studies to determine the age of an individual, which may be required as part of a forensic identification process, or for another legal purpose such as the determination of legal responsibility, or in connection with immigration. This report examines the types of radiological information currently used in such forensic studies, and discusses how this information may be accessed or recorded, as well as the techniques that are commonly applied to the radiological data to reach a satisfactory outcome for application in forensic casework. PMID:22376094

  20. Forensic analysis of 10 barbiturates in human biological samples using a new reversed-phase chromatographic column packed with 2-micrometre porous microspherical silica-gel.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, E; Terada, M; Tanno, K; Misawa, S; Wakasugi, C

    1997-02-01

    A high-performance liquid chromatographic method has been developed for the forensic analysis of 10 frequently used barbiturates (BARs) (allobarbital, amobarbital, barbital, cyclobarbital, hexobarbital, metharbital, pentobarbital, phenobarbital, secobarbital and thiopental) using a recently developed reversed-phase column packed with 2-micron particles. The results show that the new ODS column packing gives higher sensitivity and a shorter analysis time than the conventional ODS column packing when applied to the analysis of biological samples. PMID:9050222

  1. Atomic force microscopic investigation of commercial pressure sensitive adhesives for forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Canetta, Elisabetta; Adya, Ashok K

    2011-07-15

    Pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA), such as those used in packaging and adhesive tapes, are very often encountered in forensic investigations. In criminal activities, packaging tapes may be used for sealing packets containing drugs, explosive devices, or questioned documents, while adhesive and electrical tapes are used occasionally in kidnapping cases. In this work, the potential of using atomic force microscopy (AFM) in both imaging and force mapping (FM) modes to derive additional analytical information from PSAs is demonstrated. AFM has been used to illustrate differences in the ultrastructural and nanomechanical properties of three visually distinguishable commercial PSAs to first test the feasibility of using this technique. Subsequently, AFM was used to detect nanoscopic differences between three visually indistinguishable PSAs. PMID:21342752

  2. Biomedical and Forensic Applications of Combined Catalytic Hydrogenation-Stable Isotope Ratio Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Sephton, Mark A.; Meredith, Will; Sun, Cheng-Gong; Snape, Colin E.

    2007-01-01

    Studies of biological molecules such as fatty acids and the steroid hormones have the potential to benefit enormously from stable carbon isotope ratio measurements of individual molecules. In their natural form, however, the body’s molecules interact too readily with laboratory equipment designed to separate them for accurate measurements to be made. Some methods overcome this problem by adding carbon to the target molecule, but this can irreversibly overprint the carbon source ‘signal’. Hydropyrolysis is a newly-applied catalytic technique that delicately strips molecules of their functional groups but retains their carbon skeletons and stereochemistries intact, allowing precise determination of the carbon source. By solving analytical problems, the new technique is increasing the ability of scientists to pinpoint molecular indicators of disease, elucidate metabolic pathways and recognise administered substances in forensic investigations. PMID:19662175

  3. Biomedical and forensic applications of combined catalytic hydrogenation-stable isotope ratio analysis.

    PubMed

    Sephton, Mark A; Meredith, Will; Sun, Cheng-Gong; Snape, Colin E

    2007-01-01

    Studies of biological molecules such as fatty acids and the steroid hormones have the potential to benefit enormously from stable carbon isotope ratio measurements of individual molecules. In their natural form, however, the body's molecules interact too readily with laboratory equipment designed to separate them for accurate measurements to be made. Some methods overcome this problem by adding carbon to the target molecule, but this can irreversibly overprint the carbon source 'signal'. Hydropyrolysis is a newly-applied catalytic technique that delicately strips molecules of their functional groups but retains their carbon skeletons and stereochemistries intact, allowing precise determination of the carbon source. By solving analytical problems, the new technique is increasing the ability of scientists to pinpoint molecular indicators of disease, elucidate metabolic pathways and recognise administered substances in forensic investigations. PMID:19662175

  4. Detection Strategies for Malingering with the Miller Forensic Assessment of Symptoms Test: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis of Its Underlying Dimensions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vitacco, Michael J.; Jackson, Rebecca L.; Rogers, Richard; Neumann, Craig S.; Miller, Holly A.; Gabel, Jason

    2008-01-01

    Two of the most widely used measures for the assessment of malingering in forensic populations are the Miller Forensic Assessment of Symptoms Test (M-FAST) and the Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms (SIRS). The underlying dimensions of the SIRS have been well established in the literature, but the structure of the M-FAST remains relatively

  5. Detection Strategies for Malingering with the Miller Forensic Assessment of Symptoms Test: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis of Its Underlying Dimensions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vitacco, Michael J.; Jackson, Rebecca L.; Rogers, Richard; Neumann, Craig S.; Miller, Holly A.; Gabel, Jason

    2008-01-01

    Two of the most widely used measures for the assessment of malingering in forensic populations are the Miller Forensic Assessment of Symptoms Test (M-FAST) and the Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms (SIRS). The underlying dimensions of the SIRS have been well established in the literature, but the structure of the M-FAST remains relatively…

  6. Objective forensic analysis of striated, quasi-striated and impressed toolmarks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spotts, Ryan E.

    Following the 1993 Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc. court case and continuing to the 2010 National Academy of Sciences report, comparative forensic toolmark examination has received many challenges to its admissibility in court cases and its scientific foundations. Many of these challenges deal with the subjective nature in determining whether toolmarks are identifiable. This questioning of current identification methods has created a demand for objective methods of identification - "objective" implying known error rates and statistically reliability. The demand for objective methods has resulted in research that created a statistical algorithm capable of comparing toolmarks to determine their statistical similarity, and thus the ability to separate matching and nonmatching toolmarks. This was expanded to the creation of virtual toolmarking (characterization of a tool to predict the toolmark it will create). The statistical algorithm, originally designed for two-dimensional striated toolmarks, had been successfully applied to striated screwdriver and quasi-striated plier toolmarks. Following this success, a blind study was conducted to validate the virtual toolmarking capability using striated screwdriver marks created at various angles of incidence. Work was also performed to optimize the statistical algorithm by implementing means to ensure the algorithm operations were constrained to logical comparison regions (e.g. the opposite ends of two toolmarks do not need to be compared because they do not coincide with each other). This work was performed on quasi-striated shear cut marks made with pliers - a previously tested, more difficult application of the statistical algorithm that could demonstrate the difference in results due to optimization. The final research conducted was performed with pseudostriated impression toolmarks made with chisels. Impression marks, which are more complex than striated marks, were analyzed using the algorithm to separate matching and nonmatching toolmarks. Results of the conducted research are presented as well as evidence of the primary assumption of forensic toolmark examination; all tools can create identifiably unique toolmarks.

  7. a Preliminary Study of Web-Based Spatial Data Analysis Feasibility - One of Possible Solutions for Disaster Response and Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, C. C.; Chang, K.-C.

    2012-07-01

    As the massive tsunami that struck northeast Japan in 11 March 2011 after a magnitude 9.0 earthquake, it reveals that people are living in a critical environment. Although great improvement has been achieved in disaster prevention technologies, many natural disasters are still unpredictable. In addition to the prevention, rapid and effective responses to such disasters are also crucial. One of the key elements to success is the information dissemination of disaster, including both area and people living within that region. In the past decade, web-based spatial information system has become the major platform for both data sharing and displaying. What is coming next is the development of web-based spatial data analysis. A web-based service allows people to implement spatial analysis immediately as long as the internet connection among database and application servers is available. This useful and helpful spatial information is able to be accessed by all users around the world almost simultaneously. The main goal of this paper is to implement a spatial data analysis module based on service oriented architecture (SOA) concept. The main interest and focus of our study is based on the knowledge regularization processes of spatial data analysis to achieve the automated land cover change detection (LCCD) over internet. The proposed automated model is tested and verified by FORMOSAT-2 imageries taken in 2005 and in 2008. It will be published online for users around the world to maximize the add-on value and minimize the cost of the spatial data, moreover, to reveal the situations of disaster rapidly.

  8. Disaster Preparedness

    PubMed Central

    Achora, Susan; Kamanyire, Joy K.

    2016-01-01

    With the increasing global frequency of disasters, the call for disaster preparedness training needs to be reinforced. Nurses form the largest group of the healthcare workforce and are often on the frontline in disaster management. Therefore, nurses should be adequately equipped with the knowledge and skills to respond to disasters, starting from their pre-service training to their in-service professional training. However, the inclusion of disaster preparedness education in undergraduate nursing curricula is minimal in most countries. The purpose of this article is to highlight the current state of nursing education and training in disaster management, both generally and in Oman. The significance of disaster preparedness training and recommendations for its inclusion in nursing practice and education are also discussed. PMID:26909207

  9. Factors Predicting Organizational Identification with Intercollegiate Forensics Teams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Croucher, Stephen M.; Long, Bridget L.; Meredith, Michael J.; Oommen, Deepa; Steele, Emily L.

    2009-01-01

    This study examines the relationship between intercollegiate forensics competitors' organizational identification and organizational culture. Through a survey analysis of 314 intercollegiate forensics students, this study reports three major findings. First, this study found male competitors identify with forensics programs more than female

  10. Factors Predicting Organizational Identification with Intercollegiate Forensics Teams

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Croucher, Stephen M.; Long, Bridget L.; Meredith, Michael J.; Oommen, Deepa; Steele, Emily L.

    2009-01-01

    This study examines the relationship between intercollegiate forensics competitors' organizational identification and organizational culture. Through a survey analysis of 314 intercollegiate forensics students, this study reports three major findings. First, this study found male competitors identify with forensics programs more than female…

  11. Modeling senescence changes of the pubic symphysis in historic Italian populations: a comparison of the Rostock and forensic approaches to aging using transition analysis.

    PubMed

    Godde, Kanya; Hens, Samantha M

    2015-03-01

    Age-related anatomical changes to the surface of the pubic symphysis are well-documented in the literature. However, aligning these morphological changes with chronological age has proven problematic, often resulting in biased age estimates. Statistical modeling provides an avenue for forensic anthropologists and bioarchaeologists to increase the accuracy of traditional aging methods. Locating appropriate samples to use as a basis for modeling age estimations can be challenging due to differing sample age distributions and potentially varying patterns of senescence. We compared two approaches, Rostock and Forensic, coupled with a Bayesian methodology, to address these issues. Transition analysis was run specific to each method (which differ by sample selection). A Gompertz model was derived from an informative prior that yielded the mortality and senescence parameters for constructing highest posterior density ranges, i.e., coverages, which are analogous to age ranges. These age ranges were generated from both approaches and are presented as reference tables useful for historic male and female Italian samples. The age ranges produced from each approach were tested on an historic Italian sample, using cumulative binomial tests. These two approaches performed similarly, with the Forensic approach showing a slight advantage. However, the Forensic approach is unable to identify varying senescence patterns between populations, thus preference for one approach over the other will depend on research design. Finally, we demonstrate that while populations exhibit similar morphological changes with advancing age, there are no significant sex differences in these samples, and the timing of these changes varies from population to population. PMID:25407762

  12. Forensic toxicology.

    PubMed

    Drummer, Olaf H

    2010-01-01

    Forensic toxicology has developed as a forensic science in recent years and is now widely used to assist in death investigations, in civil and criminal matters involving drug use, in drugs of abuse testing in correctional settings and custodial medicine, in road and workplace safety, in matters involving environmental pollution, as well as in sports doping. Drugs most commonly targeted include amphetamines, benzodiazepines, cannabis, cocaine and the opiates, but can be any other illicit substance or almost any over-the-counter or prescribed drug, as well as poisons available to the community. The discipline requires high level skills in analytical techniques with a solid knowledge of pharmacology and pharmacokinetics. Modern techniques rely heavily on immunoassay screening analyses and mass spectrometry (MS) for confirmatory analyses using either high-performance liquid chromatography or gas chromatography as the separation technique. Tandem MS has become more and more popular compared to single-stage MS. It is essential that analytical systems are fully validated and fit for the purpose and the assay batches are monitored with quality controls. External proficiency programs monitor both the assay and the personnel performing the work. For a laboratory to perform optimally, it is vital that the circumstances and context of the case are known and the laboratory understands the limitations of the analytical systems used, including drug stability. Drugs and poisons can change concentration postmortem due to poor or unequal quality of blood and other specimens, anaerobic metabolism and redistribution. The latter provides the largest handicap in the interpretation of postmortem results. PMID:20358697

  13. Spatial and Temporal Analysis of Human Movements and Applications for Disaster Response Management Utilizing Cell Phone Usage Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasumiishi, M.; Renschler, C. S.; Bittner, T. E.

    2015-07-01

    As cell phone usage becomes a norm in our daily lives, analysis and application of the data has become part of various research fields. This study focuses on the application of cell phone usage data to disaster response management. Cell phones work as a communication link between emergency responders and victims during and after a major disaster. This study recognizes that there are two kinds of disasters, one with an advance warning, and one without an advance warning. Different movement distance between a day with a blizzard (advanced warning) and a normal weather day was identified. In the scenario of a day with an extreme event without advanced warning (earthquake), factors that alter the phone users' movements were analyzed. Lastly, combining both cases, a conceptual model of human movement factors is proposed. Human movements consist of four factors that are push factors, movement-altering factors, derived attributes and constraint factors. Considering each category of factors in case of emergency, it should be necessary that we prepare different kinds of emergency response plans depending on the characteristics of a disaster.

  14. [Natural disasters and health: an analysis of the situation in Brazil].

    PubMed

    Freitas, Carlos Machado de; Silva, Diego Ricardo Xavier; Sena, Aderita Ricarda Martins de; Silva, Eliane Lima; Sales, Luiz Belino Ferreira; Carvalho, Mauren Lopes de; Mazoto, Maíra Lopes; Barcellos, Christovam; Costa, André Monteiro; Oliveira, Mara Lúcia Carneiro; Corvalán, Carlos

    2014-09-01

    Natural disasters are still insufficiently studied and understood within the scope of public health in this country, with impacts in the short and long term. The scope of this article is to analyze the relationship between disasters and their impact on health based on disaster data recorded in the country. The methodology involved the systematization of data and information contained in the Brazilian Atlas of Natural Disasters 1991-2010 and directly from the National Department of Civil Defense (NSCD). Disasters were organized into four categories of events (meteorological; hydrological; climatological; geophysical/geological) and for each of the latter, the data for morbidity, mortality and exposure of those affected were examined, revealing different types of impacts. Three categories of disasters stood out: the hydrological events showed higher percentages of mortality, morbidity and exposure; climatological events had higher percentages of incidents and people affected; the geophysical/geological events had a higher average of exposure and deaths per event. Lastly, a more active participation of the health sector in the post-2015 global political agenda is proposed, particularly events related to sustainable development, climate change and disaster risk reduction. PMID:25184572

  15. Maintaining dental records: Are we ready for forensic needs?

    PubMed Central

    Astekar, Madhusudan; Saawarn, Swati; Ramesh, Gayathri; Saawarn, Nisheeth

    2011-01-01

    Context: Dental remains are usually the last to get destroyed among body parts after death. They may be useful for personal identification in cases of mass disasters and decomposed unidentified bodies. Dental records may help in the identification of suspects in criminal investigations and in medicolegal cases. Maintenance of dental records is legally mandatory in most of the European and American countries. Unfortunately, the law is not very clear in India, and the awareness is very poor. Aims: To assess the awareness regarding the dental record maintenance among dentists in Rajasthan, to deduce the quality of average dental records kept by them and to evaluate the potential use of their maintained records, in any of forensic or medicolegal cases. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 100 dental practitioners of different cities in Rajasthan, India. Materials and Methods: Data were collected through a structured questionnaire, which was responded by the study population in the course of a telephonic interview. The questionnaire addressed on the mode of maintaining dental records in their regular practice. Statistical Analysis Used: The data so gathered were subjected for descriptive analysis. Results: As for knowledge or awareness about maintaining dental records, surprisingly a very low percentile (about 38%) of surveyed dentists maintained records. Sixty-two percent of the dentists were maintaining no records at all. Conclusion: Nonmaintenance or poor quality of records maintained indicates that the dentists in Rajasthan are not prepared for any kind of forensic and medicolegal need if it arises. PMID:22408320

  16. From sample to PCR product in under 45 minutes: a polymeric integrated microdevice for clinical and forensic DNA analysis.

    PubMed

    Lounsbury, Jenny A; Karlsson, Anne; Miranian, Daniel C; Cronk, Stephen M; Nelson, Daniel A; Li, Jingyi; Haverstick, Doris M; Kinnon, Paul; Saul, David J; Landers, James P

    2013-04-01

    The extraction and amplification of DNA from biological samples is laborious and time-consuming, requiring numerous instruments and sample handling steps. An integrated, single-use, poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) microdevice for DNA extraction and amplification would benefit clinical and forensic communities, providing a completely closed system with rapid sample-in-PCR-product-out capability. Here, we show the design and simple flow control required for enzyme-based DNA preparation and PCR from buccal swabs or liquid whole blood samples with an ~5-fold reduction in time. A swab containing cells or DNA could be loaded into a novel receptacle together with the DNA liberation reagents, heated using an infrared heating system, mixed with PCR reagents for one of three different target sets under syringe-driven flow, and thermally-cycled in less than 45 min, an ~6-fold reduction in analysis time as compared to conventional methods. The 4 : 1 PCR reagents : DNA ratio required to provide the correct final concentration of all PCR components for effective amplification was verified using image analysis of colored dyes in the PCR chamber. Novel single-actuation, 'normally-open' adhesive valves were shown to effectively seal the PCR chamber during thermal cycling, preventing air bubble expansion. The effectiveness of the device was demonstrated using three target sets: the sex-typing gene Amelogenin, co-amplification of the β-globin and gelsolin genes, and the amplification of 15 short tandem repeat (STR) loci plus Amelogenin. The use of the integrated microdevice was expanded to the analysis of liquid blood samples which, when incubated with the DNA liberation reagents, form a brown precipitate that inhibits PCR. A simple centrifugation of the integrated microchips (on a custom centrifuge), mobilized the precipitate away from the microchannel entrance, improving amplification of the β-globin and gelsolin gene fragments by ~6-fold. This plastic integrated microdevice represents a microfluidic platform with potential for evolution into point-of-care prototypes for application to both clinical and forensic analyses, providing a 5-fold reduction from conventional analysis time. PMID:23389252

  17. Comparative analysis of hospital and forensic laboratory ethanol concentrations: A 15 month investigation of antemortem specimens.

    PubMed

    Saitman, Alec; Estrada, Julio; Fitzgerald, Robert L; McIntyre, Iain M

    2015-07-01

    Quantitative serum alcohol concentrations from regional hospitals (from specimens collected at time of hospital admission) were compared to results from whole blood (from specimens collected at the time of hospital admission) concentrations measured at the San Diego County Medical Examiner's Office (SDCMEO). Over a 15 month period (January 2012 to March 2013), the postmortem forensic toxicology laboratory analyzed a total of 2,321 cases. Of these, 280 were hospital cases (antemortem) representing 12% of the overall Medical Examiner toxicology casework. 59 of the 280 hospital cases (or 21%) screened positive for alcohol (ethanol). 39 of these 59 cases were included in the study based on available specimens for quantitative analyses. This investigation indicated that serum hospital ethanol concentrations correlated well (R(2) = 0.942) with ethanol values determined at SDCMEO (generally measured in whole blood). There was an observed negative bias with an average of -14.1%. A paired t-test was applied to the data and it was shown that this observed bias is statistically significant. These differences in ethanol concentrations could result from differences in specimen, analytical techniques, and/or calibration. The potential for specimen contamination is also discussed. PMID:26048492

  18. Feline mitochondrial DNA sampling for forensic analysis: When enough is enough!

    PubMed Central

    Grahn, Robert A.; Alhaddad, Hasan; Alves, Paulo C.; Randi, Ettore; Waly, Nashwa E.; Lyons, Leslie A.

    2015-01-01

    Pet hair has a demonstrated value in resolving legal issues. Cat hair is chronically shed and it is difficult to leave a home with cats without some level of secondary transfer. The power of cat hair as an evidentiary resource may be underused because representative genetic databases are not available for exclusionary purposes. Mitochondrial control region databases are highly valuable for hair analyses and have been developed for the cat. In a representative worldwide data set, 83% of domestic cat mitotypes belong to one of twelve major types. Of the remaining 17%, 7.5% are unique within the published 1394 sample database. The current research evaluates the sample size necessary to establish a representative population for forensic comparison of the mitochondrial control region for the domestic cat. For most worldwide populations, randomly sampling 50 unrelated local individuals will achieve saturation at 95%. The 99% saturation is achieved by randomly sampling 60–170 cats, depending on the numbers of mitotypes available in the population at large. Likely due to the recent domestication of the cat and minimal localized population substructure, fewer cats are needed to meet mitochondria DNA control region database practical saturation than for humans or dogs. Coupled with the available worldwide feline control region database of nearly 1400 cats, minimal local sampling will be required to establish an appropriate comparative representative database and achieve significant exclusionary power. PMID:25531059

  19. Feline mitochondrial DNA sampling for forensic analysis: when enough is enough!

    PubMed

    Grahn, Robert A; Alhaddad, Hasan; Alves, Paulo C; Randi, Ettore; Waly, Nashwa E; Lyons, Leslie A

    2015-05-01

    Pet hair has a demonstrated value in resolving legal issues. Cat hair is chronically shed and it is difficult to leave a home with cats without some level of secondary transfer. The power of cat hair as an evidentiary resource may be underused because representative genetic databases are not available for exclusionary purposes. Mitochondrial control region databases are highly valuable for hair analyses and have been developed for the cat. In a representative worldwide data set, 83% of domestic cat mitotypes belong to one of twelve major types. Of the remaining 17%, 7.5% are unique within the published 1394 sample database. The current research evaluates the sample size necessary to establish a representative population for forensic comparison of the mitochondrial control region for the domestic cat. For most worldwide populations, randomly sampling 50 unrelated local individuals will achieve saturation at 95%. The 99% saturation is achieved by randomly sampling 60-170 cats, depending on the numbers of mitotypes available in the population at large. Likely due to the recent domestication of the cat and minimal localized population substructure, fewer cats are needed to meet mitochondria DNA control region database practical saturation than for humans or dogs. Coupled with the available worldwide feline control region database of nearly 1400 cats, minimal local sampling will be required to establish an appropriate comparative representative database and achieve significant exclusionary power. PMID:25531059

  20. Screening sensitivity analysis of a radionuclides atmospheric dispersion model applied to the Fukushima disaster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girard, Sylvain; Korsakissok, Irène; Mallet, Vivien

    2014-10-01

    Numerical models used to forecast the atmospheric dispersion of radionuclides following nuclear accidents are subject to substantial uncertainties. Input data, such as meteorological forecasts or source term estimations, as well as poorly known model parameters contribute for a large part to this uncertainty. A sensitivity analysis with the method of Morris was carried out in the case of the Fukushima disaster as a first step towards the uncertainty analysis of the Polyphemus/Polair3D model. The main difficulties stemmed from the high dimension of the model's input and output. Simple perturbations whose magnitudes were devised from a thorough literature review were applied to 19 uncertain inputs. Several outputs related to atmospheric activity and ground deposition were aggregated, revealing different inputs rankings. Other inputs based on gamma dose rates measurements were used to question the possibility of calibrating the inputs uncertainties. Some inputs, such as the cloud layer thickness, were found to have little influence on most considered outputs and could therefore be safely discarded from further studies. On the contrary, wind perturbations and emission factors for iodine and caesium are predominant. The performance indicators derived from dose rates observations displayed strong sensitivities. This emphasises the share of the overall uncertainty due to input uncertainties and asserts the relevance of the simple perturbation scheme that was employed in this work.

  1. History, research and practice of forensic anthropology in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Traithepchanapai, Pongpon; Mahakkanukrauh, Pasuk; Kranioti, Elena F

    2016-04-01

    Forensic anthropology is an increasingly developing discipline born about a century ago in the United States with the objective to contribute the knowledge of bone biology and physical anthropology to the emerging needs of the court of law. The development of research in biological and forensic anthropology has made rapid progress worldwide in the past few years, however, in most countries - with the exception of the United States - forensic anthropology work is still considered within the duties of the forensic pathologist. This paper attempts to summarise the history and development of forensic anthropology in Thailand by providing information on past and current research and practice that can help forensic practitioners to apply existing methods in forensic cases and mass disasters. It is hoped that the lessons learned from the tsunami catastrophe and the emerging need for positive identification in medicolegal settings will lead to rapid advances in education, training and professional engagement of anthropologists from the forensic departments and the law enforcement agencies in Thailand. PMID:26949023

  2. Integrating Forensic Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Funkhouser, John; Deslich, Barbara J.

    2000-01-01

    Explains the implementation of forensic science in an integrated curriculum and discusses the advantages of this approach. Lists the forensic science course syllabi studied in three high schools. Discusses the unit on polymers in detail. (YDS)

  3. Hazard Analysis and Disaster Preparedness in the Fairbanks North Star Borough, Alaska using Hazard Simulations, GIS, and Network Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaefer, K.; Prakash, A.; Witte, W.

    2011-12-01

    The Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB) lies in interior Alaska, an area that is dominated by semiarid, boreal forest climate. FNSB frequently witnesses flooding events, wild land fires, earthquakes, extreme winter storms and other natural and man-made hazards. Being a large 19,065 km2 area, with a population of approximately 97,000 residents, providing emergency services to residents in a timely manner is a challenge. With only four highways going in and out of the borough, and only two of those leading to another city, most residents do not have quick access to a main road. Should a major disaster occur and block one of the two highways, options for evacuating or getting supplies to the area quickly dwindle. We present the design of a Geographic Information System (GIS) and network analysis based decision support tool that we have created for planning and emergency response. This tool will be used by Emergency Service (Fire/EMS), Emergency Management, Hazardous Materials Team, and Law Enforcement Agencies within FNSB to prepare and respond to a variety of potential disasters. The GIS combines available road and address networks from different FNSB agencies with the 2010 census data. We used ESRI's ArcGIS and FEMA's HAZUS-MH software to run multiple disaster scenarios and create several evacuation and response plans. Network analysis resulted in determining response time and classifying the borough by response times to facilitate allocation of emergency resources. The resulting GIS database can be used by any responding agency in FNSB to determine possible evacuation routes, where to open evacuation centers, placement of resources, and emergency response times. We developed a specific emergency response plan for three common scenarios: (i) major wildfire threatening Fairbanks, (ii) a major earthquake, (iii) loss of power during flooding in a flood-prone area. We also combined the network analysis results with high resolution imagery and elevation data to determine 'one-way out' areas. These are areas that have only one road going in or out and if that road where to get shut down the residents would have no other way of evacuating.

  4. Disaster Response on September 11, 2001 Through the Lens of Statistical Network Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Schweinberger, Michael; Petrescu-Prahova, Miruna; Vu, Duy Quang

    2014-01-01

    The rescue and relief operations triggered by the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City demanded collaboration among hundreds of organisations. To shed light on the response to the September 11, 2001 attacks and help to plan and prepare the response to future disasters, we study the inter-organisational network that emerged in response to the attacks. Studying the inter-organisational network can help to shed light on (1) whether some organisations dominated the inter-organisational network and facilitated communication and coordination of the disaster response; (2) whether the dominating organisations were supposed to coordinate disaster response or emerged as coordinators in the wake of the disaster; and (3) the degree of network redundancy and sensitivity of the inter-organisational network to disturbances following the initial disaster. We introduce a Bayesian framework which can answer the substantive questions of interest while being as simple and parsimonious as possible. The framework allows organisations to have varying propensities to collaborate, while taking covariates into account, and allows to assess whether the inter-organisational network had network redundancyin the form of transitivityby using a test which may be regarded as a Bayesian score test. We discuss implications in terms of disaster management. PMID:24707073

  5. Forensic analysis of tertiary-butyl alcohol (TBA) detections in a hydrocarbon-rich groundwater basin.

    PubMed

    Quast, Konrad W; Levine, Audrey D; Kester, Janet E; Fordham, Carolyn L

    2016-04-01

    Tertiary-butyl alcohol (TBA), a high-production volume (HPV) chemical, was sporadically detected in groundwater and coalbed methane (CBM) wells in southeastern Colorado's hydrocarbon-rich Raton Basin. TBA concentrations in shallow water wells averaged 75.1 μg/L, while detections in deeper CBM wells averaged 14.4 μg/L. The detection of TBA prompted a forensic investigation to try to identify potential sources. Historic and recent data were reviewed to determine if there was a discernable pattern of TBA occurrence. Supplemental samples from domestic water wells, monitor wells, CBM wells, surface waters, and hydraulic fracturing (HF) fluids were analyzed for TBA in conjunction with methyl tertiary-butyl ether (MTBE) and ethyl tertiary-butyl ether (ETBE), proxies for evidence of contamination from reformulated gasoline or associated oxygenates. Exploratory microbiological sampling was conducted to determine if methanotrophic organisms co-occurred with TBA in individual wells. Meaningful comparisons of historic TBA data were limited due to widely varying reporting limits. Mapping of TBA occurrence did not reveal any spatial patterns or physical associations with CBM operations or contamination plumes. Additionally, TBA was not detected in HF fluids or surface water samples. Given the widespread use of TBA in industrial and consumer products, including water well completion materials, it is likely that multiple diffuse sources exist. Exploratory data on stable isotopes, dissolved gases, and microbial profiling provide preliminary evidence that methanotrophic activity may be producing TBA from naturally occurring isobutane. Reported TBA concentrations were significantly below a conservative risk-based drinking water screening level of 8000 μg/L derived from animal toxicity data. PMID:26946495

  6. Automating the Coupling of ORIGEN with GADRAS via the Fallout Analysis Tool for National Technical Nuclear Forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Monterial, Mateusz; Jodoin, Vincent J; Lefebvre, Jordan P; Peplow, Douglas E.; Hooper, David A

    2012-01-01

    Nuclear forensic teams will be deployed to collect and evaluate fallout samples on the ground in the scenario of a low-yield nuclear detonation in a heavily populated area. Quick non-destructive methods of predicting the quality of the sample before it is analyzed in detail are essential for efficient post-event collections. In this work, the process of exporting Defense Land Fallout Interpretive Code (DELFIC) results into Gamma Detector Response and Analysis Software (GADRAS) has been automated within the Fallout Analysis Tool. This coupling allows for the simulation of detector responses to fallout samples with varying degrees of fractionation. The degree to which the samples are fractionated depends on the location of the samples in the fallout field. In the following study, this phenomenon is examined, as its understanding is important to the investigation of debris distribution. The simulated detector spectra from GADRAS can be used to compare peak ratios of volatile-refractory isotope pairs in order to determine the degree of fractionation. Simulated fractionated fallout samples from DELFIC for a 10 kt, pure 235U fission surface burst were modeled for distances ranging to 256 km out from ground zero, and for times up to 1 week from detonation. The fractionation ratios, also known as r values, from isotope concentrations, photon lines and peak areas of four volatile-refractory pairs were calculated and compared. Fractionation prediction via the peak areas method was evaluated for each pair by comparing the results with the simulated radionuclide inventory.

  7. Thematic Issue: Forensics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benjamin, James B., Ed.

    1977-01-01

    The 18 essays in this journal issue provide insight into the theory, issues and practice of forensics. They consider the following topics: an agenda for forensics education; problems of forensics in the United States today; improvement of debate practice and teaching; rhetorical dimensions of argumentation; use of speeches as an instructional…

  8. Interim Report on SNP analysis and forensic microarray probe design for South American hemorrhagic fever viruses, tick-borne encephalitis virus, henipaviruses, Old World Arenaviruses, filoviruses, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever viruses, Rift Valley fever

    SciTech Connect

    Jaing, C; Gardner, S

    2012-06-05

    The goal of this project is to develop forensic genotyping assays for select agent viruses, enhancing the current capabilities for the viral bioforensics and law enforcement community. We used a multipronged approach combining bioinformatics analysis, PCR-enriched samples, microarrays and TaqMan assays to develop high resolution and cost effective genotyping methods for strain level forensic discrimination of viruses. We have leveraged substantial experience and efficiency gained through year 1 on software development, SNP discovery, TaqMan signature design and phylogenetic signature mapping to scale up the development of forensics signatures in year 2. In this report, we have summarized the whole genome wide SNP analysis and microarray probe design for forensics characterization of South American hemorrhagic fever viruses, tick-borne encephalitis viruses and henipaviruses, Old World Arenaviruses, filoviruses, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus, Rift Valley fever virus and Japanese encephalitis virus.

  9. High Performance Proactive Digital Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alharbi, Soltan; Moa, Belaid; Weber-Jahnke, Jens; Traore, Issa

    2012-10-01

    With the increase in the number of digital crimes and in their sophistication, High Performance Computing (HPC) is becoming a must in Digital Forensics (DF). According to the FBI annual report, the size of data processed during the 2010 fiscal year reached 3,086 TB (compared to 2,334 TB in 2009) and the number of agencies that requested Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory assistance increasing from 689 in 2009 to 722 in 2010. Since most investigation tools are both I/O and CPU bound, the next-generation DF tools are required to be distributed and offer HPC capabilities. The need for HPC is even more evident in investigating crimes on clouds or when proactive DF analysis and on-site investigation, requiring semi-real time processing, are performed. Although overcoming the performance challenge is a major goal in DF, as far as we know, there is almost no research on HPC-DF except for few papers. As such, in this work, we extend our work on the need of a proactive system and present a high performance automated proactive digital forensic system. The most expensive phase of the system, namely proactive analysis and detection, uses a parallel extension of the iterative z algorithm. It also implements new parallel information-based outlier detection algorithms to proactively and forensically handle suspicious activities. To analyse a large number of targets and events and continuously do so (to capture the dynamics of the system), we rely on a multi-resolution approach to explore the digital forensic space. Data set from the Honeynet Forensic Challenge in 2001 is used to evaluate the system from DF and HPC perspectives.

  10. Adult carrion arthropod community in a tropical rainforest of Malaysia: analysis on three common forensic entomology animal models.

    PubMed

    Azwandi, A; Nina Keterina, H; Owen, L C; Nurizzati, M D; Omar, B

    2013-09-01

    Decomposing carrion provides a temporary microhabitat and food source for a distinct community of organisms. Arthropods constitute a major part of this community and can be utilized to estimate the postmortem interval (PMI) of cadavers during criminal investigations. However, in Malaysia, knowledge of carrion arthropod assemblages and their succession is superficial. Therefore, a study on three types of forensic entomology animal model was conducted from 27 September 2010 to 28 October 2010 in a tropical rainforest at National University of Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia. Over one month collections of arthropods were made on nine animal carcasses: three laboratory rats (Rattus norvegicus, mean weight: 0.508 ± 0.027 kg), three rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus, mean weight: 2.538 ± 0.109 kg) and three long tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis, mean weight: 5.750 ± 0.551 kg). A total of 31,433 arthropods belonging to eight orders and twenty-eight families were collected from all carcasses. Among 2924 of adults flies collected, approximately 19% were calliphorids with Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius, 1794) being the most abundant. Arthropod taxon richness was lower on rat carcasses compared to that of rabbit and monkey carcasses, and this was more apparent during the first week of decomposition. However, there were no significant differences in Shannon-Weiner index (H'), Simpson dominance index (C) and Pielou's Evenness index (J) between different animal model. The arthropod assemblages associated to animal model were different significantly (p<0.05) while decomposition stage was a significant factor influencing insect assemblages (p<0.05). Analysis on the arthropods succession indicated that some taxa have a clear visitation period while the others, particularly Coleoptera, did not show a clear successional pattern thus require futher insect succession study. Although human bodies were not possible for the succession study, most of the arthropods collected are necrophagous, and will also possibly colonize human cadaver, and potentially be useful in assisting in estimates of PMI in future forensic cases in Malaysia. PMID:24189678

  11. Automated Genotyping of a Highly Informative Panel of 40 Short Insertion-Deletion Polymorphisms Resolved in Polyacrylamide Gels for Forensic Identification and Kinship Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Pena, Heloisa B.; Pena, Sérgio D. J.

    2012-01-01

    Objective Short insertion-deletion polymorphisms (indels) are the second most abundant form of genetic variations in humans after SNPs. Since indel alleles differ in size, they can be typed using the same methodological approaches and equipment currently utilized for microsatellite genotyping, which is already operational in forensic laboratories. We have previously shown that a panel of 40 carefully chosen indels has excellent potential for forensic identification, with combined probability of identity (match probability) of 7.09 × 10–17 for Europeans. Methods We describe the successful development of a multiplex system for genotyping the 40-indel panel in long thin denaturing polyacrylamide gels with silver staining. We also demonstrate that the system can be easily fully automated with a simple large scanner and commercial software. Results and Conclusion The great advantage of the new system of typing is its very low cost. The total price for laboratory equipment is less than EUR 10,000.-, and genotyping of an individual patient will cost less than EUR 10.- in supplies. Thus, the 40-indel panel described here and the newly developed ‘low-tech’ analysis platform represent useful new tools for forensic identification and kinship analysis in laboratories with limited budgets, especially in developing countries. PMID:22851937

  12. Updated meta-analysis of the MMPI-2 symptom validity scale (FBS): verified utility in forensic practice.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Nathaniel W; Hoelzle, James B; Sweet, Jerry J; Arbisi, Paul A; Demakis, George J

    2010-05-01

    Clinical research interest in the symptom reporting validity scale currently known as the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 (MMPI-2) Symptom Validity Scale (FBS) has continued to be strong, with multiple new publications annually in peer-reviewed journals that publish psychological and neuropsychological assessment research. Related to this growth in relevant literature, the present study was conducted to update the Nelson, Sweet, and Demakis (2006b) FBS meta-analysis. A total of 83 FBS studies (43 new studies) were identified, and 32 (38.5%) met inclusion criteria. Analyses were conducted on a pooled sample of 2218 over-reporting and 3123 comparison participants. Large omnibus effect sizes were observed for FBS, Obvious-Subtle (O-S), and the Dissimulation Scale-Revised (Dsr2) scales. Moderate effect sizes were observed for the following scales: Back Infrequency (Fb), Gough's F-K, Infrequency (F), Infrequency Psychopathology (Fp), and Dissimulation (Ds2). Moderator analyses illustrate that relative to the F-family scales, FBS exhibited larger effect sizes when (1) effort is known to be insufficient and (2) evaluation is conducted in the context of traumatic brain injury. Overall, current results summarize an extensive literature that continues to support use of FBS in forensic neuropsychology practice. PMID:20473828

  13. Forensic analysis of laser printed ink by X-ray fluorescence and laser-excited plume fluorescence.

    PubMed

    Chu, Po-Chun; Cai, Bruno Yue; Tsoi, Yeuk Ki; Yuen, Ronald; Leung, Kelvin S Y; Cheung, Nai-Ho

    2013-05-01

    We demonstrated a minimally destructive two-tier approach for multielement forensic analysis of laser-printed ink. The printed document was first screened using a portable-X-ray fluorescence (XRF) probe. If the results were not conclusive, a laser microprobe was then deployed. The laser probe was based on a two-pulse scheme: the first laser pulse ablated a thin layer of the printed ink; the second laser pulse at 193 nm induced multianalytes in the desorbed ink to fluoresce. We analyzed four brands of black toners. The toners were printed on paper in the form of patches or letters or overprinted on another ink. The XRF probe could sort the four brands if the printed letters were larger than font 20. It could not tell the printing sequence in the case of overprints. The laser probe was more discriminatory; it could sort the toner brands and reveal the overprint sequence regardless of font size while the sampled area was not visibly different from neighboring areas even under the microscope. In terms of general analytical performance, the laser probe featured tens of micrometer lateral resolution and tens to hundreds of nm depth resolution and atto-mole mass detection limits. It could handle samples of arbitrary size and shape and was air compatible, and no sample pretreatment was necessary. It will prove useful whenever high-resolution and high sensitivity 3D elemental mapping is required. PMID:23570307

  14. The Application of Chemical Derivatization in Forensic Drug Chemistry for Gas and High-Performance Liquid Chromatographic Methods of Analysis.

    PubMed

    Moore, J M

    1990-12-01

    The analyses of solid-dosage forensic drug samples can be enhanced by chemical derivatization followed by gas chromatography or high-performance liquid chromatography. Using these techniques permits improved detection and chromatography of some illicit drugs and their manufacturing by-products. This review focuses on the use of chemical derivatization in conjunction with gas chromatography-flame ionization detection, gas chromatography-electron capture detection, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, high-performance liquid chromatography-ultraviolet detection and high-performance liquid chromatography-fluorescence detection in the analysis of illicit drug samples. These drugs include the amphetamines, barbiturates, cannabis, fentanyls, opium, and hallucinogens. Discussion on sensitivity enhancement and determination of enantiomeric composition using gas chromatography and high-performance liquid chromatography is included. An entire section is devoted to the chemical derivatization and chromatographic analyses of manufacturing by-products found in illicit amphetamine and methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine samples. This review also includes a section that describes practical elements and experimental design associated with chemical derivatization-chromatographic analyses.. PMID:26266839

  15. Forensic analysis of printing inks using tandem Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy and Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Subedi, Kiran; Trejos, Tatiana; Almirall, José

    2015-01-01

    Elemental analysis, using either LA-ICP-MS or LIBS, can be used for the chemical characterization of materials of forensic interest to discriminate between source materials originating from different sources and also for the association of materials known to originate from the same source. In this study, a tandem LIBS/LA-ICP-MS system that combines the benefits of both LIBS and LA-ICP-MS was evaluated for the characterization of samples of printing inks (toners, inkjets, intaglio and offset.). The performance of both laser sampling methods is presented. A subset of 9 black laser toners, 10 colored (CMYK) inkjet samples, 12 colored (CMYK) offset samples and 12 intaglio inks originating from different manufacturing sources were analyzed to evaluate the discrimination capability of the tandem method. These samples were selected because they presented a very similar elemental profile by LA-ICP-MS. Although typical discrimination between different ink sources is found to be > 99% for a variety of inks when only LA-ICP-MS was used for the analysis, additional discrimination was achieved by combining the elemental results from the LIBS analysis to the LA-ICP-MS analysis in the tandem technique, enhancing the overall discrimination capability of the individual laser ablation methods. The LIBS measurements of the Ca, Fe, K and Si signals, in particular, improved the discrimination for this specific set of different ink samples previously shown to exhibit very similar LA-ICP-MS elemental profiles. The combination of these two techniques in a single setup resulted in better discrimination of the printing inks with two distinct fingerprint spectra, providing information from atomic/ionic emissions and isotopic composition (m/z) for each ink sample.

  16. Combining spectroscopic data in the forensic analysis of paint: Application of a multiblock technique as chemometric tool.

    PubMed

    Lambert, Danny; Muehlethaler, Cyril; Esseiva, Pierre; Massonnet, Geneviève

    2016-06-01

    A study (Muehlethaler et al. [9]) has demonstrated the application of chemometrics for the analysis of domestic red paints. The paints have been analyzed with IR and Raman spectroscopies. As a result of these analyses, exploratory techniques, such as principal component analysis (PCA) and hierarchical clusters analysis (HCA) have been applied to both IR and Raman spectra. This allowed to observe the structure of the data among those red paints, and infer potential groups among them and to propose a classification model based on their chemical composition. IR spectroscopy showed group patterns related mainly to the binder and extender composition of the paints, whereas Raman spectroscopy data were mainly related to the pigment composition. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the potential of a Multiblock algorithm applied to the same data set. The concept of Multiblock, as a chemometric tool, is to combine data from several different analytical techniques in order to visualize most of the information at once. IR and Raman spectroscopy are then considered as "blocks" of data of the same dataset. One algorithm called common component and specific weight analysis (CCSWA) has been used in order to produce independent PCAs for each block, and the combined (common) information in a score plot. The results of this study showed group patterns of the analyzed paints, related to both binder and pigment compositions in one single score plot. Moreover, the number of groups observed with the multiblock representation (20 groups) is higher than independent PCAs projections (12 and 7 groups for IR and Raman respectively). This new application of chemometrics showed a great potential in forensic science, as practitioners often use a combination of several analytical techniques in order to characterize samples. This could be helpful when multiple and complementary analytical techniques are used in order to characterize and compare paint samples. PMID:27060443

  17. Perievent panic attack and depression after the World Trade Center disaster: a structural equation model analysis.

    PubMed

    Adams, Richard E; Boscarino, Joseph A

    2011-01-01

    Research suggests that perievent panic attacks--panic attacks in temporal proximity to traumatic events--are predictive of later mental health status, including the onset of depression. Using a community sample of New York City residents interviewed 1 year and 2 years after the World Trade Center Disaster, we estimated a structural equation model (SEM) using pre-disaster psychological status and post-disaster life events, together with psychosocial resources, to assess the relationship between perievent panic and later onset depression. Bivariate results revealed a significant association between perievent panic and both year-1 and year-2 depression. Results for the SEM, however showed that perievent panic was predictive of year-1 depression, but not year-2 depression, once potential confounders were controlled Year-2 stressors and year-2 psychosocial resources were the best predictors of year-2 depression onset. Pre-disaster psychological problems were directly implicated in year-1 depression, but not year-2 depression. We conclude that a conceptual model that includes pre- and post-disaster variables best explains the complex causal pathways between psychological status, stressor exposure, perievent panic attacks, and depression onset two years after the World Trade Center attacks. PMID:21957721

  18. Perievent Panic Attack and Depression after the World Trade Center Disaster: A Structural Equation Model Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Richard E.; Boscarino, Joseph A.

    2011-01-01

    Research suggests that perievent panic attacks – panic attacks in temporal proximity to traumatic events – are predictive of later mental health status, including the onset of depression. Using a community sample of New York City residents interviewed 1 year and 2 years after the World Trade Center Disaster, we estimated a structural equation model (SEM) using pre-disaster psychological status and post-disaster life events, together with psychosocial resources, to assess the relationship between perievent panic and later onset depression. Bivariate results revealed a significant association between perievent panic and both year-1 and year-2 depression. Results for the SEM, however, showed that perievent panic was predictive of year-1 depression, but not year-2 depression, once potential confounders were controlled. Year-2 stressors and year-2 psychosocial resources were the best predictors of year-2 depression onset. Pre-disaster psychological problems were directly implicated in year-1 depression, but not year-2 depression. We conclude that a conceptual model that includes pre- and post-disaster variables best explains the complex causal pathways between psychological status, stressor exposure, perievent panic attacks, and depression onset two years after the World Trade Center attacks. PMID:21957721

  19. Analysis of Hospital Disaster in South Korea from 1990 to 2008

    PubMed Central

    Back, Min-Ho

    2010-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study is to systematically review and analyze disasters involving South Korean hospitals from 1990 and to introduce a newly developed implement to manage patients' evacuation. Materials and Methods We searched for studies reporting disaster preparedness and hospital injuries in South Korean hospitals from 1990 to 2008, by using the Korean Studies Information Service System (KISS, copyright Korean Studies Information Co, Ltd, Seoul, Korea) and, simultaneously, hospital injuries which were reported and regarded as a disaster. Then, each study and injury were analyzed. Results Five studies (3 on prevention and structure, 1 on implement of new device, and 1 on basic supplement to current methods) and 8 injuries were found within this period. During the evacuations, the mean gait speed of walking patients was 0.82 m/s and the mean time of evacuation of individual patients was 38.39 seconds. Regarding structure evaluation, almost all hospitals had no balconies in patient rooms; hospital elevators were placed peripherally and were insufficient in number. As a new device, Savingsun (evacuation elevator) was introduced and had some merits as a fast and easy tool, regardless of patient status or the height of hospital. Conclusion In South Korea, preparation for hospital disasters was noted to be insufficient but has involved various departments such as architectural, clinical, and building operations. In addition, Savignsun has been shown to effectively evacuate and save patients in a hospital disaster. PMID:20879068

  20. Forensic evaluations in psychiatry

    PubMed Central

    Chadda, R. K.

    2013-01-01

    Forensic psychiatry is an important subspecialty of psychiatry. Forensic psychiatrists play an important role in the society in assisting the judiciary in many complicated cases. In India, forensic psychiatry work is undertaken mostly by the general psychiatrists. Forensic psychiatric assessments are often associated with an element of anxiety or fear for a young psychiatrist. The present paper aims at familiarizing the readers with forensic evaluation in various situations so that they are able to carry out the assessments in real-life situations comfortably. Various steps of forensic assessment in different situations are discussed in the background of real-life cases. Assessment areas include criminal responsibility, fitness to plead, issue of guardianship, assessment of mental status, testamentary capacity and others. The paper gives some general guidelines on forensic psychiatric assessment in practical situations in our country. The readers are advised to refer to the standard textbooks and the Indian law for further details. PMID:24459315

  1. Accreditation standards for undergraduate forensic science programs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Marilyn Tebbs

    Undergraduate forensic science programs are experiencing unprecedented growth in numbers of programs offered and, as a result, student enrollments are increasing. Currently, however, these programs are not subject to professional specialized accreditation. This study sought to identify desirable student outcome measures for undergraduate forensic science programs that should be incorporated into such an accreditation process. To determine desirable student outcomes, three types of data were collected and analyzed. All the existing undergraduate forensic science programs in the United States were examined with regard to the input measures of degree requirements and curriculum content, and for the output measures of mission statements and student competencies. Accreditation procedures and guidelines for three other science-based disciplines, computer science, dietetics, and nursing, were examined to provide guidance on accreditation processes for forensic science education programs. Expert opinion on outcomes for program graduates was solicited from the major stakeholders of undergraduate forensic science programs-forensic science educators, crime laboratory directors, and recent graduates. Opinions were gathered by using a structured Internet-based survey; the total response rate was 48%. Examination of the existing undergraduate forensic science programs revealed that these programs do not use outcome measures. Of the accreditation processes for other science-based programs, nursing education provided the best model for forensic science education, due primarily to the balance between the generality and the specificity of the outcome measures. From the analysis of the questionnaire data, preliminary student outcomes, both general and discipline-specific, suitable for use in the accreditation of undergraduate forensic science programs were determined. The preliminary results were reviewed by a panel of experts and, based on their recommendations, the outcomes identified were revised and refined. The results of this study were used to identify student outcomes and to suggest accreditation standards and an accreditation process for undergraduate forensic science programs based on those outcomes.

  2. Fire Disasters in the Twentieth Century

    PubMed Central

    Cavallini, M.; Papagni, M.F.; Baruffaldi Preis, F.W.

    2007-01-01

    Summary In the field of natural and man-made disasters, fire has played a predominant role. A report is presented of fire disasters in the twentieth century, with a chronological analysis of different worldwide typologies. PMID:21991077

  3. Nuclear forensics: Soil content

    SciTech Connect

    Beebe, Merilyn Amy

    2015-08-31

    Nuclear Forensics is a growing field that is concerned with all stages of the process of creating and detonating a nuclear weapon. The main goal is to prevent nuclear attack by locating and securing nuclear material before it can be used in an aggressive manner. This stage of the process is mostly paperwork; laws, regulations, treaties, and declarations made by individual countries or by the UN Security Council. There is some preliminary leg work done in the form of field testing detection equipment and tracking down orphan materials; however, none of these have yielded any spectacular or useful results. In the event of a nuclear attack, the first step is to analyze the post detonation debris to aid in the identification of the responsible party. This aspect of the nuclear forensics process, while reactive in nature, is more scientific. A rock sample taken from the detonation site can be dissolved into liquid form and analyzed to determine its chemical composition. The chemical analysis of spent nuclear material can provide valuable information if properly processed and analyzed. In order to accurately evaluate the results, scientists require information on the natural occurring elements in the detonation zone. From this information, scientists can determine what percentage of the element originated in the bomb itself rather than the environment. To this end, element concentrations in soils from sixty-nine different cities are given, along with activity concentrations for uranium, thorium, potassium, and radium in various building materials. These data are used in the analysis program Python.

  4. Information Dissemination Analysis of Different Media towards the Application for Disaster Pre-Warning

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Nan; Huang, Hong; Su, Boni; Zhao, Jinlong; Zhang, Bo

    2014-01-01

    Knowing the information dissemination mechanisms of different media and having an efficient information dissemination plan for disaster pre-warning plays a very important role in reducing losses and ensuring the safety of human beings. In this paper we established models of information dissemination for six typical information media, including short message service (SMS), microblogs, news portals, cell phones, television, and oral communication. Then, the information dissemination capability of each medium concerning individuals of different ages, genders, and residential areas was simulated, and the dissemination characteristics were studied. Finally, radar graphs were used to illustrate comprehensive assessments of the six media; these graphs show directly the information dissemination characteristics of all media. The models and the results are essential for improving the efficiency of information dissemination for the purpose of disaster pre-warning and for formulating emergency plans which help to reduce the possibility of injuries, deaths and other losses in a disaster. PMID:24878739

  5. Geospatial analysis of spaceborne remote sensing data for assessing disaster impacts and modeling surface runoff in the built-environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wodajo, Bikila Teklu

    Every year, coastal disasters such as hurricanes and floods claim hundreds of lives and severely damage homes, businesses, and lifeline infrastructure. This research was motivated by the 2005 Hurricane Katrina disaster, which devastated the Mississippi and Louisiana Gulf Coast. The primary objective was to develop a geospatial decision-support system for extracting built-up surfaces and estimating disaster impacts using spaceborne remote sensing satellite imagery. Pre-Katrina 1-m Ikonos imagery of a 5km x 10km area of Gulfport, Mississippi, was used as source data to develop the built-up area and natural surfaces or BANS classification methodology. Autocorrelation of 0.6 or higher values related to spectral reflectance values of groundtruth pixels were used to select spectral bands and establish the BANS decision criteria of unique ranges of reflectance values. Surface classification results using GeoMedia Pro geospatial analysis for Gulfport sample areas, based on BANS criteria and manually drawn polygons, were within +/-7% of the groundtruth. The difference between the BANS results and the groundtruth was statistically not significant. BANS is a significant improvement over other supervised classification methods, which showed only 50% correctly classified pixels. The storm debris and erosion estimation or SDE methodology was developed from analysis of pre- and post-Katrina surface classification results of Gulfport samples. The SDE severity level criteria considered hurricane and flood damages and vulnerability of inhabited built-environment. A linear regression model, with +0.93 Pearson R-value, was developed for predicting SDE as a function of pre-disaster percent built-up area. SDE predictions for Gulfport sample areas, used for validation, were within +/-4% of calculated values. The damage cost model considered maintenance, rehabilitation and reconstruction costs related to infrastructure damage and community impacts of Hurricane Katrina. The developed models were implemented for a study area along I-10 considering the predominantly flood-induced damages in New Orleans. The BANS methodology was calibrated for 0.6-m QuickBird2 multispectral imagery of Karachi Port area in Pakistan. The results were accurate within +/-6% of the groundtruth. Due to its computational simplicity, the unit hydrograph method is recommended for geospatial visualization of surface runoff in the built-environment using BANS surface classification maps and elevations data. Key words. geospatial analysis, satellite imagery, built-environment, hurricane, disaster impacts, runoff.

  6. A person-centered analysis of posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms following a natural disaster: predictors of latent class membership.

    PubMed

    Rosellini, Anthony J; Coffey, Scott F; Tracy, Melissa; Galea, Sandro

    2014-01-01

    The present study applied latent class analysis to a sample of 810 participants residing in southern Mississippi at the time of Hurricane Katrina to determine if people would report distinct, meaningful PTSD symptom classes following a natural disaster. We found a four-class solution that distinguished persons on the basis of PTSD symptom severity/pervasiveness (Severe, Moderate, Mild, and Negligible Classes). Multinomial logistic regression models demonstrated that membership in the Severe and Moderate Classes was associated with potentially traumatic hurricane-specific experiences (e.g., being physically injured, seeing dead bodies), pre-hurricane traumatic events, co-occurring depression symptom severity and suicidal ideation, certain religious beliefs, and post-hurricane stressors (e.g., social support). Collectively, the findings suggest that more severe/pervasive typologies of natural disaster PTSD may be predicted by the frequency and severity of exposure to stressful/traumatic experiences (before, during, and after the disaster), co-occurring psychopathology, and specific internal beliefs. PMID:24334161

  7. A Person-Centered Analysis of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms Following a Natural Disaster: Predictors of Latent Class Membership

    PubMed Central

    Rosellini, Anthony J.; Coffey, Scott F.; Tracy, Melissa; Galea, Sandro

    2014-01-01

    The present study applied latent class analysis to a sample of 810 participants residing in southern Mississippi at the time of Hurricane Katrina to determine if people would report distinct, meaningful PTSD symptom classes following a natural disaster. We found a four-class solution that distinguished persons on the basis of PTSD symptom severity/pervasiveness (Severe, Moderate, Mild, and Negligible Classes). Multinomial logistic regression models demonstrated that membership in the Severe and Moderate Classes was associated with potentially traumatic hurricane-specific experiences (e.g., being physically injured, seeing dead bodies), pre-hurricane traumatic events, co-occurring depression symptom severity and suicidal ideation, certain religious beliefs, and post-hurricane stressors (e.g., social support). Collectively, the findings suggest that more severe/pervasive typologies of natural disaster PTSD may be predicted by the frequency and severity of exposure to stressful/traumatic experiences (before, during, and after the disaster), co-occurring psychopathology, and specific internal beliefs. PMID:24334161

  8. Land use change and landslide characteristics analysis for community-based disaster mitigation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chien-Yuan; Huang, Wen-Lin

    2013-05-01

    On August 8, 2009, Typhoon Morakot brought heavy rain to Taiwan, causing numerous landslides and debris flows in the Taihe village area of Meishan Township, Chiayi County, in south-central Taiwan. In the Taihe land is primary used for agriculture and land use management may be a factor in the area's landslides. This study explores Typhoon Morakot-induced landslides and land use changes between 1999 and 2009 using GIS with the aid of field investigation. Spot 5 satellite images with a resolution of 2.5 m are used for landslide interpretation and manually digitalized in GIS. A statistical analysis for landslide frequency-area distribution was used to identify the landslide characteristics associated with different types of land use. There were 243 landslides with a total area of 2.75 km(2) in the study area. The area is located in intrinsically fragile combinations of sandstone and shale. Typhoon Morakot-induced landslides show a power-law distribution in the study area. Landslides were mainly located in steep slope areas containing natural forest and in areas planted with bamboo, tea, and betel nut. Land covered with natural forest shows the highest landslide ratio, followed by bamboo, betel nut, and tea. Landslides thus show a higher ratio in areas planted with shallow root vegetation such as bamboo, betel nut, and tea. Furthermore, the degree of basin development is proportional to the landslide ratio. The results show that a change in vegetation cover results in a modified landslide area and frequency and changed land use areas have higher landslide ratios than non-changed. Land use management and community-based disaster prevention are needed in mountainous areas of Taiwan for hazard mitigation. PMID:22961329

  9. Evaluation of methods to improve the extraction and recovery of DNA from cotton swabs for forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Adamowicz, Michael S; Stasulli, Dominique M; Sobestanovich, Emily M; Bille, Todd W

    2014-01-01

    Samples for forensic DNA analysis are often collected from a wide variety of objects using cotton or nylon tipped swabs. Testing has shown that significant quantities of DNA are retained on the swab, however, and subsequently lost. When processing evidentiary samples, the recovery of the maximum amount of available DNA is critical, potentially dictating whether a usable profile can be derived from a piece of evidence or not. The QIAamp DNA Investigator extraction kit was used with its recommended protocol for swabs (one hour incubation at 56°C) as a baseline. Results indicate that over 50% of the recoverable DNA may be retained on the cotton swab tip, or otherwise lost, for both blood and buccal cell samples when using this protocol. The protocol's incubation time and temperature were altered, as was incubating while shaking or stationary to test for increases in recovery efficiency. An additional step was then tested that included periodic re-suspension of the swab tip in the extraction buffer during incubation. Aliquots of liquid blood or a buccal cell suspension were deposited and dried on cotton swabs and compared with swab-less controls. The concentration of DNA in each extract was quantified and STR analysis was performed to assess the quality of the extracted DNA. Stationary incubations and those performed at 65°C did not result in significant gains in DNA yield. Samples incubated for 24 hours yielded less DNA. Increased yields were observed with three and 18 hour incubation periods. Increases in DNA yields were also observed using a swab re-suspension method for both cell types. The swab re-suspension method yielded an average two-fold increase in recovered DNA yield with buccal cells and an average three-fold increase with blood cells. These findings demonstrate that more of the DNA collected on swabs can be recovered with specific protocol alterations. PMID:25549111

  10. Evaluation of Methods to Improve the Extraction and Recovery of DNA from Cotton Swabs for Forensic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Adamowicz, Michael S.; Stasulli, Dominique M.; Sobestanovich, Emily M.; Bille, Todd W.

    2014-01-01

    Samples for forensic DNA analysis are often collected from a wide variety of objects using cotton or nylon tipped swabs. Testing has shown that significant quantities of DNA are retained on the swab, however, and subsequently lost. When processing evidentiary samples, the recovery of the maximum amount of available DNA is critical, potentially dictating whether a usable profile can be derived from a piece of evidence or not. The QIAamp DNA Investigator extraction kit was used with its recommended protocol for swabs (one hour incubation at 56°C) as a baseline. Results indicate that over 50% of the recoverable DNA may be retained on the cotton swab tip, or otherwise lost, for both blood and buccal cell samples when using this protocol. The protocol’s incubation time and temperature were altered, as was incubating while shaking or stationary to test for increases in recovery efficiency. An additional step was then tested that included periodic re-suspension of the swab tip in the extraction buffer during incubation. Aliquots of liquid blood or a buccal cell suspension were deposited and dried on cotton swabs and compared with swab-less controls. The concentration of DNA in each extract was quantified and STR analysis was performed to assess the quality of the extracted DNA. Stationary incubations and those performed at 65°C did not result in significant gains in DNA yield. Samples incubated for 24 hours yielded less DNA. Increased yields were observed with three and 18 hour incubation periods. Increases in DNA yields were also observed using a swab re-suspension method for both cell types. The swab re-suspension method yielded an average two-fold increase in recovered DNA yield with buccal cells and an average three-fold increase with blood cells. These findings demonstrate that more of the DNA collected on swabs can be recovered with specific protocol alterations. PMID:25549111

  11. Open Source Live Distributions for Computer Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giustini, Giancarlo; Andreolini, Mauro; Colajanni, Michele

    Current distributions of open source forensic software provide digital investigators with a large set of heterogeneous tools. Their use is not always focused on the target and requires high technical expertise. We present a new GNU/Linux live distribution, named CAINE (Computer Aided INvestigative Environment) that contains a collection of tools wrapped up into a user friendly environment. The CAINE forensic framework introduces novel important features, aimed at filling the interoperability gap across different forensic tools. Moreover, it provides a homogeneous graphical interface that drives digital investigators during the acquisition and analysis of electronic evidence, and it offers a semi-automatic mechanism for the creation of the final report.

  12. [The dentist as an expert in disasters: dental identification in the disaster with the Zeebruge ferry. 1990].

    PubMed

    De Valck, Eddy

    2009-01-01

    The Herald of Free Enterprise Disaster on the 6th of March 1987 just outside Zeebrugge harbour was without any doubt a disaster of major proportions. The ferry disaster highlighted different approaches in major incident procedures in both countries involved but nevertheless the identification team which was composed of both British and Belgian specialists did perform good work. The identification of the victims had to be done in three phases each of them with its own specific work and problems. As the process of identification of bodies is an exacting science, and forensic odontology is known to be among the most reliable scientific methods in mass disasters, it is easily understood that forensic odontology took an active part in all three phases of the identification process. PMID:20178171

  13. Disaster Master

    MedlinePlus

    ... turn in the hot seat and become a Disaster Master! Print out chapters of your own graphic ... Level 1 - Wildfire Level 2 - Tornado Level 3 - Hurricane/Blackout Level 4 - Home Fire Level 5: Winter ...

  14. Rainfall and snow-melt triggered glacial lake outbursts: a systematic analysis of the Kedarnath (Uttarakhand, India), June 2013 disaster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, Simon; Rastner, Philipp; Arora, Manohar; Huggel, Christian; Stoffel, Markus

    2015-04-01

    Heavy rainfall in early June 2013 triggered flash flooding and landslides throughout the Indian Himalayan state of Uttarakhand, killing more than 6000 people. The destruction of roads and trekking routes left around 100,000 pilgrims and tourists stranded. Most fatalities and damages resulted directly from a lake outburst and debris flow disaster originating from above the village of Kedarnath on June 16 and 17. Here we provide a first systematic analysis of the contributing factors leading to the Kedarnath disaster, both in terms of hydro-meteorological triggering (rainfall, snowmelt, and temperature) and topographic predisposition. Specifically, the topographic characteristics of the Charobari lake watershed above Kedarnath are compared with other glacial lakes across the northwestern Indian Himalayan states of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, and implications for glacier lake outburst hazard assessment in a changing climate are discussed. Our analysis suggests that the early onset of heavy monsoon rainfall (390 mm, June 10 - 17) immediately following a prolonged four week period of unusually rapid snow cover depletion and elevated streamflow is the crucial hydro-meteorological factor, resulting in slope saturation and significant runoff into the small seasonal glacial lake. Over a four week period the MODIS-derived snow covered area above Kedarnath decreased nearly 50%, from above average coverage in mid-May to well below average coverage by the second week of June. Such a rapid decrease has not been observed in the previous 13-year record, where the average decrease in snow covered area over the same four week window is only 15%. The unusual situation of the lake being dammed in a steep, unstable paraglacial environment, but fed entirely from snow-melt and rainfall within a fluvial dominated watershed is important in the context of this disaster. A simple scheme enabling large-scale recognition of such an unfavorable topographic setting is presented, and on the basis of all assessed watershed parameters, the situation at Charobari lake indicates an anomalous predisposition towards rapid runoff and infilling during enhanced snowmelt or heavy rainfall. In view of projected 21st century changes in monsoon timing and heavy precipitation in South Asia, more emphasis should be given to potential hydro-meteorological triggering of lake outburst and related debris flow disasters in the Himalayas. The potential for Kedarnath-type lake breaching may further increase as glaciers recede or ultimately disappear, and watersheds become increasingly rainfall dominated. Hence, a long-term perspective to glacier lake outburst hazard assessment and management is required, as the greatest threat from hydro-meteorological triggering of related disasters may only be realized in an ice-free environment.

  15. [Natural disasters].

    PubMed

    Smolka, A

    1988-07-01

    The attempt is made to illustrate the role played by natural disasters in the history of the earth and mankind by examples of past catastrophes. Subsequently, the earthquake of Tangshan/China in 1976 and the hypothetical scenario of a repeat of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake in a modern setting serve as a basis for discussion of the significance of natural disasters in modern times. PMID:3211205

  16. A Cross-Cultural Analysis of Stance in Disaster News Reports

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Lian; Stevenson, Marie

    2013-01-01

    This study examines stance in cross-cultural media discourse by comparing disaster news reports on the Sichuan earthquake of May 2008 in a Chinese, an Australian Chinese, and an Australian newspaper. The stance taken in the news reports is examined using the Attitude sub-system of Martin and White's (2005) Appraisal framework. The analysis…

  17. Ideas about Earthquakes after Experiencing a Natural Disaster in Taiwan: An Analysis of Students' Worldviews.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2001-01-01

    Explores students' worldviews as revealed by their ideas about the causality of earthquakes after experiencing the natural disaster. Finds that students accept scientific ideas and abandon their original worldviews, accept scientific ideas and retain their original worldviews, or retain their original worldviews and ignore the scientific…

  18. Modeling the economic costs of disasters and recovery: analysis using a dynamic computable general equilibrium model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, W.; Li, N.; Wu, J.-D.; Hao, X.-L.

    2014-04-01

    Disaster damages have negative effects on the economy, whereas reconstruction investment has positive effects. The aim of this study is to model economic causes of disasters and recovery involving the positive effects of reconstruction activities. Computable general equilibrium (CGE) model is a promising approach because it can incorporate these two kinds of shocks into a unified framework and furthermore avoid the double-counting problem. In order to factor both shocks into the CGE model, direct loss is set as the amount of capital stock reduced on the supply side of the economy; a portion of investments restores the capital stock in an existing period; an investment-driven dynamic model is formulated according to available reconstruction data, and the rest of a given country's saving is set as an endogenous variable to balance the fixed investment. The 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake is selected as a case study to illustrate the model, and three scenarios are constructed: S0 (no disaster occurs), S1 (disaster occurs with reconstruction investment) and S2 (disaster occurs without reconstruction investment). S0 is taken as business as usual, and the differences between S1 and S0 and that between S2 and S0 can be interpreted as economic losses including reconstruction and excluding reconstruction, respectively. The study showed that output from S1 is found to be closer to real data than that from S2. Economic loss under S2 is roughly 1.5 times that under S1. The gap in the economic aggregate between S1 and S0 is reduced to 3% at the end of government-led reconstruction activity, a level that should take another four years to achieve under S2.

  19. American Academy of Forensic Sciences

    MedlinePlus

    ... Scientific Meeting — New Orleans, Louisiana 2017 Discover More Forensic Science Education Programs Accreditation Commission (FEPAC) Read More So You Want to Be a Forensic Scientist! Read More ‹ › The American Academy of Forensic ...

  20. Forensic medicine in China.

    PubMed

    Peng, Z; Pounder, D J

    1998-12-01

    Although China has a long history of forensic medicine, with the first standard text published in 1247, modern practices appeared only in the 1930s under Professor Lin Ji. After the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, there was a period of rapid development, which was later interrupted by the Cultural Revolution of 1966-1976. Today, China has about 10,000 experts in forensic medicine organized within the separate agencies of police, prosecutor's offices, courts, universities, and the Justice Ministry. Eight medical colleges, the Institute of Forensic Sciences of the Ministry of Justice in Shanghai which publishes the Journal of Forensic Medicine, and the Forensic Medicine Association of China which publishes the Chinese Journal of Forensic Medicine are key organizations. PMID:9885933

  1. An Empirical Analysis of Forensics Skills Employed by Participants in Bicentennial Youth Debates.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Semlak, William; Shandrow, Kathy J.

    Poor delivery, artificial analysis, and unrealistic organization are all pointed to by critics of competitive tournament debate. The purpose of this study was to determine the relative ability of students with debate and nondebate training with regard to analysis, organization, and speaking skills. Ninety-four participants in the Bicentennial…

  2. (210)Po poisoning as possible cause of death: forensic investigations and toxicological analysis of the remains of Yasser Arafat.

    PubMed

    Froidevaux, Pascal; Bochud, François; Baechler, Sébastien; Castella, Vincent; Augsburger, Marc; Bailat, Claude; Michaud, Katarzyna; Straub, Marietta; Pecchia, Marco; Jenk, Theo M; Uldin, Tanya; Mangin, Patrice

    2016-02-01

    The late president of the Palestinian Authority, Yasser Arafat, died in November 2004 in Percy Hospital, one month after having experienced a sudden onset of symptoms that included severe nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain and which were followed by multiple organ failure. In spite of numerous investigations performed in France, the pathophysiological mechanisms at the origin of the symptoms could not be identified. In 2011, we found abnormal levels of polonium-210 ((210)Po) in some of Arafat's belongings that were worn during his final hospital stay and which were stained with biological fluids. This finding led to the exhumation of Arafat's remains in 2012. Significantly higher (up to 20 times) activities of (210)Po and lead-210 ((210)Pb) were found in the ribs, iliac crest and sternum specimens compared to reference samples from the literature (p-value <1%). In all specimens from the tomb, (210)Po activity was supported by a similar activity of (210)Pb. Biokinetic calculations demonstrated that a (210)Pb impurity, as identified in a commercial source of 3MBq of (210)Po, may be responsible for the activities measured in Arafat's belongings and remains 8 years after his death. The absence of myelosuppression and hair loss in Mr Arafat's case compared to Mr Litvinenko's, the only known case of malicious poisoning with (210)Po, could be explained by differences in the time delivery-scheme of intake. In conclusion, statistical Bayesian analysis combining all the evidence gathered in our forensic expert report moderately supports the proposition that Mr Arafat was poisoned by (210)Po. PMID:26707208

  3. Study Of The Risks Arising From Natural Disasters And Hazards On Urban And Intercity Motorways By Using Failure Mode Effect Analysis (FMEA) Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DELİCE, Yavuz

    2015-04-01

    Highways, Located in the city and intercity locations are generally prone to many kind of natural disaster risks. Natural hazards and disasters that may occur firstly from highway project making to construction and operation stages and later during the implementation of highway maintenance and repair stages have to be taken into consideration. And assessment of risks that may occur against adverse situations is very important in terms of project design, construction, operation maintenance and repair costs. Making hazard and natural disaster risk analysis is largely depending on the definition of the likelihood of the probable hazards on the highways. However, assets at risk , and the impacts of the events must be examined and to be rated in their own. With the realization of these activities, intended improvements against natural hazards and disasters will be made with the utilization of Failure Mode Effects Analysis (FMEA) method and their effects will be analyzed with further works. FMEA, is a useful method to identify the failure mode and effects depending on the type of failure rate effects priorities and finding the most optimum economic and effective solution. Although relevant measures being taken for the identified risks by this analysis method , it may also provide some information for some public institutions about the nature of these risks when required. Thus, the necessary measures will have been taken in advance in the city and intercity highways. Many hazards and natural disasters are taken into account in risk assessments. The most important of these dangers can be listed as follows; • Natural disasters 1. Meteorological based natural disasters (floods, severe storms, tropical storms, winter storms, avalanches, etc.). 2. Geological based natural disasters (earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, subsidence, sinkholes, etc) • Human originated disasters 1. Transport accidents (traffic accidents), originating from the road surface defects (icing, signaling caused malfunctions and risks), fire or explosion etc.- In this study, with FMEA method, risk analysis of the urban and intercity motorways against natural disasters and hazards have been performed and found solutions were brought against these risks. Keywords: Failure Modes Effects Analysis (FMEA), Pareto Analyses (PA), Highways, Risk Management.

  4. Understanding Impact and Implications of Data Standards on Post Disaster Risk Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevenson, Robert

    2010-05-01

    Although the physical and humanitarian effects of a natural catastrophe are often bound to the locality of the event the financial impacts can have global effects. This is particularly prominent in the re/insurance community, where through a number of market mechanisms and re/insurance structures financial loss is mitigated amongst many companies across the globe. The level of risk a company wishes to retain, given an event, represents the level of risk decision makers deem acceptable. Catastrophe risk modelling tools aid the estimation of risk retention and transfer mechanisms, and increasingly the level of capital required to withstand a catastrophic event. These tools rely on appropriate representations hazard, exposure, vulnerability and insurance conditions that reflect the reality of risk. In addition, accurate estimation of loss potential in the aftermath of a catastrophic event equally relies on the data available to assess the scale of damages experienced and to provide views on the likely scale of loss. A coherent and focussed data and modelling strategy is required to ensure that the risk assessment made is as accurate as possible. A fundamental factor in determining the accuracy of catastrophe output, is the quality of data entered. It is of vital importance, therefore, to have an understanding of both the data used as well as the standard of this data, which will so powerfully impact upon the decision making process. This is perhaps best illustrated through the study of historical events, such as Hurricane Katrina and Ike. The extent of data variance in post disaster analysis clearly demonstrates issues of data discrepancies, vintage, resolution and uncertainty propagation, and reflects on the standard of the original data utilized for modelling purposes and decision making. Using experience gained from recent events, this paper will explore current data variabilities, and the impacts on effective loss estimation, both in relation to reinsurance structuring, but also in terms of effective post-event analysis. It will provide views on how data is currently applied in this context, and will make suggestions as to the most important areas for future data improvements.

  5. Forensic odontology: an overview.

    PubMed

    Spencer, Duane E

    2014-06-01

    This article is an overview of the field of forensic odontology, highlighting historical cases, with an emphasis on California cases, and briefly discussing some of the current techniques and issues in the field. As with all fields of dentistry, forensic odontology is adapting to new methodologies, changes in techniques, research findings and legal issues. Today's dentist who works in the forensic arena must face and understand these changes and advancements. PMID:25080766

  6. Validity of Rorschach Inkblot Scores for Discriminating Psychopaths from Nonpsychopaths in Forensic Populations: A Meta-Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wood, James M.; Lilienfeld, Scott O.; Nezworski, M. Teresa; Garb, Howard N.; Allen, Keli Holloway; Wildermuth, Jessica L.

    2010-01-01

    Gacono and Meloy (2009) have concluded that the Rorschach Inkblot Test is a sensitive instrument with which to discriminate psychopaths from nonpsychopaths. We examined the association of psychopathy with 37 Rorschach variables in a meta-analytic review of 173 validity coefficients derived from 22 studies comprising 780 forensic participants. All…

  7. Trace elemental analysis of glass and paint samples of forensic interest by ICP-MS using laser ablation solid sample introduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Almirall, Jose R.; Trejos, Tatiana; Hobbs, Andria; Furton, Kenneth G.

    2003-09-01

    The importance of small amounts of glass and paint evidence as a means to associate a crime event to a suspect or a suspect to another individual has been demonstrated in many cases. Glass is a fragile material that is often found at the scenes of crimes such as burglaries, hit-and-run accidents and violent crime offenses. Previous work has demonstrated the utility of elemental analysis by solution ICP-MS of small amounts of glass for the comparison between a fragment found at a crime scene to a possible source of the glass. The multi-element capability and the sensitivity of ICP-MS combined with the simplified sample introduction of laser ablation prior to ion detection provides for an excellent and relatively non-destructive technique for elemental analysis of glass fragments. The direct solid sample introduction technique of laser ablation (LA) is reported as an alternative to the solution method. Direct solid sampling provides several advantages over solution methods and shows great potential for a number of solid sample analyses in forensic science. The advantages of laser ablation include the simplification of sample preparation, thereby reducing the time and complexity of the analysis, the elimination of handling acid dissolution reagents such as HF and the reduction of sources of interferences in the ionization plasma. Direct sampling also provides for essentially "non-destructive" sampling due to the removal of very small amounts of sample needed for analysis. The discrimination potential of LA-ICP-MS is compared with previously reported solution ICP-MS methods using external calibration with internal standardization and a newly reported solution isotope dilution (ID) method. A total of ninety-one different glass samples were used for the comparison study using the techniques mentioned. One set consisted of forty-five headlamps taken from a variety of automobiles representing a range of twenty years of manufacturing dates. A second set consisted of forty-six automotive glasses (side windows and windshields) representing casework glass from different vehicle manufacturers over several years was also characterized by RI and elemental composition analysis. The solution sample introduction techniques (external calibration and isotope dilution) provide for excellent sensitivity and precision but have the disadvantages of destroying the sample and also involve complex sample preparation. The laser ablation method was simpler, faster and produced comparable discrimination to the EC-ICP-MS and ID-ICP-MS. LA-ICP-MS can provide for an excellent alternative to solution analysis of glass in forensic casework samples. Paints and coatings are frequently encountered as trace evidence samples submitted to forensic science laboratories. A LA-ICP-MS method has been developed to complement the commonly used techniques in forensic laboratories in order to better characterize these samples for forensic purposes. Time-resolved plots of each sample can be compared to associate samples to each other or to discriminate between samples. Additionally, the concentration of lead and the ratios of other elements have been determined in various automotive paints by the reported method. A sample set of eighteen (18) survey automotive paint samples have been analyzed with the developed method in order to determine the utility of LA-ICP-MS and to compare the method to the more commonly used scanning electron microscopy (SEM) method for elemental characterization of paint layers in forensic casework.

  8. Forensic DNA Analysis of Wheat Flour as Commonly Used in White Powder Cases.

    PubMed

    Kikkawa, Hitomi S; Tahara, Makoto; Sugita, Ritsuko

    2015-09-01

    In the wake of terrorist attacks using anthrax and ricin, white powder is often encountered in cases of malicious mischief and terrorist threats. Wheat flour is a common white powder encountered in such criminal investigations. We used DNA analysis to investigate wheat flour samples for identification and discrimination as trace evidence. Species identification of commercially available wheat flour was carried out by sequencing a partial region of the ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase large subunit gene (rbcL). Samples were discriminated using short tandem repeat (STR) analysis. The rbcL sequences of all wheat flour samples were identical and showed a high level of similarity to known wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) sequences. Furthermore, flours had characteristic patterns in STR analyses, with specific cultivars showing distinctive patterns. These results suggested that the identification of wheat flour species is possible using rbcL sequencing, and that STR analysis is useful for discriminating between samples. PMID:26174661

  9. Changing disaster relief regimes in China: an analysis using four famines between 1876 and 1962.

    PubMed

    Fuller, Pierre

    2015-10-01

    Once afflicted by frequent episodes of famine, China--particularly the Chinese state--is growing in importance as a player in the overseas aid and development sector. This paper examines four famines in modern China-defined as the period since the First Opium War of 1839-42-to shed light on the changing nature of state involvement in disaster relief in the country, while also demonstrating the breadth and diversity of relief agency in the past. It makes the case that traditional disaster relief principles and methods were active well into the twentieth century, and that the statist model of today's People's Republic is not an essential characteristic of Chinese humanitarian organisation. Rather, the extent to which the Chinese state will continue to assume a dominant role in the country's re-emerging civic and charity sector is, as in earlier times, a function of the political developments and struggles that lie ahead. PMID:26395106

  10. Forensic Analysis of Canine DNA Samples in the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carson, Tobin M.; Bradley, Sharonda Q.; Fekete, Brenda L.; Millard, Julie T.; LaRiviere, Frederick J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent advances in canine genomics have allowed the development of highly distinguishing methods of analysis for both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. We describe a laboratory exercise suitable for an undergraduate biochemistry course in which the polymerase chain reaction is used to amplify hypervariable regions of DNA from dog hair and saliva…

  11. Chemical derivatization for forensic drug analysis by GC- and LC-MS.

    PubMed

    Lin, D L; Wang, S M; Wu, C H; Chen, B G; Liu, R H

    2016-01-01

    Utilizing chemical derivatization (CD) to improve gas chromatographic (GC) and GC-mass spectrometric (MS) analysis of drugs has been abundantly studied and widely practiced, while in liquid chromatography (LC) and LC-MS, application of CD approaches is still at an early stage. Silylation, acylation, and alkylation are common CD reactions, long adopted by GC and GC-MS (including GC-MS/MS) methodologies, to improve analytes' stability and/or to optimize their extraction/separation and detection efficiencies. Highly polar and nonvolatile analytes are not amenable to GC-MS analysis without the CD step; however, CD can improve LC-MS analysis of highly polar analytes, especially those with low molecular weights. Many CD reagents developed for GC and GC-MS applications are also effective in LC-MS. Other CD reagents are developed for LC-MS to enhance analytes' performance under electrospray and atmospheric pressure ionization sources. Certain CD reagents are designed to facilitate analytes' fragmentation (upon collision-induced dissociation) in generating intense product ions for sensitive MS/MS detection. In this review, various CD reagents, reaction types, and application examples are presented and discussed, with emphases on GC-MS and LC-MS analysis of drugs of abuse. PMID:26841721

  12. Forensic Analysis of Canine DNA Samples in the Undergraduate Biochemistry Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carson, Tobin M.; Bradley, Sharonda Q.; Fekete, Brenda L.; Millard, Julie T.; LaRiviere, Frederick J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent advances in canine genomics have allowed the development of highly distinguishing methods of analysis for both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. We describe a laboratory exercise suitable for an undergraduate biochemistry course in which the polymerase chain reaction is used to amplify hypervariable regions of DNA from dog hair and saliva

  13. THE LOSS OF MALAYSIA AIRLINES FLIGHT MH17: A FORENSIC AND HUMANITARIAN TASK.

    PubMed

    Ranson, David

    2015-06-01

    While forensic medical tasks are usually associated with supporting the criminal justice system, there are a range of forensic medical skills that can be brought to bear on addressing humanitarian activities. Disaster victim identification is a procedure that has achieved international standardisation through the work of a multinational Interpol Standing Committee. While part of a police organisation, it includes forensic pathologists, anthropologists, odontologists and molecular biologists who provide most of the specialist scientific input regarding identification that is integrated with police processes such as document examination and fingerprinting. The loss of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 represented a major activation of these procedures in an environment that had both humanitarian and forensic criminal investigation components. The information that is derived from the processes involved in disaster victim identification has a value that goes far beyond the determination of identity. It has an important humanitarian role in supporting the family and friends of the victims in their bereavement journey. PMID:26349375

  14. Forensics Investigator

    MedlinePlus

    ... specialize in areas such as DNA analysis or firearm examination, performing tests on weapons and substances like ... often are exposed to human body fluids and firearms. However, these working conditions pose little risk, if ...

  15. Regional disaster impact analysis: comparing Input-Output and Computable General Equilibrium models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koks, E. E.; Carrera, L.; Jonkeren, O.; Aerts, J. C. J. H.; Husby, T. G.; Thissen, M.; Standardi, G.; Mysiak, J.

    2015-11-01

    A large variety of models has been developed to assess the economic losses of disasters, of which the most common ones are Input-Output (IO) and Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) models. In addition, an increasing numbers of scholars has developed hybrid approaches; one that combines both or either of them in combination with non-economic methods. While both IO and CGE models are widely used, they are mainly compared on theoretical grounds. Few studies have compared disaster impacts of different model types in a systematic way and for the same geographical area, using similar input data. Such a comparison is valuable from both a scientific and policy perspective as the magnitude and the spatial distribution of the estimated losses are likely to vary with the chosen modelling approach (IO, CGE, or hybrid). Hence, regional disaster impact loss estimates resulting from a range of models facilitates better decisions and policy making. Therefore, in this study we analyze one specific case study, using three regional models: two hybrid IO models and a regionally calibrated version of a global CGE model. The case study concerns two flood scenarios in the Po-river basin in Italy. Modelling results indicate that the difference in estimated total (national) economic losses and the regional distribution of those losses may vary by up to a factor of seven between the three models, depending on the type of recovery path. Total economic impact, comprising all Italian regions, is negative in all models though.

  16. Application of photoacoustic infrared spectroscopy in the forensic analysis of artists' inorganic pigments.

    PubMed

    von Aderkas, Eleanor L; Barsan, Mirela M; Gilson, Denis F R; Butler, Ian S

    2010-12-01

    Fourier-transform photoacoustic infrared (PAIR) spectroscopy has been used in the analysis of 12 inorganic pigments commonly in use by artists today, viz., cobalt blue, ultramarine blue, Prussian blue, azurite, malachite, chromium oxide, viridian, cadmium yellow, chrome yellow, iron oxide, yellow ochre and Mars orange. The authenticity of these 12 commercial pigments was first established by recording their Raman spectra. The subsequent PAIR spectra were highly reproducible and matched well in the mid-IR region with previously published data for these pigments. A number of additional overtone and combination bands were also detected that will prove useful in the identification of the pigments in the future. The PAIR technique is a promising and reliable method for the analysis of inorganic pigments, especially since it involves much simpler preparation than is required for conventional IR measurements. PMID:20851668

  17. Application of photoacoustic infrared spectroscopy in the forensic analysis of artists' inorganic pigments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von Aderkas, Eleanor L.; Barsan, Mirela M.; Gilson, Denis F. R.; Butler, Ian S.

    2010-12-01

    Fourier-transform photoacoustic infrared (PAIR) spectroscopy has been used in the analysis of 12 inorganic pigments commonly in use by artists today, viz., cobalt blue, ultramarine blue, Prussian blue, azurite, malachite, chromium oxide, viridian, cadmium yellow, chrome yellow, iron oxide, yellow ochre and Mars orange. The authenticity of these 12 commercial pigments was first established by recording their Raman spectra. The subsequent PAIR spectra were highly reproducible and matched well in the mid-IR region with previously published data for these pigments. A number of additional overtone and combination bands were also detected that will prove useful in the identification of the pigments in the future. The PAIR technique is a promising and reliable method for the analysis of inorganic pigments, especially since it involves much simpler preparation than is required for conventional IR measurements.

  18. Analysis of nonstandard and home-made explosives and post-blast residues in forensic practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotrlý, Marek; Turková, Ivana

    2014-05-01

    Nonstandard and home-made explosives may constitute a considerable threat and as well as a potential material for terrorist activities. Mobile analytical devices, particularly Raman, or also FTIR spectrometers are used for the initial detection. Various sorts of phlegmatizers (moderants) to decrease sensitivity of explosives were tested, some kinds of low viscosity lubricants yielded very good results. If the character of the substance allows it, phlegmatized samples are taken in the amount of approx.0.3g for a laboratory analysis. Various separation methods and methods of concentrations of samples from post-blast scenes were tested. A wide range of methods is used for the laboratory analysis. XRD techniques capable of a direct phase identification of the crystalline substance, namely in mixtures, have highly proved themselves in practice for inorganic and organic phases. SEM-EDS/WDS methods are standardly employed for the inorganic phase. In analysing post-blast residues, there are very important techniques allowing analysis at the level of separate particles, not the overall composition in a mixed sample.

  19. Forensic ancestry analysis with two capillary electrophoresis ancestry informative marker (AIM) panels: Results of a collaborative EDNAP exercise.

    PubMed

    Santos, C; Fondevila, M; Ballard, D; Banemann, R; Bento, A M; Børsting, C; Branicki, W; Brisighelli, F; Burrington, M; Capal, T; Chaitanya, L; Daniel, R; Decroyer, V; England, R; Gettings, K B; Gross, T E; Haas, C; Harteveld, J; Hoff-Olsen, P; Hoffmann, A; Kayser, M; Kohler, P; Linacre, A; Mayr-Eduardoff, M; McGovern, C; Morling, N; O'Donnell, G; Parson, W; Pascali, V L; Porto, M J; Roseth, A; Schneider, P M; Sijen, T; Stenzl, V; Court, D Syndercombe; Templeton, J E; Turanska, M; Vallone, P M; van Oorschot, R A H; Zatkalikova, L; Carracedo, Á; Phillips, C

    2015-11-01

    There is increasing interest in forensic ancestry tests, which are part of a growing number of DNA analyses that can enhance routine profiling by obtaining additional genetic information about unidentified DNA donors. Nearly all ancestry tests use single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), but these currently rely on SNaPshot single base extension chemistry that can fail to detect mixed DNA. Insertion-deletion polymorphism (Indel) tests have been developed using dye-labeled primers that allow direct capillary electrophoresis detection of PCR products (PCR-to-CE). PCR-to-CE maintains the direct relationship between input DNA and signal strength as each marker is detected with a single dye, so mixed DNA is more reliably detected. We report the results of a collaborative inter-laboratory exercise of 19 participants (15 from the EDNAP European DNA Profiling group) that assessed a 34-plex SNP test using SNaPshot and a 46-plex Indel test using PCR-to-CE. Laboratories were asked to type five samples with different ancestries and detect an additional mixed DNA sample. Statistical inference of ancestry was made by participants using the Snipper online Bayes analysis portal plus an optional PCA module that analyzes the genotype data alongside calculation of Bayes likelihood ratios. Exercise results indicated consistent genotyping performance from both tests, reaching a particularly high level of reliability for the Indel test. SNP genotyping gave 93.5% concordance (compared to the organizing laboratory's data) that rose to 97.3% excluding one laboratory with a large number of miscalled genotypes. Indel genotyping gave a higher concordance rate of 99.8% and a reduced no-call rate compared to SNP analysis. All participants detected the mixture from their Indel peak height data and successfully assigned the correct ancestry to the other samples using Snipper, with the exception of one laboratory with SNP miscalls that incorrectly assigned ancestry of two samples and did not obtain informative likelihood ratios for a third. Therefore, successful ancestry assignments were achieved by participants in 92 of 95 Snipper analyses. This exercise demonstrates that ancestry inference tests based on binary marker sets can be readily adopted by laboratories that already have well-established CE regimes in place. The Indel test proved to be easy to use and allowed all exercise participants to detect the DNA mixture as well as achieving complete and concordant profiles in nearly all cases. Lastly, two participants successfully ran parallel next-generation sequencing analyses (each using different systems) and achieved high levels of genotyping concordance using the exercise PCR primer mixes unmodified. PMID:26122263

  20. Analysis of organophosphorus pesticides in whole blood by GC-MS-μECD with forensic purposes.

    PubMed

    Valente, Nuno I P; Tarelho, Sónia; Castro, André L; Silvestre, Armando; Teixeira, Helena M

    2015-07-01

    In the present work, two multi-residue methods for the determination of ten organophosphorus pesticides (OPs), namely chlorfenvinphos, chlorpyrifos, diazinon, dimethoate, fenthion, malathion, parathion, phosalone, pirimiphos-methyl and quinalphos, in post-mortem whole blood samples are presented. The adopted procedure uses GC-MS for screening and quantitation, and GC-μECD (electron capture detector) for compound confirmation. Three different Solid Phase Extraction (SPE) procedures for OPs with Oasis(®) hydrophilic lipophilic balanced (HLB) and Sep-Pak(®) C18 cartridges were tested, and followed by GC-μECD and GC-MS analysis. The Sep-Pak(®) C18 cartridges extraction procedure was selected since it generated analytical signals 5 times higher than those obtained with the two different Oasis(®) HLB cartridges extraction procedures. The method has shown to be selective for the isolation of selected OPs as well as to the chosen internal standard (ethion) in postmortem blood samples. Calibration curves between 50 and 5000 ng/mL were prepared using weighted linear regression models (1/x(2)). It was not possible to establish a working range for fenthion by GC-μECD due to the lower sensitivity of the detector to this compound, whereas for pirimiphos-methyl it was set between 500 and 5000 ng/mL. The limit of quantitation was established at 50 ng/mL for all analytes, except for pirimiphos-methyl by GC-μECD analysis (500 ng/mL). The average extraction efficiency ranged from 72 to 102%. The developed methods were considered robust and fit for the purpose, and had already been adopted in the laboratory routine analysis. PMID:26048493

  1. The embalming of John of Lancaster, first Duke of Bedford (1435 AD): A forensic analysis.

    PubMed

    Charlier, P; Poupon, J; Jeannel, G F; Favier, D; Popescu, S M; Augias, A; Huynh-Charlier, I; Laquay, L; Boudouma, O; Dorion-Peyronnet, C

    2016-04-01

    During the Middle Ages and Renaissance, embalming the cadaver of the elite was common practice, being a highly technical treatment mixing vegetal and mineral substances. To assess the exact kind of embalming reserved for the dead body (with the practical necessities of desiccation and good odour), we performed a full biomedical analysis of the mummified remains of John Plantagenet of Lancaster, first Duke of Bedford, regent of France for his nephew, the English King Henri VI (died 1435 AD). Here, we show, among other aspects, that the body was embalmed using substances whose origins were in apothecary and botany: mercury, myrtle, mint, frankincense, lime and, possibly, cinnamon and copper. PMID:26130751

  2. Vibrational spectroscopic analysis of an amber necklace--a forensic historical study.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Howell G M

    2010-08-01

    The vibrational infrared spectroscopic analysis of an important historical necklace of 102 beads that are purported to be made of amber indicated strong signal characteristics of cellulose nitrate with dark green-coloured areas of a naphthylamine dye. Confocal Raman depth-profiling spectroscopy using a 785-nm laser excitation, a novel application first applied here for the analysis of inclusions in amber resin, confirmed that the beads were amber resin and that residues of cellulose nitrate, camphor plasticiser and a naphthylamine dyestuff were present in surface cracks and inclusions in the bead matrix. The bead stringing material was confirmed as cellulose, which was stained green in part with the dyestuff. Comparison of the Raman spectra of the amber beads with a resin database suggested that the amber was sourced from Northern England. The scientific evidence supports the stylistic opinion that the necklace is an important example that could date from the 19th Century and that efforts had been made to coat it with a synthetic dyed polymer; this provides a rather unusual example of the chemical masking of a genuine article--a procedure that renders the article of particular interest. PMID:20376434

  3. Computer–based method of bite mark analysis: A benchmark in forensic dentistry?

    PubMed Central

    Pallam, Nandita Kottieth; Boaz, Karen; Natrajan, Srikant; Raj, Minu; Manaktala, Nidhi; Lewis, Amitha J.

    2016-01-01

    Aim: The study aimed to determine the technique with maximum accuracy in production of bite mark overlay. Materials and Methods: Thirty subjects (10 males and 20 females; all aged 20–30 years) with complete set of natural upper and lower anterior teeth were selected for this study after obtaining approval from the Institutional Ethical Committee. The upper and lower alginate impressions were taken and die stone models were obtained from each impression; overlays were produced from the biting surfaces of six upper and six lower anterior teeth by hand tracing from study casts, hand tracing from wax impressions of the bite surface, radiopaque wax impression method, and xerographic method. These were compared with the original overlay produced digitally. Results: Xerographic method was the most accurate of the four techniques, with the highest reproducibility for bite mark analysis. The methods of wax impression were better for producing overlay of tooth away from the occlusal plane. Conclusions: Various techniques are used in bite mark analysis and the choice of technique depends largely on personal preference. No single technique has been shown to be better than the others and very little research has been carried out to compare different methods. This study evaluated the accuracy of direct comparisons between suspect's models and bite marks with indirect comparisons in the form of conventional traced overlays of suspects and found the xerographic technique to be the best. PMID:27051221

  4. Reflections on Forensics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walsh, Grace

    1983-01-01

    Based on 48 years of coaching experience, a midwestern university forensic coach offers the following suggestions for others involved in forensic activities: (1) the teacher must be well prepared; (2) the school system must be supportive of the program; (3) parents and the community should be informed of school activities; (4) the media should…

  5. Forensic Science Technician

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tech Directions, 2010

    2010-01-01

    Forensic science technicians, also called crime laboratory technicians or police science technicians, help solve crimes. They examine and identify physical evidence to reconstruct a crime scene. This article discusses everything students need to know about careers for forensic science technicians--wages, responsibilities, skills needed, career

  6. Forensic Science Technician

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tech Directions, 2010

    2010-01-01

    Forensic science technicians, also called crime laboratory technicians or police science technicians, help solve crimes. They examine and identify physical evidence to reconstruct a crime scene. This article discusses everything students need to know about careers for forensic science technicians--wages, responsibilities, skills needed, career…

  7. Fixed-bin analysis for statistical evaluation of continuous distributions of allelic data from VNTR loci, for use in forensic comparisons.

    PubMed Central

    Budowle, B; Giusti, A M; Waye, J S; Baechtel, F S; Fourney, R M; Adams, D E; Presley, L A; Deadman, H A; Monson, K L

    1991-01-01

    The detection of DNA polymorphisms by RFLP analysis is having a major impact on identity testing in forensic science. At present, this approach is the best effort a forensic scientist can make to exclude an individual who has been falsely associated with an evidentiary sample found at a crime scene. When an analysis fails to exclude a suspect as a potential contributor of an evidentiary sample, a means should be provided to assess suitable weight to the putative match. Most important, the statistical analysis should not place undue weight on a genetic profile derived from an unknown sample that is attributed to an accused individual. The method must allow for limitations in conventional agarose-submarine-gel electrophoresis and Southern blotting procedure, limited sample population data, possible subpopulation differences, and potential sampling error. A conservative statistical method was developed based on arbitrarily defined fixed bins. This approach permits classification of continuous allelic data, provides for a simple and portable data-base system, and is unlikely to underestimate the frequency of occurrence of a set of alleles. This will help ensure that undue weight is not placed on a sample attributed to an accused individual. Images Figure 2 PMID:1673286

  8. Disaster risk management in prospect mining area Blitar district, East Java, using microtremor analysis and ANP (analytical network processing) approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parwatiningtyas, Diyan; Ambarsari, Erlin Windia; Marlina, Dwi; Wiratomo, Yogi

    2014-03-01

    Indonesia has a wealth of natural assets is so large to be managed and utilized, either from its own local government and local communities, especially in the mining sector. However, mining activities can change the state of the surface layer of the earth that have a high impact disaster risk. This could threaten the safety and disrupt human life, environmental damage, loss of property, and the psychological impact, sulking to the rule of law no 24 of 2007. That's why we strive to manage and minimize the risk of mine disasters in the region, how to use the method of calculation of Amplification Factor (AF) from the analysis based microtremor sulking Kanai and Nakamura, and decision systems were tested by analysis of ANP. Based on the amplification factor and Analytical Network Processing (ANP) obtained, some points showed instability in the surface layer of a mining area include the site of the TP-7, TP-8, TP-9, TP-10, (Birowo2). If in terms of structure, location indicated unstable due to have a sloping surface layer, resulting in the occurrence of landslides and earthquake risk is high. In the meantime, other areas of the mine site can be said to be a stable area.

  9. Determinants of the lethality of climate-related disasters in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM): a cross-country analysis.

    PubMed

    Andrewin, Aisha N; Rodriguez-Llanes, Jose M; Guha-Sapir, Debarati

    2015-01-01

    Floods and storms are climate-related hazards posing high mortality risk to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations. However risk factors for their lethality remain untested. We conducted an ecological study investigating risk factors for flood and storm lethality in CARICOM nations for the period 1980-2012. Lethality--deaths versus no deaths per disaster event- was the outcome. We examined biophysical and social vulnerability proxies and a decadal effect as predictors. We developed our regression model via multivariate analysis using a generalized logistic regression model with quasi-binomial distribution; removal of multi-collinear variables and backward elimination. Robustness was checked through subset analysis. We found significant positive associations between lethality, percentage of total land dedicated to agriculture (odds ratio [OR] 1.032; 95% CI: 1.013-1.053) and percentage urban population (OR 1.029, 95% CI 1.003-1.057). Deaths were more likely in the 2000-2012 period versus 1980-1989 (OR 3.708, 95% CI 1.615-8.737). Robustness checks revealed similar coefficients and directions of association. Population health in CARICOM nations is being increasingly impacted by climate-related disasters connected to increasing urbanization and land use patterns. Our findings support the evidence base for setting sustainable development goals (SDG). PMID:26153115

  10. Determinants of the lethality of climate-related disasters in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM): a cross-country analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrewin, Aisha N.; Rodriguez-Llanes, Jose M.; Guha-Sapir, Debarati

    2015-07-01

    Floods and storms are climate-related hazards posing high mortality risk to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations. However risk factors for their lethality remain untested. We conducted an ecological study investigating risk factors for flood and storm lethality in CARICOM nations for the period 1980-2012. Lethality - deaths versus no deaths per disaster event- was the outcome. We examined biophysical and social vulnerability proxies and a decadal effect as predictors. We developed our regression model via multivariate analysis using a generalized logistic regression model with quasi-binomial distribution; removal of multi-collinear variables and backward elimination. Robustness was checked through subset analysis. We found significant positive associations between lethality, percentage of total land dedicated to agriculture (odds ratio [OR] 1.032; 95% CI: 1.013-1.053) and percentage urban population (OR 1.029, 95% CI 1.003-1.057). Deaths were more likely in the 2000-2012 period versus 1980-1989 (OR 3.708, 95% CI 1.615-8.737). Robustness checks revealed similar coefficients and directions of association. Population health in CARICOM nations is being increasingly impacted by climate-related disasters connected to increasing urbanization and land use patterns. Our findings support the evidence base for setting sustainable development goals (SDG).

  11. Determinants of the lethality of climate-related disasters in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM): a cross-country analysis

    PubMed Central

    Andrewin, Aisha N.; Rodriguez-Llanes, Jose M.; Guha-Sapir, Debarati

    2015-01-01

    Floods and storms are climate-related hazards posing high mortality risk to Caribbean Community (CARICOM) nations. However risk factors for their lethality remain untested. We conducted an ecological study investigating risk factors for flood and storm lethality in CARICOM nations for the period 1980–2012. Lethality - deaths versus no deaths per disaster event- was the outcome. We examined biophysical and social vulnerability proxies and a decadal effect as predictors. We developed our regression model via multivariate analysis using a generalized logistic regression model with quasi-binomial distribution; removal of multi-collinear variables and backward elimination. Robustness was checked through subset analysis. We found significant positive associations between lethality, percentage of total land dedicated to agriculture (odds ratio [OR] 1.032; 95% CI: 1.013–1.053) and percentage urban population (OR 1.029, 95% CI 1.003–1.057). Deaths were more likely in the 2000–2012 period versus 1980–1989 (OR 3.708, 95% CI 1.615–8.737). Robustness checks revealed similar coefficients and directions of association. Population health in CARICOM nations is being increasingly impacted by climate-related disasters connected to increasing urbanization and land use patterns. Our findings support the evidence base for setting sustainable development goals (SDG). PMID:26153115

  12. Disaster risk management in prospect mining area Blitar district, East Java, using microtremor analysis and ANP (analytical network processing) approach

    SciTech Connect

    Parwatiningtyas, Diyan E-mail: erlinunindra@gmail.com; Ambarsari, Erlin Windia E-mail: erlinunindra@gmail.com; Marlina, Dwi E-mail: erlinunindra@gmail.com; Wiratomo, Yogi E-mail: erlinunindra@gmail.com

    2014-03-24

    Indonesia has a wealth of natural assets is so large to be managed and utilized, either from its own local government and local communities, especially in the mining sector. However, mining activities can change the state of the surface layer of the earth that have a high impact disaster risk. This could threaten the safety and disrupt human life, environmental damage, loss of property, and the psychological impact, sulking to the rule of law no 24 of 2007. That's why we strive to manage and minimize the risk of mine disasters in the region, how to use the method of calculation of Amplification Factor (AF) from the analysis based microtremor sulking Kanai and Nakamura, and decision systems were tested by analysis of ANP. Based on the amplification factor and Analytical Network Processing (ANP) obtained, some points showed instability in the surface layer of a mining area include the site of the TP-7, TP-8, TP-9, TP-10, (Birowo2). If in terms of structure, location indicated unstable due to have a sloping surface layer, resulting in the occurrence of landslides and earthquake risk is high. In the meantime, other areas of the mine site can be said to be a stable area.

  13. Variability and similarity of gait as evaluated by joint angles: implications for forensic gait analysis.

    PubMed

    Yang, Sylvia X M; Larsen, Peter K; Alkjr, Tine; Simonsen, Erik B; Lynnerup, Niels

    2014-03-01

    Closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage is used in criminal investigations to compare perpetrators with suspects. Usually, incomplete gait cycles are collected, making evidential gait analysis challenging. This study aimed to analyze the discriminatory power of joint angles throughout a gait cycle. Six sets from 12 men were collected. For each man, a variability range VR (mean 1SD) of a specific joint angle at a specific time point (a gait cycle was 100 time points) was calculated. In turn, each individual was compared with the 11 others, and whenever 1 of these 11 had a value within this individuals VR, it counted as positive. By adding the positives throughout the gait cycle, we created simple bar graphs; tall bars indicated a small discriminatory power, short bars indicated a larger one. The highest discriminatory power was at time points 6080 in the gait cycle. We show how our data can assess gait data from an actual case. PMID:24745080

  14. Ultrafast amplification of DNA on plastic microdevices for forensic short tandem repeat analysis.

    PubMed

    Lounsbury, Jenny A; Landers, James P

    2013-07-01

    The majority of microfluidic devices used as a platform for low-cost, rapid DNA analysis are glass devices; however, microchip fabrication in glass is costly and laborious, enhancing the interest in polymeric substrates, such as poly (methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), as an inexpensive alternative. Here, we report amplification in PMMA polymerase chain reaction (PCR) microchips providing full short tandem repeat profiles (16 of 16 loci) in 30-40 min, with peak height ratios and stutter percentages that meet literature threshold requirements. In addition, partial profiles (15 of 16 loci) were generated using an ultrafast PCR method in 17.1 min, representing a ~10-fold reduction in reaction time as compared to current amplification methods. Finally, a multichamber device was demonstrated to simultaneously amplify one positive, one negative, and five individual samples in 39 min. Although there were instances of loci dropout, this device represents a first step toward a microfluidic system capable of amplifying more than one sample simultaneously. PMID:23692541

  15. Multiple Forensic Interviews During Investigations of Child Sexual Abuse: A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Block, Stephanie D.; Foster, E. Michael; Pierce, Matthew W.; Berkoff, Molly C.; Runyan, Desmond K.

    2013-01-01

    In cases of suspected child sexual abuse (CSA) some professionals routinely recommend multiple interviews by the same interviewer because any additional details provided might improve decision-making and increase perpetrator convictions. We analyzed alternative policies about child interviewing to estimate the probability that a policy of all children receiving multiple interviews will increase criminal convictions and better protect children. Using decision analysis, we prepared a decision tree reflecting the structure through which a case of possible CSA passes through the health care, welfare, and legal systems with an estimated probability of conviction of the offender. We reviewed the CSA disclosure, criminal justice, and child welfare literature to obtain estimates for the median and range of rates for the steps of disclosure, substantiation, criminal charges, and conviction. Using the R statistical package, our decision analysis model was populated using literature-based estimates. Once the model was populated, we simulated the experiences of 1,000 cases at 250 sets of plausible parameter values representing different hypothetical communities. Multiple interviews increase the likelihood that an offender will be convicted by 6.1% in the average community. Simulations indicate that a policy in which all children seen for a CSA medical evaluation receive multiple interviews would cost an additional $100,000 for each additional conviction. We estimate that approximately 17 additional children would need to be interviewed on more than one occasion to yield one additional conviction. A policy of multiple interviews has implications for the children, for the costs of care, for protecting other children, and for the risk of false prosecution. PMID:24244100

  16. Forensic dentistry in human identification: A review of the literature.

    PubMed

    Ata-Ali, Javier; Ata-Ali, Fadi

    2014-04-01

    An update is provided of the literature on the role of odontology in human identification, based on a PubMed-Medline search of the last 5 years and using the terms: "forensic dentistry" (n = 464 articles), "forensic odontology" (n = 141 articles) and "forensic dentistry identification" (n = 169 articles). Apart from these initial 774 articles, others considered to be important and which were generated by a manual search and cited as references in review articles were also included. Forensic dentistry requires interdisciplinary knowledge, since the data obtained from the oral cavity can contribute to identify an individual or provide information needed in a legal process. Furthermore, the data obtained from the oral cavity can narrow the search range of an individual and play a key role in the victim identification process following mass disasters or catastrophes. This literature search covering the last 5 years describes the novelties referred to buccodental studies in comparative identification, buccodental evaluation in reconstructive identification, human bites as a method for identifying the aggressor, and the role of DNA in dental identification. The oral cavity is a rich and noninvasive source of DNA, and can be used to solve problems of a social, economic or legal nature. Key words:Forensic identification, DNA, forensic dentistry, rugoscopy, cheiloscopy, saliva. PMID:24790717

  17. Forensic dentistry in human identification: A review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    Ata-Ali, Fadi

    2014-01-01

    An update is provided of the literature on the role of odontology in human identification, based on a PubMed-Medline search of the last 5 years and using the terms: “forensic dentistry” (n = 464 articles), “forensic odontology” (n = 141 articles) and “forensic dentistry identification” (n = 169 articles). Apart from these initial 774 articles, others considered to be important and which were generated by a manual search and cited as references in review articles were also included. Forensic dentistry requires interdisciplinary knowledge, since the data obtained from the oral cavity can contribute to identify an individual or provide information needed in a legal process. Furthermore, the data obtained from the oral cavity can narrow the search range of an individual and play a key role in the victim identification process following mass disasters or catastrophes. This literature search covering the last 5 years describes the novelties referred to buccodental studies in comparative identification, buccodental evaluation in reconstructive identification, human bites as a method for identifying the aggressor, and the role of DNA in dental identification. The oral cavity is a rich and noninvasive source of DNA, and can be used to solve problems of a social, economic or legal nature. Key words:Forensic identification, DNA, forensic dentistry, rugoscopy, cheiloscopy, saliva. PMID:24790717

  18. Forensic psychiatry in Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Hassan, Tariq; Nizami, Asad Tamizuddin; Hirji, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    This article reviews existing forensic psychiatric services in Pakistan highlighting the role played by the judicial and the medical fraternity in managing the legal and forensic issues of the population of patients with mental illnesses. Until 2001, all legal and forensic issues were dealt with the mental health legislation of 1912, the Lunacy Act of 1912. This was inherited from the British rulers in the Sub-Continent at the time. The Mental Health Ordinance of 2001 could not sustain following the 18th constitutional amendment in 2010, whereby psychiatric healthcare was devolved to the provinces from the previous federal authority. The article also highlights the difficulties and the barriers in implementation of the forensic psychiatric services in Pakistan at various levels within the healthcare system. This article also delves into the current framework of training in forensic psychiatry for postgraduates as well as the assessments and management schedules for the mentally ill offenders at tertiary care institutions in Pakistan. PMID:26024984

  19. Nuclear Forensic Materials and Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hutcheon, I. D.; Grant, P. M.; Moody, K. J.

    A short history and treatment of the various aspects of nuclear forensic analysis is followed by a discussion of the most common chemical procedures, including applications of tracers, radioisotopic generators, and sample chronometry. Analytic methodology discussed includes sample preparation, radiation detection, various forms of microscopy, and mass-spectrometric techniques. The chapter concludes with methods for the production and treatment of special nuclear materials and with a description of several actual case studies conducted at Livermore.

  20. Qualitative and quantitative assessment of single fingerprints in forensic DNA analysis.

    PubMed

    Ostojic, Lana; Klempner, Stacey A; Patel, Rosni A; Mitchell, Adele A; Axler-DiPerte, Grace L; Wurmbach, Elisa

    2014-11-01

    Fingerprints and touched items are important sources of DNA for STR profiling, since this evidence can be recovered in a wide variety of criminal offenses. However, there are some fundamental difficulties in working with these samples, including variability in quantity and quality of extracted DNA. In this study, we collected and analyzed over 700 fingerprints. We compared a commercially available extraction protocol (Zygem) to two methods developed in our laboratory, a simple one-tube protocol and a high sensitivity protocol (HighSens) that includes additional steps to concentrate and purify the DNA. The amplification protocols tested were AmpFLSTR® Identifiler® using either 28 or 31 amplification cycles, and Identifiler® Plus using 32 amplification cycles. We found that the HighSens and Zygem extraction methods were significantly better in their DNA yields than the one-tube method. Identifiler® Plus increased the quality of the STR profiles for the one-tube extraction significantly. However, this effect could not be verified for the other extraction methods. Furthermore, microscopic analysis of single fingerprints revealed that some individuals tended to shed more material than others onto glass slides. However, a dense deposition of skin flakes did not strongly correlate with a high quality STR profile. PMID:25098234

  1. Forensic analysis of mesembrine alkaloids in Sceletium tortuosum by nonaqueous capillary electrophoresis mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Roscher, Jörg; Posch, Tjorben Nils; Pütz, Michael; Huhn, Carolin

    2012-06-01

    The consumption of legal and illegal drugs follows an organic trend comparable to the current trend in food consumption. The investigation of such drugs is therefore of interest to characterize the active ingredients of plants and drug preparations. A new method of nonaqueous capillary electrophoresis coupled to mass spectrometry (NACE-MS) as a powerful tool for the separation of complex alkaloid mixtures in difficult matrices is presented in this study for the analysis of samples of Sceletium tortuosum and drug products called Kanna made thereof. The method was found to be suitable for the investigation of the alkaloid composition and relative quantification of the ingredients. It proved of value to separate a large number of isobaric compounds, most probably including diastereomers, double-bond isomers, and further structurally closely related compounds. A comparison of plant samples from different vendors, self-fermented samples, and products ready for consumption was made. The high separation power obtained allowed a better description of the chemotypic differences of plant samples as well as Kanna preparations compared to other methods presented in the literature so far. Thus, the use of the NACE-MS enables a new perspective on the alkaloid profile of Sceletium species. PMID:22736358

  2. Forensic mental health professionals' perceptions of psychopathy: a prototypicality analysis of the Comprehensive Assessment of Psychopathic Personality in Sweden.

    PubMed

    Sörman, Karolina; Edens, John F; Smith, Shannon Toney; Svensson, Olof; Howner, Katarina; Kristiansson, Marianne; Fischer, Håkan

    2014-10-01

    Assessments of psychopathic traits are used on a routine basis in forensic evaluations across Westernized countries. Despite this, consensus has not yet emerged concerning what exactly are the "core" features of this construct. Moreover, relatively little is known about how practitioners in the field construe this disorder. This study explored perceptions and attitudes regarding psychopathy among individuals working in the forensic mental health system (N = 90) in Sweden. Participants provided prototype ratings of what they considered to be core psychopathy features based on the Comprehensive Assessment of Psychopathic Personality (CAPP), a model that increasingly is the focus of research in North America and Europe. The study protocol also included questions regarding (a) global perceptions and attitudes about a number of aspects of the psychopathy construct (e.g., personal experience, perceived prevalence), and (b) attitudinal scales that assessed perceived correlates of psychopathic traits across a variety of domains (e.g., violence proneness, treatment amenability) and moral judgments and attitudes concerning how psychopathic offenders should be treated within the legal system. The majority of the 33 individual CAPP items and the six CAPP scales were rated as at least moderately prototypical of psychopathy, with Dominance, Self, and Attachment domains obtaining the highest mean ratings. Participants viewed psychopaths as more likely to commit crimes than the average criminal, without being blatantly "evil" people. We believe our results help to advance our understanding of the psychopathy construct by exploring forensic professionals' perceptions of this disorder in general and in relation to the CAPP model specifically. PMID:24707908

  3. Microbial Forensics: A Scientific Assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Keim, Paul

    2003-02-17

    Microorganisms have been used as weapons in criminal acts, most recently highlighted by the terrorist attack using anthrax in the fall of 2001. Although such ''biocrimes'' are few compared with other crimes, these acts raise questions about the ability to provide forensic evidence for criminal prosecution that can be used to identify the source of the microorganisms used as a weapon and, more importantly, the perpetrator of the crime. Microbiologists traditionally investigate the sources of microorganisms in epidemiological investigations, but rarely have been asked to assist in criminal investigations. A colloquium was convened by the American Academy of Microbiology in Burlington, Vermont, on June 7-9, 2002, in which 25 interdisciplinary, expert scientists representing evolutionary microbiology, ecology, genomics, genetics, bioinformatics, forensics, chemistry, and clinical microbiology, deliberated on issues in microbial forensics. The colloquium's purpose was to consider issues relating to microbial forensics, which included a detailed identification of a microorganism used in a bioattack and analysis of such a microorganism and related materials to identify its forensically meaningful source--the perpetrators of the bioattack. The colloquium examined the application of microbial forensics to assist in resolving biocrimes with a focus on what research and education are needed to facilitate the use of microbial forensics in criminal investigations and the subsequent prosecution of biocrimes, including acts of bioterrorism. First responders must consider forensic issues, such as proper collection of samples to allow for optimal laboratory testing, along with maintaining a chain of custody that will support eventual prosecution. Because a biocrime may not be immediately apparent, a linkage must be made between routine diagnosis, epidemiological investigation, and criminal investigation. There is a need for establishing standard operating procedures and training to meet these initial challenges so as minimize disturbance of the evidence. While epidemiology and forensics are similar sciences with similar goals when applied to biocrimes, forensics has additional and more stringent requirements. Maintaining a chain of custody on evidentiary samples is one example of an extra requirement imposed on an investigation of a biocrime. Another issue is the intent in microbial forensics to identify a bioattack organism in greatest detail. If possible, forensic investigations will strive to identify the precise strain and substrain, rather than just to the species level, which might be sufficient in an epidemiological investigation. Although multiple groups have developed lists of bioterrorism target pathogens, these lists are too narrow. An expansion of microorganisms relevant to food and water threats should be considered. Computerized networks should be established to track infectious disease outbreaks in real time. These systems could alert public health and agricultural officials to the existence of a potential bioattack earlier than simply waiting for a report of a suspicious cluster of similar patients. Once a biocrime is suspected, a wide variety of methods are available to identify the microorganism used in the bioattack and to analyze features that might lead to the source of the event. A multi-pronged approach to such an investigation may be preferable, using many available methods-ranging from genomics to sequencing to physiology to analysis of substances in the sample. Microbial forensics will be most effective if there is sufficient basic scientific information concerning microbial genetics, evolution, physiology, and ecology. Strain subtyping analysis will be difficult to interpret if we do not understand some of the basic evolutionary mechanisms and population diversity of pathogens. Phenotypic features associated with evidentiary pathogens also may provide investigative leads, but full exploitation of these features can only be accomplished if we understand basic principles that control microbial physiology. Finally, the more precise and refined a microbial forensic system becomes, the more proper guidelines for handling and storage will be defined. Thus, improper dissemination or use of the pathogens will be reduced and inadvertent release will be minimized. An additional outcome of establishing these guidelines or rules is that the legitimate investigator will be protected to pursue research without unnecessary intrusion. Colloquium participants identified a variety of needs and directions in the following areas: sample handling and collection, detection, research direction, data access, QA/QC, and education. General recommendations are provided for direction or insight for the scientific community, law enforcement community, legal community, and the public.

  4. Contribution of forensic autopsy to scene reconstruction in mass fire casualties: a case of alleged arson on a floor consisting of small compartments in a building.

    PubMed

    Michiue, Tomomi; Ishikawa, Takaki; Oritani, Shigeki; Maeda, Hitoshi

    2015-01-01

    A fire is an important cause of mass disasters, involving various forensic issues. Before dawn on an early morning, 16 male visitors in their twenties to sixties were killed in a possibly incendiary fire at a 'private video parlor' consisting of small compartments in a building. The main causes of death as determined by forensic autopsy were acute carbon monoxide (CO) intoxication for all of the 15 found-dead victims, and hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy following acute CO intoxication for a victim who died in hospital. Burns were mild (<20% of body surface) in most victims, except for three victims found between the entrance and the estimated fire-outbreak site; thus, identification was completed without difficulty, supported by DNA analysis. Blood carboxyhemoglobin saturation (COHb) was higher for victims found dead in the inner area. Blood cyanide levels were sublethal, moderately correlated to COHb, but were higher in victims found around the estimated fire-outbreak site. There was no evidence of thinner, alcohol or drug abuse, or an attack of disease as a possible cause of an accidental fire outbreak. These observations contribute to evidence-based reconstruction of the fire disaster, and suggest how deaths could have been prevented by appropriate disaster measures. PMID:25311374

  5. A Forensically Sound Adversary Model for Mobile Devices

    PubMed Central

    Choo, Kim-Kwang Raymond

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we propose an adversary model to facilitate forensic investigations of mobile devices (e.g. Android, iOS and Windows smartphones) that can be readily adapted to the latest mobile device technologies. This is essential given the ongoing and rapidly changing nature of mobile device technologies. An integral principle and significant constraint upon forensic practitioners is that of forensic soundness. Our adversary model specifically considers and integrates the constraints of forensic soundness on the adversary, in our case, a forensic practitioner. One construction of the adversary model is an evidence collection and analysis methodology for Android devices. Using the methodology with six popular cloud apps, we were successful in extracting various information of forensic interest in both the external and internal storage of the mobile device. PMID:26393812

  6. Y-STRs in forensic medicine: DNA analysis in semen samples of azoospermic individuals.

    PubMed

    Soares-Vieira, Jos Arnaldo; Billerbeck, Ana Elisa Correia; Iwamura, Edna Sadayo Miazato; Zampieri, Ricardo Andrade; Gatts, Gilka Jorge Fgaro; Munoz, Daniel Romero; Hallak, Jorge; Mendonca, Berenice Bilharinho; Lucon, Antonio Marmo

    2007-05-01

    The incidence of rape has increased, especially in metropolitan areas, such as the city of So Paulo. In Brazil, studies about it have shown that the majority of this type of crime is committed by the relatives and persons close to the victim. This has made the crime more difficult to be denounced, as only 10% of the cases are reported to competent police authorities. Usually, cytological exams are carried out in sex crime investigations. The difficulty in showing the presence of spermatozoa is frequent, but it does not exclude the presence of male DNA. The absence of spermatozoa in material collected from rape victims can be due to several factors, including the fact that the agressor suffers from azoospermia. This condition can be the result of a successful vasectomy. As the majority of DNA in the ejaculation sample is from spermatozoa, there is much less DNA to be analyzed. This study presents the application of Y-STRs (DYS19, DYS389I, DYS389II, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, and DYS393) in DNA analysis of sperm samples from 105 vasectomized men. The study demonstrated a great variation in DNA concentration. DNA extraction and amplification was possible in all sperm samples even in the absence of spermatozoa. The same profile was observed, for each individual, from DNA extracted from blood, pre- and postvasectomy semen samples. The use of markers specific for Y chromosome in sex crime cases, especially in the absence of spermatozoa, is very important, mainly because in most situations there is a small quantity of the agressor's DNA in the medium and a large quantity of the victim's DNA. PMID:17456093

  7. Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    American Psychologist, 2013

    2013-01-01

    In the past 50 years forensic psychological practice has expanded dramatically. Because the practice of forensic psychology differs in important ways from more traditional practice areas (Monahan, 1980) the "Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists" were developed and published in 1991 (Committee on Ethical Guidelines for Forensic

  8. Surviving Disasters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henke, Karen Greenwood

    2008-01-01

    Schools play a unique role in communities when disaster strikes. They serve as shelter for evacuees and first responders; they are a trusted source of information; and once danger has passed, the district, as employer and community center, often serves as a foundation for recovery. Technology plays a key role in a school district's ability to

  9. [Disaster medicine].

    PubMed

    Carli, Pierre; Telionri, Caroline

    2015-01-01

    For over 30 years, the French hospital and pre-hospital medical teams are trained in disaster medicine. In fact, they are regularly confronted with the management of multiple casualties in accidents or even terrorist attacks, and more rarely to large-scale disasters. The intervention of physicians of the EMS system (SAMU-SMUR) in the field allows an original healthcare organization: in an advanced medical post, the victims are triaged according to their severity and benefit if needed of initial resuscitation. SAMU medical regulating center then organize their transport and repartition in several hospitals put on alert. To cope with a mass casualty situation, the hospital also has a specific organization, the White Plan. This plan, initiated by the director, assisted by a medico-administrative cell crisis can mobilize all the resources of the institution. Personnel are recalled and the ability of emergency units is increased. Care, less urgent, other patients are postponed. There are many plans for responding to disasters. ORSEC plans of the ministry of Interior articulate with the ORSAN plans of the ministry of Health. This complementarity allows a global mobilization of public services in disasters or exceptional medical situations. PMID:25842432

  10. Surviving Disasters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henke, Karen Greenwood

    2008-01-01

    Schools play a unique role in communities when disaster strikes. They serve as shelter for evacuees and first responders; they are a trusted source of information; and once danger has passed, the district, as employer and community center, often serves as a foundation for recovery. Technology plays a key role in a school district's ability to…

  11. Disaster Drill.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, Rebecca

    1998-01-01

    Bus disaster drills have been held all over country for years. A drill in Blairsville, Pennsylvania, taught officials important lessons: (1) keep roster of students and stops in designated area on bus, and ensure emergency workers know where location; (2) send at least three school officials to accident scene; (3) provide school officials with…

  12. What can multiwave studies teach us about disaster research: an analysis of low-income Hurricane Katrina survivors.

    PubMed

    Green, Gillian; Lowe, Sarah R; Rhodes, Jean E

    2012-06-01

    Previous research on natural disasters has been limited by a lack of predisaster data and statistical analyses that do not adequately predict change in psychological symptoms. In the current study, we addressed these limitations through analysis of 3 waves of data from a longitudinal investigation of 313 low-income, African American mothers who were exposed to Hurricane Katrina. Although postdisaster cross-sectional estimates of the impact of traumatic stress exposure and postdisaster social support on postdisaster psychological distress were somewhat inflated, the general trends persisted when controlling for predisaster data (B = 0.88 and -0.33, vs. B = 0.81 and -0.27, respectively). Hierarchical linear modeling of the 3 waves of data revealed that lower predisaster social support was associated with higher psychological distress at the time of the disaster (β = -.16), and that higher traumatic stress exposure was associated with greater increases in psychological distress after the storm (β = .86). Based on the results, we suggest that the impact of traumatic stress on psychological trajectories cannot be accounted for solely by preexisting risk, and recommend more complex research designs to further illuminate the complex, dynamic relationships between psychological distress, traumatic stress exposure, and social support. PMID:22684676

  13. Bayesian networks for evaluation of evidence from forensic entomology.

    PubMed

    Andersson, M Gunnar; Sundström, Anders; Lindström, Anders

    2013-09-01

    In the aftermath of a CBRN incident, there is an urgent need to reconstruct events in order to bring the perpetrators to court and to take preventive actions for the future. The challenge is to discriminate, based on available information, between alternative scenarios. Forensic interpretation is used to evaluate to what extent results from the forensic investigation favor the prosecutors' or the defendants' arguments, using the framework of Bayesian hypothesis testing. Recently, several new scientific disciplines have been used in a forensic context. In the AniBioThreat project, the framework was applied to veterinary forensic pathology, tracing of pathogenic microorganisms, and forensic entomology. Forensic entomology is an important tool for estimating the postmortem interval in, for example, homicide investigations as a complement to more traditional methods. In this article we demonstrate the applicability of the Bayesian framework for evaluating entomological evidence in a forensic investigation through the analysis of a hypothetical scenario involving suspect movement of carcasses from a clandestine laboratory. Probabilities of different findings under the alternative hypotheses were estimated using a combination of statistical analysis of data, expert knowledge, and simulation, and entomological findings are used to update the beliefs about the prosecutors' and defendants' hypotheses and to calculate the value of evidence. The Bayesian framework proved useful for evaluating complex hypotheses using findings from several insect species, accounting for uncertainty about development rate, temperature, and precolonization. The applicability of the forensic statistic approach to evaluating forensic results from a CBRN incident is discussed. PMID:23971824

  14. Rapid Disaster Damage Estimation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vu, T. T.

    2012-07-01

    The experiences from recent disaster events showed that detailed information derived from high-resolution satellite images could accommodate the requirements from damage analysts and disaster management practitioners. Richer information contained in such high-resolution images, however, increases the complexity of image analysis. As a result, few image analysis solutions can be practically used under time pressure in the context of post-disaster and emergency responses. To fill the gap in employment of remote sensing in disaster response, this research develops a rapid high-resolution satellite mapping solution built upon a dual-scale contextual framework to support damage estimation after a catastrophe. The target objects are building (or building blocks) and their condition. On the coarse processing level, statistical region merging deployed to group pixels into a number of coarse clusters. Based on majority rule of vegetation index, water and shadow index, it is possible to eliminate the irrelevant clusters. The remaining clusters likely consist of building structures and others. On the fine processing level details, within each considering clusters, smaller objects are formed using morphological analysis. Numerous indicators including spectral, textural and shape indices are computed to be used in a rule-based object classification. Computation time of raster-based analysis highly depends on the image size or number of processed pixels in order words. Breaking into 2 level processing helps to reduce the processed number of pixels and the redundancy of processing irrelevant information. In addition, it allows a data- and tasks- based parallel implementation. The performance is demonstrated with QuickBird images captured a disaster-affected area of Phanga, Thailand by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami are used for demonstration of the performance. The developed solution will be implemented in different platforms as well as a web processing service for operational uses.

  15. The forensic psychiatric report.

    PubMed

    Norko, Michael A; Buchanan, Mar Alec

    2015-01-01

    The construction of a written forensic report is a core component of forensic practice, demonstrating the evaluator's skill in conducting the evaluation and in communicating relevant information to the legal audience in an effective manner. Although communication skills and quality of written documentation are important in clinical psychiatry generally, they form the sine qua non of successful forensic work, which consists in telling complex stories in a coherent and compelling fashion. High quality forensic reports require careful preparation from the earliest stages of work on a case. They generally follow an expected structure, which permits the evaluator to provide all the data necessary to form a carefully reasoned opinion that addresses the legal questions posed. Formats and content of reports vary according to the type of case and the circumstances of the evaluation and so require flexibility within customary frameworks. The style and quality of writing are critical to the crafting of forensic reports. The effects on legal decision-makers of various approaches to the presentation of information in reports has not been studied empirically, but guidance from experienced forensic psychiatrists is available. There is a small body of research on quality improvement in forensic writing, and further empiric study is warranted. PMID:25603453

  16. Ethics and forensic psychiatry.

    PubMed

    Wettstein, Robert M

    2002-09-01

    This article has attempted to outline some of the important ethical issues faced by the psychiatrist in the forensic role. Much of forensic psychiatry is practiced by general psychiatrists without specific forensic training who must thereby familiarize themselves with the problem areas likely to be encountered in this work. They should also be knowledgeable about the ethics guidelines prepared by forensic psychology and forensic psychiatry organizations that are subject to frequent modification. Ethical problems often occur when psychiatrists exceed their expertise, their role as contracted, or the actual facts in the case. Psychiatric experts usually represent just a small part of most litigation, and an attitude of humility rather than grandiosity is appropriate. Expert witnesses serve as educators rather than decision makers in the case [21]. Given the complexity and uncertainty of medical decision making generally, whether in clinical or forensic medicine, forensic psychiatric opinions should be appropriately qualified by their limitations, acknowledged affirmatively rather than only on cross-examination. Expert witnesses commonly take an oath to "tell the truth, the whole truth." Forensic psychiatrists are not experts in moral matters and should not be rendering moral judgments or misusing their authority as psychiatrists to advance their own political or social ideology [19]. Testimony should be based on data and theory generally accepted in the profession, recognizing that there will always be minority views. Psychiatrists, however, should not be testifying based upon idiosyncratic views unsupported by at least a respectable minority of the profession. As in clinical psychiatry, complex or challenging forensic cases often require consultation from a knowledgeable colleague. PMID:12232975

  17. The medicolegal and forensic aspects of fires.

    PubMed

    Eckert, W G

    1981-12-01

    Fires, their consequences and their investigations, continue to provide forensic scientists, especially those involved in medicolegal investigation (the medical examiner or forensic pathologist), with constant work and variations in problems. The recent history of mass disasters involving high-rise buildings, transport accidents, and arson-related accidents in nightclubs and prisons has emphasized the necessity for corrective and preventive means to ensure safety to the occupants of any of these areas. Problems presented by fires include the determination of the cause of the fire, the identification of the victims, and the cause and manner of their deaths. The motivation of the fire setter and the settlement by the insurance company or legal means are also aspects to be considered. The imperceptible effects of the fires include many other aspects, among which loss of loved ones and family providers and loss of industrial revenue and job potential are all felt. The most frightening development of all, however, is the insidious surfacing of arson as a possible factor in many major fires. The most recent tragedies involving the Stouffer Inn fire and the Hilton International Hotel fire were both related to arsonous acts. The scope of this article is to review the subject as it affects the forensic medical practitioner directly or indirectly so that his or her investigation may be brought to completion in conjunction with other authorities involved in the case. PMID:7340512

  18. The use of the Podotrack in forensic podiatry for collection and analysis of bare footprints using the Reel method of measurement.

    PubMed

    Burrow, J Gordon

    2016-05-01

    This small-scale study examined the role that bare footprint collection and measurement processes have on the Reel method of measurement in forensic podiatry and its use in the Criminal Justice System. Previous research indicated that the Reel method was a valid and reliable measurement system for bare footprint analysis but various collection systems have been used to collect footprint data and both manual and digital measurement processes were utilized in forensic podiatry and other disciplines. This study contributes to the debate about collecting bare footprints; the techniques employed to quantify various Reel measurements and considered whether there was asymmetry between feet and footprints of the same person. An inductive, quantitative paradigm used the Podotrack gathering procedure for footprint collection and the subsequent dynamic footprints subjected to Adobe Photoshop techniques of calculating the Reel linear variables. Statistical analyses using paired-sample t tests were conducted to test hypotheses and compare data sets. Standard error of mean (SEM) showed variation between feet and the findings provide support for the Reel study and measurement method. PMID:27162020

  19. Forensic and population genetic analysis of Xinjiang Uyghur population on 21 short tandem repeat loci of 6-dye GlobalFiler™ PCR Amplification kit.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Honghua; Xia, Mingying; Qi, Lijie; Dong, Lei; Song, Shuang; Ma, Teng; Yang, Shuping; Jin, Li; Li, Liming; Li, Shilin

    2016-05-01

    Estimating the allele frequencies and forensic statistical parameters of commonly used short tandem repeat (STR) loci of the Uyghur population, which is the fifth largest group in China, provides a more precise reference database for forensic investigation. The 6-dye GlobalFiler™ Express PCR Amplification kit incorporates 21 autosomal STRs, which have been proven that could provide reliable DNA typing results and enhance the power of discrimination. Here we analyzed the GlobalFiler STR loci on 1962 unrelated individuals from Chinese Uyghur population of Xinjiang, China. No significant deviations from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium and linkage disequilibrium were detected within and between the GlobalFiler STR loci. SE33 showed the greatest power of discrimination in Uyghur population, whereas TPOX showed the lowest. The combined power of discrimination was 99.999999999999999999999998746%. No significant difference was observed between Uyghur and the other two Uyghur populations at all tested STRs, as well as Dai and Mongolian. Significant differences were only observed between Uyghur and other Chinese populations at TH01, as well as Central-South Asian at D13S317, East Asian at TH01 and VWA. The phylogenetic analysis showed that Uyghur is genetically close to Chinese populations, as well as East Asian and Central-South Asian. PMID:26809046

  20. Volcano Hazard Tracking and Disaster Risk Mitigation: A Detailed Gap Analysis from Data-Collection to User Implementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faied, D.; Sanchez, A.

    2009-04-01

    Volcano Hazard Tracking and Disaster Risk Mitigation: A Detailed Gap Analysis from Data-Collection to User Implementation Dohy Faied, Aurora Sanchez (on behalf of SSP08 VAPOR Project Team) Dohy.Faied@masters.isunet.edu While numerous global initiatives exist to address the potential hazards posed by volcanic eruption events and assess impacts from a civil security viewpoint, there does not yet exist a single, unified, international system of early warning and hazard tracking for eruptions. Numerous gaps exist in the risk reduction cycle, from data collection, to data processing, and finally dissemination of salient information to relevant parties. As part of the 2008 International Space University's Space Studies Program, a detailed gap analysis of the state of volcano disaster risk reduction was undertaken, and this paper presents the principal results. This gap analysis considered current sensor technologies, data processing algorithms, and utilization of data products by various international organizations. Recommendations for strategies to minimize or eliminate certain gaps are also provided. In the effort to address the gaps, a framework evolved at system level. This framework, known as VIDA, is a tool to develop user requirements for civil security in hazardous contexts, and a candidate system concept for a detailed design phase. VIDA also offers substantial educational potential: the framework includes a centralized clearinghouse for volcanology data which could support education at a variety of levels. Basic geophysical data, satellite maps, and raw sensor data are combined and accessible in a way that allows the relationships between these data types to be explored and used in a training environment. Such a resource naturally lends itself to research efforts in the subject but also research in operational tools, system architecture, and human/machine interaction in civil protection or emergency scenarios.

  1. Microchip-based forensic short tandem repeat genotyping.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yong Tae; Heo, Hyun Young; Oh, Shin Hye; Lee, Seung Hwan; Kim, Do Hyun; Seo, Tae Seok

    2015-08-01

    Micro total analysis system (μTAS) or lab-on-a-chip (LOC) technology has advanced over decades, and the high performance for chemical and biological analysis has been well demonstrated with advantages of low sample consumption, rapid analysis time, high-throughput screening, and portability. In particular, μTAS or LOC based genetic applications have been extensively explored, and the short tandem repeat (STR) typing on a chip has garnered attention in the forensic community due to its special use for human identification in the field of mass disaster and missing person investigation, paternity testing, and perpetrator identification. The STR typing process consists of sample collection, DNA extraction, DNA quantitation, STR loci amplification, capillary electrophoretic separation, and STR profiling. Recent progress of microtechnology shows its ability to substitute the conventional analytical tools, and furthermore demonstrates total integration of the whole STR processes on a single wafer for on-site STR typing. In this review article, we highlighted some representative results for fluorescence labeling techniques, microchip-based DNA purification, on-chip polymerase chain reaction (PCR), a capillary electrophoretic microdevice, and a fully integrated microdevice for STR typing. PMID:25963560

  2. The Case for Open Source Software in Digital Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zanero, Stefano; Huebner, Ewa

    In this introductory chapter we discuss the importance of the use of open source software (OSS), and in particular of free software (FLOSS) in computer forensics investigations including the identification, capture, preservation and analysis of digital evidence; we also discuss the importance of OSS in computer forensics

  3. [Forensic medical examination in cases of sexual abuse].

    PubMed

    Deriagin, G B

    2006-01-01

    The article presents the analysis of forensic medical expert practice in the field of sexual abuse. Drawbacks in expert examinations, official decisions on such examinations, low expertise of forensic medical personnel in sexual crime, lack of tools for genital and anal examination are analysed and methods of correction of this situation are proposed. PMID:17089603

  4. Fear and Loathing in Forensics: The View from Postmodern Suburbia.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, B. Keith

    This report attempts to construct a postmodern framework to provide for an analysis of Intercollegiate Forensics. It isolates the major theoretical constructs of postmodernism, applies them to Intercollegiate Forensics, and draws conclusions. The paper maintains that linguistic-based postmodernism consists of four theoretical areas: (1)…

  5. Country logistics performance and disaster impact.

    PubMed

    Vaillancourt, Alain; Haavisto, Ira

    2016-04-01

    The aim of this paper is to deepen the understanding of the relationship between country logistics performance and disaster impact. The relationship is analysed through correlation analysis and regression models for 117 countries for the years 2007 to 2012 with disaster impact variables from the International Disaster Database (EM-DAT) and logistics performance indicators from the World Bank. The results show a significant relationship between country logistics performance and disaster impact overall and for five out of six specific logistic performance indicators. These specific indicators were further used to explore the relationship between country logistic performance and disaster impact for three specific disaster types (epidemic, flood and storm). The findings enhance the understanding of the role of logistics in a humanitarian context with empirical evidence of the importance of country logistics performance in disaster response operations. PMID:26282578

  6. Forensic geology exhumed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez, Joseph Didier

    Forensic geology binds applied geology to the world of legal controversy and action. However, the term forensic is often misconstrued. Although even some attorneys apply it only to the marshalling of evidence in criminal cases, it has a much broader definition. One dictionary defines it as pertaining to, connected with, or used in courts of law or public discussion and debate. The American Geological Institute's Glossary of Geology defines forensic geology as the application of the Earth sciences to the law. The cited reference to Murray and Tedrow [1975], however, deals mostly if not exclusively with the gathering and use of evidence in criminal cases, despite the widespread involvement of geologists in more general legal matters. It seems appropriate to exhume geology's wider application to the law, which is encompassed by forensic geology.

  7. Analysis on key problems of mountain torrent disaster loss assessment system in Liaohe River Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Jing

    2014-01-01

    Liaohe river basin mountain torrent disaster serious, this paper tells a system of flood loss assessment which would be helpful for the decrease of the geologic disastrous loss. Firstly, it mainly analyzes four uncertainties aspects of flood loss: precision of prediction and simulation, accounting standard of asset, asset vulnerability and flood prevention ability. Secondly, EasyDHM has been selected for forecast flood, the simulation forecast time is 6h before real flood peak coming; flood inundation model is selected for flood submerged level information extracted and flood submerged map. In the end, the model of flood Lose calculation is used to calculation the loss by the extracted information from stacking social economic data and water data. The feasibility of flood loss assessment system has been proved by flood simulation in 1998, 2003 and 2005. The unified assessment criteria make the assessment result difference, but this system of flood loss assessment has some value in system integration.

  8. Development and Analysis of a Hurricane Hazard Model for Disaster Risk Assessment in Central America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pita, G. L.; Gunasekera, R.; Ishizawa, O. A.

    2014-12-01

    Hurricane and tropical storm activity in Central America has consistently caused over the past decades thousands of casualties, significant population displacement, and substantial property and infrastructure losses. As a component to estimate future potential losses, we present a new regional probabilistic hurricane hazard model for Central America. Currently, there are very few openly available hurricane hazard models for Central America. This resultant hazard model would be used in conjunction with exposure and vulnerability components as part of a World Bank project to create country disaster risk profiles that will assist to improve risk estimation and provide decision makers with better tools to quantify disaster risk. This paper describes the hazard model methodology which involves the development of a wind field model that simulates the gust speeds at terrain height at a fine resolution. The HURDAT dataset has been used in this study to create synthetic events that assess average hurricane landfall angles and their variability at each location. The hazard model also then estimates the average track angle at multiple geographical locations in order to provide a realistic range of possible hurricane paths that will be used for risk analyses in all the Central-American countries. This probabilistic hurricane hazard model is then also useful for relating synthetic wind estimates to loss and damage data to develop and calibrate existing empirical building vulnerability curves. To assess the accuracy and applicability, modeled results are evaluated against historical events, their tracks and wind fields. Deeper analyses of results are also presented with a special reference to Guatemala. The findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this paper are entirely those of the authors. They do not necessarily represent the views of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development/World Bank and its affiliated organizations, or those of the Executive Directors of the World Bank or the governments they represent.

  9. Mac OS X Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craiger, Philip; Burke, Paul

    This paper describes procedures for conducting forensic examinations of Apple Macs running Mac OS X. The target disk mode is used to create a forensic duplicate of a Mac hard drive and preview it. Procedures are discussed for recovering evidence from allocated space, unallocated space, slack space and virtual memory. Furthermore, procedures are described for recovering trace evidence from Mac OS X default email, web browser and instant messaging applications, as well as evidence pertaining to commands executed from a terminal.

  10. Atypical Forensic Dental Identifications.

    PubMed

    Cardoza, Anthony R; Wood, James D

    2015-06-01

    Forensic dental identification specialists are typically the last conventional option for postmortem identification. Forensic dental identification is most often accomplished by comparing radiographs of the decedent's teeth with the dental radiographs obtained from the dentist of the suspected victim. Unfortunately, antemortem dental radiographs are not always available. When presented with this challenge, the authors of this article have been successful in completing identifications using means other than dental radiographic comparison. PMID:26126345

  11. Professionalism in Computer Forensics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irons, Alastair D.; Konstadopoulou, Anastasia

    The paper seeks to address the need to consider issues regarding professionalism in computer forensics in order to allow the discipline to develop and to ensure the credibility of the discipline from the differing perspectives of practitioners, the criminal justice system and in the eyes of the public. There is a need to examine and develop professionalism in computer forensics in order to promote the discipline and maintain the credibility of the discipline.

  12. Transporting Forensic Psychiatric Patients.

    PubMed

    Dike, Charles C; Nicholson, Elizabeth; Young, John L

    2015-12-01

    Patients in a forensic psychiatric facility often require escorted transport to medical facilities for investigations or treatments of physical health ailments. Transporting these patients presents significant safety and custody challenges because of the nature of patients housed in forensic psychiatric facilities. A significant proportion of these patients may be transfers from the Department of Corrections (DOC) under legal mandates for psychiatric evaluation and treatment better provided in a hospital setting, and most of them will return to the DOC. Although departments of correction have protocols for escorting these potentially dangerous individuals, it is unclear whether receiving psychiatric hospitals have established procedures for maintaining the safety of others and custody of these individuals during transportation outside the hospital facility. The literature is sparse on precautions to be observed when transporting dangerous forensic psychiatric patients, including those with high escape risk. In this article, we describe one forensic inpatient facility's procedure for determining the appropriate level needed to transport these individuals outside of the forensic facility. We also describe the risk assessment procedure for determining level of transport. These are quality improvement measures resulting from a critical review of an incident of escape from the forensic facility several years ago. PMID:26668224

  13. Internet and forensic science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamakura, Reddy P.

    1997-02-01

    The Internet is a very powerful and inexpensive tool that was created for the free distribution of knowledge and information. The Internet is a learning tool, a research tool, a virtual library without borders and membership requirements, a journal with instant publication, a help desk, and a newspaper/journal with current information. Very soon, when live audio and video transmission is perfected, the Internet also will be a live classroom and everyday conference. Forensic scientists, laboratories and colleges should make use of information already available on the Internet. They also should actively participate and contribute. Very few forensic scientists and laboratories have made their presence felt by setting up their home pages/web pages. But, there is tremendous growth during the past year. Immense benefits from Internet to forensic community are discussed along with the author's personal experience. Creating on-line searchable data bases in all specialties of forensic science is an urgent need. Leading forensic journals should take a lead and create on-line searchable indexes with abstracts. On line electronic publishing, collaborative research/paper publishing or editing is easy, fast, economical and convenient through the use of the Internet. Creation of Internet repositories of unpublished papers is an idea worth looking into. Internet also can be used to give training, re-training or advanced training to students/forensic scientists.

  14. New psychoactive substances: catalysing a shift in forensic science practice?

    PubMed

    Tettey, Justice; Crean, Conor

    2015-08-01

    The analysis of substances of abuse remains one of the most matured areas in forensic science with a strong scientific basis, namely analytical chemistry. The current evolving drug markets, characterized by the global emergence of new psychoactive substances (NPS) and the need for forensic scientists to identify an unprecedented and ever-increasing number of NPS, presents a unique challenge to this discipline. This article looks at the current situation with NPS at the global level, and the challenges posed to the otherwise technically robust forensic science discipline of analysis of substances of abuse. It discusses the preparedness of forensic science to deal with the current situation and identifies the need for a shift in forensic science practice, especially one which embraces research and looks beyond normal casework in order to provide the much needed data for developing effective policy responses to the NPS problem. PMID:26101290

  15. DNA Fingerprinting in a Forensic Teaching Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wagoner, Stacy A.; Carlson, Kimberly A.

    2008-01-01

    This article presents an experiment designed to provide students, in a classroom laboratory setting, a hands-on demonstration of the steps used in DNA forensic analysis by performing DNA extraction, DNA fingerprinting, and statistical analysis of the data. This experiment demonstrates how DNA fingerprinting is performed and how long it takes. It…

  16. DNA Fingerprinting in a Forensic Teaching Experiment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wagoner, Stacy A.; Carlson, Kimberly A.

    2008-01-01

    This article presents an experiment designed to provide students, in a classroom laboratory setting, a hands-on demonstration of the steps used in DNA forensic analysis by performing DNA extraction, DNA fingerprinting, and statistical analysis of the data. This experiment demonstrates how DNA fingerprinting is performed and how long it takes. It

  17. Applying Machine Trust Models to Forensic Investigations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wojcik, Marika; Venter, Hein; Eloff, Jan; Olivier, Martin

    Digital forensics involves the identification, preservation, analysis and presentation of electronic evidence for use in legal proceedings. In the presence of contradictory evidence, forensic investigators need a means to determine which evidence can be trusted. This is particularly true in a trust model environment where computerised agents may make trust-based decisions that influence interactions within the system. This paper focuses on the analysis of evidence in trust-based environments and the determination of the degree to which evidence can be trusted. The trust model proposed in this work may be implemented in a tool for conducting trust-based forensic investigations. The model takes into account the trust environment and parameters that influence interactions in a computer network being investigated. Also, it allows for crimes to be reenacted to create more substantial evidentiary proof.

  18. Forensic terrestrial photogrammetry from a single image.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Aguilera, Diego; Gomez-Lahoz, Javier

    2009-11-01

    Forensic terrestrial photogrammetry is one of the most valuable and low-cost resources of spatial data available today. Due to the ephemeral crime scene characteristics, these photographs can often capture information that is never to be seen again. This paper presents a novelty approach for the documentation, analysis, and visualization of crime scenes for which only a single perspective image is available. The photogrammetric process consists of a few well-known steps in close-range photogrammetry: features extraction, vanishing points computation, camera self-calibration, 3D metric reconstruction, dimensional analysis, and interactive visualization. Likewise, the method incorporates a quality control of the different steps accomplished sequentially. As a result, several cases of study are presented in the experimental results section in order to test their viability. The full approach can be applied easily through the free software, sv3DVision, which has been evaluated by a number of police officers, forensic scientists, and forensic educators satisfactorily. PMID:19804526

  19. [Analysis of deaths caused by rail-vehicles in the materials collected by the Department of Forensic Medicine in Bydgoszcz in the years 1992-2002].

    PubMed

    Bloch-Bogusławska, Elzbieta; Engelgardt, Piotr; Wolska, Ewa; Paradowska, Agnieszka

    2006-01-01

    The analysis focused on cases of death following accidents involving rail-vehicles, in which autopsies were performed at the Department of Forensic Medicine in Bydgoszcz in the years 1992-2002. Sixty-five individuals died in train accidents (80%), 16 people (20%) were victims of tram accidents (20%). Males constituted 86% of the material, while females accounted for 14%. The highest number of rail-vehicle accidents was observed in 1992. The most common reason of death was multiorgan injury. In the subgroup of tram accidents, the authors noted no injuries of the highest severity, such as limb amputations, amputations or crushing of the head, or fragmentation or rupturing of the trunk. On the other hand, in railroad accidents, the percentage of the above injuries was 26%, 44% and 24.5%, respectively. The most severe injuries were noted in the group of people hit by a train while in prone position. PMID:17131763

  20. [Forensic age determination in living individuals at the Institute of Legal Medicine in Berlin (Charit): analysis of the expert reports from 2001 to 2007].

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Sven; Knfermann, Raidun; Tsokos, Michael; Schmeling, Andreas

    2009-01-01

    The analysis included the age reports provided by the Institute of Legal Medicine in Berlin (Charit) in the period from 2001 to 2007. A total of 416 age estimations were carried out, 289 in criminal and 127 in civil proceedings. 357 of the examined individuals were male, 59 were female. The vast majority of the individuals came from Vietnam. In 112 cases, there were no deviations between the indicated age and the estimated minimum age, while the actual age of the individuals was partly clearly above the estimated age. In 300 cases, there were discrepancies of up to 11 years between the indicated age and the estimated age. The study demonstrates that forensic age estimation in living individuals can make an important contribution to legal certainty. PMID:20069774

  1. Current and future directions of DNA in wildlife forensic science.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Rebecca N; Wilson-Wilde, Linzi; Linacre, Adrian

    2014-05-01

    Wildlife forensic science may not have attained the profile of human identification, yet the scale of criminal activity related to wildlife is extensive by any measure. Service delivery in the arena of wildlife forensic science is often ad hoc, unco-ordinated and unregulated, yet many of those currently dedicated to wildlife conservation and the protection of endangered species are striving to ensure that the highest standards are met. The genetic markers and software used to evaluate data in wildlife forensic science are more varied than those in human forensic identification and are rarely standardised between species. The time and resources required to characterise and validate each genetic maker is considerable and in some cases prohibitive. Further, issues are regularly encountered in the construction of allelic databases and allelic ladders; essential in human identification studies, but also applicable to wildlife criminal investigations. Accreditation and certification are essential in human identification and are currently being strived for in the forensic wildlife community. Examples are provided as to how best practice can be demonstrated in all areas of wildlife crime analysis and ensure that this field of forensic science gains and maintains the respect it deserves. This review is aimed at those conducting human identification to illustrate how research concepts in wildlife forensic science can be used in the criminal justice system, as well as describing the real importance of this type of forensic analysis. PMID:24680123

  2. [Analysis of cases of deliberate injuries with a fatal outcome during 1972-1981 from autopsy material of the Institute of Forensic Medicine at the Medical School Hospital in Martin].

    PubMed

    Hulejov, T; Osif, E

    1984-08-01

    Authors had performed statistical analysis of decenal autopsy material from Department of Forensic Medicine, Faculty Hospital, Martin, with particular focusing on deliberated fatal injuries (81 cases). The analysis of circumstances and mode of the crime with focusing on the personality and relations between the agressor and the victim was also done. The future step in the analysis will be forwarded to explain possible bioclimatological influences on committment of such kind of violences. PMID:6505756

  3. Accident analysis of large-scale technological disasters applied to an anaesthetic complication.

    PubMed

    Eagle, C J; Davies, J M; Reason, J

    1992-02-01

    The occurrence of serious accidents in complex industrial systems such as at Three Mile Island and Bhopal has prompted development of new models of causation and investigation of disasters. These analytical models have potential relevance in anaesthesia. We therefore applied one of the previously described systems to the investigation of an anaesthetic accident. The model chosen describes two kinds of failures, both of which must be sought. The first group, active failures, consists of mistakes made by practitioners in the provision of care. The second group, latent failures, represents flaws in the administrative and productive system. The model emphasizes the search for latent failures and shows that prevention of active failures alone is insufficient to avoid further accidents if latent failures persist unchanged. These key features and the utility of this model are illustrated by application to a case of aspiration of gastric contents. While four active failures were recognized, an equal number of latent failures also became apparent. The identification of both types of failures permitted the formulation of recommendations to avoid further occurrences. Thus this model of accident causation can provide a useful mechanism to investigate and possibly prevent anaesthetic accidents. PMID:1544192

  4. Development of forensic assay signatures for ebolaviruses.

    PubMed

    Song, Jian; Doggett, Norman; Wren, Melinda; Burr, Tom; Fenimore, P W; Hatcher, Eneida L; Bruno, William J; Li, Po-E; Stubben, Chris; Wolinsky, Murray

    2015-03-01

    Ebolaviruses are a diverse group of RNA viruses comprising five different species, four of which cause fatal hemorrhagic fever in humans. Because of their high infectivity and lethality, ebolaviruses are considered major biothreat agents. Although detection assays exist, no forensic assays are currently available. Here, we report the development of forensic assays that differentiate ebolaviruses. We performed phylogenetic analyses and identified canonical SNPs for all species, major clades and isolates. TaqMan-MGB allelic discrimination assays based on these SNPs were designed, screened against synthetic RNA templates, and validated against ebolavirus genomic RNAs. A total of 45 assays were validated to provide 100% coverage of the species and variants with additional resolution at the isolate level. These assays enabled accurate forensic analysis on 4 "unknown" ebolaviruses. Unknowns were correctly classified to species and variant. A goal of providing resolution below the isolate level was not successful. These high-resolution forensic assays allow rapid and accurate genotyping of ebolaviruses for forensic investigations. PMID:25677086

  5. Forensic seismology revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, A.

    2007-01-01

    The first technical discussions, held in 1958, on methods of verifying compliance with a treaty banning nuclear explosions, concluded that a monitoring system could be set up to detect and identify such explosions anywhere except underground: the difficulty with underground explosions was that there would be some earthquakes that could not be distinguished from an explosion. The development of adequate ways of discriminating between earthquakes and underground explosions proved to be difficult so that only in 1996 was a Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) finally negotiated. Some of the important improvements in the detection and identification of underground tests—that is in forensic seismology—have been made by the UK through a research group at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE). The paper describes some of the advances made in identification since 1958, particularly by the AWE Group, and the main features of the International Monitoring System (IMS), being set up to verify the Test Ban. Once the Treaty enters into force, then should a suspicious disturbance be detected the State under suspicion of testing will have to demonstrate that the disturbance was not a test. If this cannot be done satisfactorily the Treaty has provisions for on-site inspections (OSIs): for a suspicious seismic disturbance for example, an international team of inspectors will search the area around the estimated epicentre of the disturbance for evidence that a nuclear test really took place. Early observations made at epicentral distances out to 2,000 km from the Nevada Test Site showed that there is little to distinguish explosion seismograms from those of nearby earthquakes: for both source types the short-period (SP: ˜1 Hz) seismograms are complex showing multiple arrivals. At long range, say 3,000 10,000 km, loosely called teleseismic distances, the AWE Group noted that SP P waves—the most widely and well-recorded waves from underground explosions—were in contrast simple, comprising one or two cycles of large amplitude followed by a low-amplitude coda. Earthquake signals on the other hand were often complex with numerous arrivals of similar amplitude spread over 35 s or more. It therefore appeared that earthquakes could be recognised on complexity. Later however, complex explosion signals were observed which reduced the apparent effectiveness of complexity as a criterion for identifying earthquakes. Nevertheless, the AWE Group concluded that for many paths to teleseismic distances, Earth is transparent for P signals and this provides a window through which source differences will be most clearly seen. Much of the research by the Group has focused on understanding the influence of source type on P seismograms recorded at teleseismic distances. Consequently the paper concentrates on teleseismic methods of distinguishing between explosions and earthquakes. One of the most robust criteria for discriminating between earthquakes and explosions is the m b : M s criterion which compares the amplitudes of the SP P waves as measured by the body-wave magnitude m b, and the long-period (LP: ˜0.05 Hz) Rayleigh-wave amplitude as measured by the surface-wave magnitude M s; the P and Rayleigh waves being the main wave types used in forensic seismology. For a given M s, the m b for explosions is larger than for most earthquakes. The criterion is difficult to apply however, at low magnitude (say m b < 4.5) and there are exceptions—earthquakes that look like explosions. A difficulty with identification criteria developed in the early days of forensic seismology was that they were in the main empirical—it was not known why they appeared to work and if there were test sites or earthquakes where they would fail. Consequently the AWE Group in cooperation with the University of Cambridge used seismogram modelling to try and understand what controls complexity of SP P seismograms, and to put the m b : M s criterion on a theoretical basis. The results of this work show that the m b : M s criterion is robust because several factors contribute to the separation of earthquakes and explosions. The principal reason for the separation however, is that for many orientations of the earthquake source there is at least one P nodal plane in the teleseismic window and this biases m b low. Only for earthquakes with near 45° dip-slip mechanisms where the antinode of P is in the source window is the m b: M s criterion predicted to fail. The results from modelling are consistent with observation—in particular there are earthquakes, “anomalous events”, which look explosion-like on the m b: M s criterion, that turn out to have mechanisms close to 45° dip-slip. Fortunately the P seismograms from such earthquakes usually show pP and sP, the reflections from the free surface of P and S waves radiated upwards. From the pP P and sP P times the focal depth can be estimated. So far the estimated depth of the anomalous events have turned out to be ˜20 km, too deep to be explosions. Studies show that the observation that P seismograms are more complex than predicted by simple models can be explained on the weak-signal hypothesis: the standard phases, direct P and the surface reflections, are weak because of amongst other things, the effects of the radiation pattern or obstacles on the source-to-receiver path; other non-standard arrivals then appear relatively large on the seismograms. What has come out of the modelling of P seismograms is a criterion for recognising suspicious disturbances based on simplicity rather than complexity. Simple P seismograms for earthquakes at depths of more than a few kilometres are likely to be radiated only to stations that lie in a confined range of azimuths and distances. If then, simple seismograms are recorded over a wide range of distances and particularly azimuths, it is unlikely the source is an earthquake at depth. It is possible to test this using the relative amplitudes of direct P and later arrivals that might be surface reflections. The procedure is to use only the simple P seismograms on the assumption that whereas the propagation through Earth may make a signal more complex it is unlikely to make it simpler. From the amplitude of the coda of these seismograms, bounds can be placed on the size of possible pP and sP. The relative-amplitude method is then used to search for orientations of the earthquake source that are compatible with the observations. If no such orientations are found the source must be shallow so that any surface reflections merge with direct P, and hence could be an explosion. The IMS when completed will be a global network of 321 monitoring stations, including 170 seismological stations principally to detect the seismic waves from earthquakes and underground explosions. The IMS will also have stations with hydrophones, microbarographs and radionuclide detectors to detect explosions in the oceans and the atmosphere and any isotopes in the air characteristic of a nuclear test. The Global Communications Infrastructure provides communications between the IMS stations and the International Data Centre (IDC), Vienna, where the recordings from the monitoring stations is collected, collated, and analysed. The IDC issues bulletins listing geophysical disturbances, to States Signatories to the CTBT. The assessment of the disturbances to decide whether any are possible explosions, is a task for State Signatories. For each Signatory to do a detailed analysis of all disturbances would be expensive and time consuming. Fortunately many disturbances can be readily identified as earthquakes and removed from consideration—a process referred to as “event screening”. For example, many earthquakes with epicentres over the oceans can be distinguished from underwater explosions, because an explosion signal is of much higher frequency than that of earthquakes that occur below the ocean bed. Further, many earthquakes could clearly be identified at the IDC on the m b : M s criterion, but there is a difficulty—how to set the decision line. The possibility has to be very small that an explosion will be classed by mistake, as an earthquake. The decision line has therefore to be set conservatively, consequently with routine application of current screening criteria, only about 50% of earthquakes can be positively identified as such. Various methods have been proposed whereby a “determined violator” could avoid the provisions of a CTBT and carry out a test that would be either undetected or detected but not identified as an explosion. The increase in complexity and cost of such a test should discourage any State from attempting it. In addition, there is always the possibility of some stations detecting the test, the test being identified as suspicious, and so subject to an OSI. With time as the IMS becomes more efficient and effective it will act increasingly to deter anyone contemplating a clandestine test, from going ahead. What has emerged is several robust criteria. The criteria include: location, which when combined with hydro-acoustic data can identify earthquakes under the sea; m b : M s; and depth of focus. More detailed study is required of any remaining seismic disturbance that is regarded as suspicious: for example, is close to a site where nuclear tests have been carried out in the past. Any disturbance that is shown to be explosion-like, may be the subject of an OSI. One surprise is how little plate tectonics has contributed to resolving problems in forensic seismology. Much of the evidence for plate tectonics comes from seismological studies so it would be expected that the implications for Earth structure arising from forensic seismology would be consistent with plate-tectonic models. So far the AWE Group have found little synergy between plate tectonics and forensic seismology. It is to be hoped that the large volume of seismological data of high quality now being collected by the IMS and the increasing number of digital stations, will result in a revised Earth model that is consistent with the findings of forensic seismology, so that a future review of progress will show that the forensic seismologist can draw on this model in attempting to interpret apparently anomalous seismograms.

  6. International forensic automotive paint database

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bishea, Gregory A.; Buckle, Joe L.; Ryland, Scott G.

    1999-02-01

    The Technical Working Group for Materials Analysis (TWGMAT) is supporting an international forensic automotive paint database. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are collaborating on this effort through TWGMAT. This paper outlines the support and further development of the RCMP's Automotive Paint Database, `Paint Data Query'. This cooperative agreement augments and supports a current, validated, searchable, automotive paint database that is used to identify make(s), model(s), and year(s) of questioned paint samples in hit-and-run fatalities and other associated investigations involving automotive paint.

  7. [Incest--forensic genetic approach].

    PubMed

    Raczek, Ewa

    2012-01-01

    The paper presents intimate relationships between biologically and legally close relatives, complicated in the social, culture and religion perspective. (art. 201 of the Penal Code), but it chiefly addresses problems associated with giving opinion on the fatherhood towards the incestuous child. The report calls for a broader interest in this issue from expert witnesses in forensic genetics, as well as encourages them to publish examples taken from their own professional experience that may unquestionably be helpful to other practitioners in this field and above all will lead to extending educational methods related to widely understood DNA analysis in giving an opinion on arguable fatherhood. PMID:23424940

  8. A CONCEPT FOR NATIONAL NUCLEAR FORENSIC LIBRARIES

    SciTech Connect

    Wacker, John F.; Curry, Michael

    2010-08-11

    The interpretation of data from the nuclear forensic analysis of illicit nuclear material of unknown origin requires comparative data from samples of known origin. One way to provide such comparative data is to create a system of national nuclear forensics libraries, in which each participating country stores information about nuclear or other radioactive material that either resides in or was manufactured by that country. Such national libraries could provide an authoritative record of the material located in or produced by a particular country, and thus forms an essential prerequisite for a government to investigate illicit uses of nuclear or other radioactive material within its borders. We describe the concept of the national nuclear forensic library, recommendations for content and structure, and suggested querying methods for utilizing the information for addressing nuclear smuggling.

  9. Saliva in forensic odontology: A comprehensive update

    PubMed Central

    Saxena, Susmita; Kumar, Sanjeev

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, saliva has attracted much interest among researchers especially in the field of forensic sciences. This complex body fluid is gaining popularity due to its ease of collection, safety in handling and its close relationship with plasma. Analysis of saliva for serological testing and cellular content has proved to be of wide use in crime detection, drug and alcohol abuse, hormone identification, cases of poisoning and animal bites. There is a need for forensic laboratories to automate the settings specific for saliva as routinely done for blood or urine in order to consider saliva as the primary investigating tool in the absence of other body fluids. This update is aimed at highlighting the many uses of saliva in the practice of forensic odontology. PMID:26604508

  10. Saliva in forensic odontology: A comprehensive update.

    PubMed

    Saxena, Susmita; Kumar, Sanjeev

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, saliva has attracted much interest among researchers especially in the field of forensic sciences. This complex body fluid is gaining popularity due to its ease of collection, safety in handling and its close relationship with plasma. Analysis of saliva for serological testing and cellular content has proved to be of wide use in crime detection, drug and alcohol abuse, hormone identification, cases of poisoning and animal bites. There is a need for forensic laboratories to automate the settings specific for saliva as routinely done for blood or urine in order to consider saliva as the primary investigating tool in the absence of other body fluids. This update is aimed at highlighting the many uses of saliva in the practice of forensic odontology. PMID:26604508

  11. Forensics on a Shoestring Budget

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greco, Joseph A.

    2005-01-01

    In recent years, forensic science has gained popularity thanks in part to high-profile court cases and television programs. Although the cost of forensic equipment and supplies may initially seem too expensive for the typical high school classroom, the author developed an activity that incorporates forensics into her 10th-grade biology curriculum

  12. Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    American Psychologist, 2013

    2013-01-01

    In the past 50 years forensic psychological practice has expanded dramatically. Because the practice of forensic psychology differs in important ways from more traditional practice areas (Monahan, 1980) the "Specialty Guidelines for Forensic Psychologists" were developed and published in 1991 (Committee on Ethical Guidelines for Forensic…

  13. Forensics on a Shoestring Budget

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greco, Joseph A.

    2005-01-01

    In recent years, forensic science has gained popularity thanks in part to high-profile court cases and television programs. Although the cost of forensic equipment and supplies may initially seem too expensive for the typical high school classroom, the author developed an activity that incorporates forensics into her 10th-grade biology curriculum…

  14. Forensic Proteomics of Poxvirus Production

    SciTech Connect

    Wunschel, David S.; Tulman, Edan; Engelmann, Heather E.; Clowers, Brian H.; Geary, Steven J.; Robinson, Aaron C.; Liao, Xiaofen

    2013-08-27

    The field of microbial forensics has recently sought to develop methods to discern biological signatures to indicate production methods for biological agents. Viral agents have received less attention to date. Their obligate propagation in living cells makes purification from cellular material a challenge. This leads to potential carryover of protein-rich signature of their production system. Here we have explored a proteomic analysis of Vaccinia virus as a model poxvirus system in which to compare samples of virus propagated in different cell lines and subjected to different purification schemes. The proteomic data sets indicated viral, host cell and culture medium proteins, and several layers of data analysis were applied to build confidence in the peptide identification and capture information on the taxonomic utility of each. The analysis showed clear shifts in protein profiles with virus purification, with successive gradient purification steps showing different levels of viral protein enrichment. Peptides from cellular proteins, including those present in purified virus preparations, provided signatures which enabled discrimination of cell line substrates, including distinguishing between cells derived from different primate species. The ability to discern multiple aspects of viral production demonstrates the potential value of proteomic analysis as tool for microbial forensics.

  15. Electron microscopy and forensic practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotrlý, Marek; Turková, Ivana

    2013-05-01

    Electron microanalysis in forensic practice ranks among basic applications used in investigation of traces (latents, stains, etc.) from crime scenes. Applying electron microscope allows for rapid screening and receiving initial information for a wide range of traces. SEM with EDS/WDS makes it possible to observe topography surface and morphology samples and examination of chemical components. Physical laboratory of the Institute of Criminalistics Prague use SEM especially for examination of inorganic samples, rarely for biology and other material. Recently, possibilities of electron microscopy have been extended considerably using dual systems with focused ion beam. These systems are applied mainly in study of inner micro and nanoparticles , thin layers (intersecting lines in graphical forensic examinations, analysis of layers of functional glass, etc.), study of alloys microdefects, creating 3D particles and aggregates models, etc. Automated mineralogical analyses are a great asset to analysis of mineral phases, particularly soils, similarly it holds for cathode luminescence, predominantly colour one and precise quantitative measurement of their spectral characteristics. Among latest innovations that are becoming to appear also at ordinary laboratories are TOF - SIMS systems and micro Raman spectroscopy with a resolution comparable to EDS/WDS analysis (capable of achieving similar level as through EDS/WDS analysis).

  16. Sensitivity analysis of a short distance atmospheric dispersion model applied to the Fukushima disaster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Périllat, Raphaël; Girard, Sylvain; Korsakissok, Irène; Mallet, Vinien

    2015-04-01

    In a previous study, the sensitivity of a long distance model was analyzed on the Fukushima Daiichi disaster case with the Morris screening method. It showed that a few variables, such as horizontal diffusion coefficient or clouds thickness, have a weak influence on most of the chosen outputs. The purpose of the present study is to apply a similar methodology on the IRSN's operational short distance atmospheric dispersion model, called pX. Atmospheric dispersion models are very useful in case of accidental releases of pollutant to minimize the population exposure during the accident and to obtain an accurate assessment of short and long term environmental and sanitary impact. Long range models are mostly used for consequences assessment while short range models are more adapted to the early phases of the crisis and are used to make prognosis. The Morris screening method was used to estimate the sensitivity of a set of outputs and to rank the inputs by their influences. The input ranking is highly dependent on the considered output, but a few variables seem to have a weak influence on most of them. This first step revealed that interactions and non-linearity are much more pronounced with the short range model than with the long range one. Afterward, the Sobol screening method was used to obtain more quantitative results on the same set of outputs. Using this method was possible for the short range model because it is far less computationally demanding than the long range model. The study also confronts two parameterizations, Doury's and Pasquill's models, to contrast their behavior. The Doury's model seems to excessively inflate the influence of some inputs compared to the Pasquill's model, such as the altitude of emission and the air stability which do not have the same role in the two models. The outputs of the long range model were dominated by only a few inputs. On the contrary, in this study the influence is shared more evenly between the inputs.

  17. Location tracking forensics on mobile devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sack, Stefan; Kröger, Knut; Creutzburg, Reiner

    2013-03-01

    The spread of navigation devices has increased significantly over the last 10 years. With the help of the current development of even smaller navigation receiver units it is to navigate with almost any current smart phone. Modern navigation systems are no longer limited to satellite navigation, but use current techniques, e.g. WLAN localization. Due to the increased use of navigation devices their relevance to forensic investigations has risen rapidly. Because navigation, for example with navigation equipment and smartphones, have become common place these days, also the amount of saved navigation data has risen rapidly. All of these developments lead to a necessary forensic analysis of these devices. However, there are very few current procedures for investigating of navigation devices. Navigation data is forensically interesting because by the position of the devices in most cases the location and the traveled path of the owner can be reconstructed. In this work practices for forensic analysis of navigation devices are developed. Different devices will be analyzed and it is attempted, by means of forensic procedures to restore the traveled path of the mobile device. For analysis of the various devices different software and hardware is used. There will be presented common procedures for securing and testing of mobile devices. Further there will be represented the specials in the investigation of each device. The different classes considered are GPS handhelds, mobile navigation devices and smartphones. It will be attempted, wherever possible, to read all data of the device. The aim is to restore complete histories of the navigation data and to forensically study and analyze these data. This is realized by the usage of current forensic software e.g. TomTology or Oxygen Forensic Suite. It is also attempted to use free software whenever possible. Further alternative methods are used (e.g. rooting) to access locked data of the unit. To limit the practical work the data extraction is focused on the frequently used device sample of a specific class, as the procedure for many groups of devices can be similar. In the present work a Garmin Dakota 10, a TomTom GO 700, an iPhone 4 (iOS) and a Samsung Galaxy S Plus (Android) is used because they have a wide circulation.

  18. Forensic Science Center

    SciTech Connect

    Andresen, B.; Grant, P.M.

    1994-03-01

    Since 1991, the Laboratory's Forensic Science Center has focused a comprehensive range of analytical expertise on issues related to non proliferation, counterterrorism, and domestic law enforcement. During this short period, LLNL's singular combination of human and technological resources has made the Center among the best of its kind in the world. The Forensic Science Center houses a variety of state-of-the-art analytical tools ranging from gas chromatograph/mass spectrometers to ultratrace DNA detection techniques. The Center's multidisciplinary staff provides expertise in organic and inorganic analytical chemistry, nuclear science, biochemistry, and genetics useful for supporting law enforcement and for verifying compliance with international treaties and agreements.

  19. Research in forensic odontology.

    PubMed Central

    Whittaker, D. K.

    1982-01-01

    Forensic odontology has established itself as an important and often indispensable science in medicolegal matters and in particular in identification of the dead. Much of its expertise is drawn from clinical experience based on basic research and advances in knowledge in dentistry in general. There has also been, particularly during the past two decades, an increasing body of research in specifically forensic dental matters and these studies form the subject of this review. Progress in this field, as in others, will depend upon development of training pathways and research facilities in our dental schools. Images FIG. 1 FIG. 2 PMID:7044254

  20. Forensic applications of ambient ionization mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Ifa, Demian R; Jackson, Ayanna U; Paglia, Giuseppe; Cooks, R Graham

    2009-08-01

    This review highlights and critically assesses forensic applications in the developing field of ambient ionization mass spectrometry. Ambient ionization methods permit the ionization of samples outside the mass spectrometer in the ordinary atmosphere, with minimal sample preparation. Several ambient ionization methods have been created since 2004 and they utilize different mechanisms to create ions for mass-spectrometric analysis. Forensic applications of these techniques--to the analysis of toxic industrial compounds, chemical warfare agents, illicit drugs and formulations, explosives, foodstuff, inks, fingerprints, and skin--are reviewed. The minimal sample pretreatment needed is illustrated with examples of analysis from complex matrices (e.g., food) on various substrates (e.g., paper). The low limits of detection achieved by most of the ambient ionization methods for compounds of forensic interest readily offer qualitative confirmation of chemical identity; in some cases quantitative data are also available. The forensic applications of ambient ionization methods are a growing research field and there are still many types of applications which remain to be explored, particularly those involving on-site analysis. Aspects of ambient ionization currently undergoing rapid development include molecular imaging and increased detection specificity through simultaneous chemical reaction and ionization by addition of appropriate chemical reagents. PMID:19241065

  1. Challenge Paper: Validation of Forensic Techniques for Criminal Prosecution

    SciTech Connect

    Erbacher, Robert F.; Endicott-Popovsky, Barbara E.; Frincke, Deborah A.

    2007-04-10

    Abstract: As in many domains, there is increasing agreement in the user and research community that digital forensics analysts would benefit from the extension, development and application of advanced techniques in performing large scale and heterogeneous data analysis. Modern digital forensics analysis of cyber-crimes and cyber-enabled crimes often requires scrutiny of massive amounts of data. For example, a case involving network compromise across multiple enterprises might require forensic analysis of numerous sets of network logs and computer hard drives, potentially involving 100?s of gigabytes of heterogeneous data, or even terabytes or petabytes of data. Also, the goal for forensic analysis is to not only determine whether the illicit activity being considered is taking place, but also to identify the source of the activity and the full extent of the compromise or impact on the local network. Even after this analysis, there remains the challenge of using the results in subsequent criminal and civil processes.

  2. NOAA's Improved Fire and Smoke Analysis, A Global Disaster Information Network Initiative

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, G.; McNamara, D. P.; Fennimore, R.; Ramsay, B. H.; Ruminski, M.; Ruminski, M.

    2001-05-01

    The National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS) of The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) produces a smoke and fire monitoring product based on environmental satellite data. In response to an initiative by NOAA's Global Disaster Information Network (GDIN), NESDIS is in the process of enhancing this product to better serve the needs of its customers. Environmental satellitescan detect and monitor hot spots and smoke associated with wildfires. Infrared and visible band sensors on NESDIS' Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (GOES)and Polar Orbiting Operational Environmental Satellites (POES) can delineate hot spots and smoke, respectively, resulting from fire activity. In response to requirements of the Fire Weather Program of the National Weather Service (NWS), NESDIS currently twice per day produces a product delineating hot spots and smoke for selected limited geographic areas of the Continental United States (CONUS). GOES and POES imagery is analyzed on an image display system, and a graphical depiction of smoke and hot spot areas is drawn by the analyst. The product is disseminated as imagery via the Internet, and is utilized by Incident Meteorologists, SPC personnel, and U.S. Forest Service fire managers. In response to formally expressed requirements of the NWS, and informal requests from many other users, including federal, state, and local fire management agencies, for a more frequent, spatially accurate product covering all of CONUS and Alaska, GDIN has initiated a program to enhance NOAA's smoke and fire products. The Satellite Services Division (SSD) of NESDIS' Office of Satellite Data Processing and Distribution is developing the Hazard Mapping System (HMS) based on these requirements. It will use data from GOES, POES, and the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program's (DMSP) On Line Scanner, which can detect hot spots at night. Automated hot spot and smoke detections will be provided by the Automated Biomass Burning Algorithm (ABBA) and the Fire Identification, Mapping and Monitoring Algorithm (FIMMA), developed by NESDIS' Office of Research and Applications (ORA). Smoke trajectories will be calculated by the HYbrid Single-Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory Model (HYSPLIT), developed by NOAA's Air Resources Laboratory. Satellite imagery and model outputs will be displayable as multiple data layers in the HMS updated half hourly, and analysts will generate a composite image and graphic product disseminated on the Internet. The product will be geolocated and be compatible for display by commonly used Geographic Information Systems. Users will be able to choose geographic areas displayed. An operational demonstration is scheduled for early Summer, 2001, with subsequent further development, including the possible incorporation of data from the NASA's MODIS instrument and satellite derived vegetation index and fire potential maps.

  3. Application of the angle measure technique as image texture analysis method for the identification of uranium ore concentrate samples: New perspective in nuclear forensics.

    PubMed

    Fongaro, Lorenzo; Lin Ho, Doris Mer; Kvaal, Knut; Mayer, Klaus; Rondinella, Vincenzo V

    2016-05-15

    The identification of interdicted nuclear or radioactive materials requires the application of dedicated techniques. In this work, a new approach for characterizing powder of uranium ore concentrates (UOCs) is presented. It is based on image texture analysis and multivariate data modelling. 26 different UOCs samples were evaluated applying the Angle Measure Technique (AMT) algorithm to extract textural features on samples images acquired at 250× and 1000× magnification by Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM). At both magnifications, this method proved effective to classify the different types of UOC powder based on the surface characteristics that depend on particle size, homogeneity, and graininess and are related to the composition and processes used in the production facilities. Using the outcome data from the application of the AMT algorithm, the total explained variance was higher than 90% with Principal Component Analysis (PCA), while partial least square discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) applied only on the 14 black colour UOCs powder samples, allowed their classification only on the basis of their surface texture features (sensitivity>0.6; specificity>0.6). This preliminary study shows that this method was able to distinguish samples with similar composition, but obtained from different facilities. The mean angle spectral data obtained by the image texture analysis using the AMT algorithm can be considered as a specific fingerprint or signature of UOCs and could be used for nuclear forensic investigation. PMID:26992543

  4. The NASA Applied Science Program Disasters Area: Disaster Applications Research and Response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murray, J. J.; Lindsay, F. E.; Stough, T.; Jones, C. E.

    2014-12-01

    The goal of the Natural Disaster Application Area is to use NASA's capabilities in spaceborne, airborne, surface observations, higher-level derived data products, and modeling and data analysis to improve natural disaster forecasting, mitigation, and response. The Natural Disaster Application Area applies its remote sensing observations, modeling and analysis capabilities to provide hazard and disaster information where and when it is needed. Our application research activities specifically contribute to 1) Understanding the natural processes that produce hazards, 2)Developing hazard mitigation technologies, and 3)Recognizing vulnerability of interdependent critical infrastructure. The Natural Disasters Application area selects research projects through a rigorous, impartial peer-review process that address a broad spectrum of disasters which afflict populations within the United States, regionally and globally. Currently there are 19 active projects in the research portfolio which address the detection, characterization, forecasting and response to a broad range of natural disasters including earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions and ash dispersion, wildfires, hurricanes, floods, tornado damage assessment, oil spills and disaster data mining. The Disasters team works with federal agencies to aid the government in meeting the challenges associated with natural disaster response and to transfer technologies to agencies as they become operational. Internationally, the Disasters Area also supports the Committee on Earth Observations Working Group on Disasters, and the International Charter on Space and Disasters to increase, strengthen, and coordinate contributions of NASA Earth-observing satellites and applications products to disaster risk management. The CEOS group will lead pilot efforts focused on identifying key systems to support flooding, earthquake, and volcanic events.

  5. Experimental studies of forensic odontology to aid in the identification process.

    PubMed

    Saxena, Susmita; Sharma, Preeti; Gupta, Nitin

    2010-07-01

    The importance of dental identification is on the increase year after year. With the passage of time, the role of forensic odontology has increased as very often teeth and dental restorations are the only means of identification. Forensic odontology has played a key role in identification of persons in mass disasters (aviation, earthquakes, Tsunamis), in crime investigations, in ethnic studies, and in identification of decomposed and disfigured bodies like that of drowned persons, fire victims, and victims of motor vehicle accidents. The various methods employed in forensic odontology include tooth prints, radiographs, photographic study, rugoscopy, cheiloscopy and molecular methods. Investigative methods applied in forensic odontology are reasonably reliable, yet the shortcomings must be accounted for to make it a more meaningful and relevant procedure. This paper gives an overview of the various experimental studies to aid in the identification processes, discussing their feasibilities and limitations in day-to-day practice. PMID:21731343

  6. Experimental studies of forensic odontology to aid in the identification process

    PubMed Central

    Saxena, Susmita; Sharma, Preeti; Gupta, Nitin

    2010-01-01

    The importance of dental identification is on the increase year after year. With the passage of time, the role of forensic odontology has increased as very often teeth and dental restorations are the only means of identification. Forensic odontology has played a key role in identification of persons in mass disasters (aviation, earthquakes, Tsunamis), in crime investigations, in ethnic studies, and in identification of decomposed and disfigured bodies like that of drowned persons, fire victims, and victims of motor vehicle accidents. The various methods employed in forensic odontology include tooth prints, radiographs, photographic study, rugoscopy, cheiloscopy and molecular methods. Investigative methods applied in forensic odontology are reasonably reliable, yet the shortcomings must be accounted for to make it a more meaningful and relevant procedure. This paper gives an overview of the various experimental studies to aid in the identification processes, discussing their feasibilities and limitations in day-to-day practice. PMID:21731343

  7. Exploring Trends in Forensic Odontology

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Narendra Nath; Ain, Tasneem S.; Sultan, Saima

    2014-01-01

    Background: Forensic odontology nowadays has become a developing science and is of great importance to society. It is important that dental practitioners should have a proper knowledge of forensics as the need has increased greatly over the last decades due to the unprecedented demand from the criminal justice including terrorism in Kashmir valley (J&K India). Materials and Methods: Data was collected based on questionnaire survey among qualified dental practitioners related to their awareness of forensic odontology. Results: A total number of 235 dental practitioners responded to the questionnaire. Results showed that there was a low confidence, in handling of forensic odontology related cases among dental practitioners and majority of dental practitioners were not having any formal training in forensic odontology. Conclusion: Each dental practitioner has a responsibility to understand the forensic implications associated with the practice of his profession and thus he should work sincerely enough so to ensure his contribution in the field of forensic odontology. PMID:25654026

  8. Construction of Disaster Prevention Map Based on Digital Imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yun, H.-C.; Kim, J.-B.; Lee, J.-S.; Kang, I.-J.

    2012-08-01

    As global warming and has caused the number of abnormal changes, lots of damage has arisen recently due to natural disaster. To prevent and cope with these annually repeated natural hazards, the disaster management is required including the systematic management. Currently the national and related agencies are producing the flood hazard map and flood e map in case of disaster management and recovery, and coping with the disaster using them for building recovery plan, grasping disaster status and cause analysis. The hazard map is the one which indicates the calamity danger districts including the degree of risk in general and called the degree of disaster risk map or disaster expectation map and it means the map which marks the hazard zones by estimating the areas to coping with the natural disaster in the inclusive concept. Now that such hazard map should be understood easily from the place of the person concerned in the disaster, the production of new type of map which can be easily understood visually rather than the map by diagram. In this study, new concept disaster prevention map based on digital image and disaster attribute information was constructed. The various disaster information such as the areas of inundation of river, submergence and landslip caused by severe rain storm and typhoon is marked in the hazard information map, and the rescue route and refuge area are also marked by setting the damage-expected areas. The disaster prevention map is able to support quick decision making for disaster management and resident education.

  9. Suicidal or homicidal sharp force injuries? A review and critical analysis of the heterogeneity in the forensic literature.

    PubMed

    De-Giorgio, Fabio; Lodise, Maria; Quaranta, Gianluigi; Spagnolo, Antonio G; d'Aloja, Ernesto; Pascali, Vincenzo L; Grassi, Vincenzo M

    2015-01-01

    The differential diagnosis between self-inflicted and nonself-inflicted, suicidal and homicidal, injuries is difficult or impossible in many cases and, above all, cannot be made on the basis of information obtained solely from the autopsy or the medicolegal clinical examination. The purpose of this study is to analyze the literature on suicidal and homicidal sharp force injuries and identify the relevant parameters that may help differentiate between suicidal and homicidal deaths. To achieve this goal, a review of 595 potentially relevant articles was performed. After excluding the nonrelevant papers by screening the titles, all abstracts were reviewed, and articles meeting the inclusion criteria underwent a full-text review. The following parameters were compiled into a table: number of cases, localization of the injuries, and number of injuries. The data were statistically analyzed and compared with those available in the forensic literature. On the basis of the heterogeneity of data revealed by the present review, a simple and short checklist of the parameters that should be included when reporting suicides and homicides by sharp force has been proposed. PMID:25428547

  10. Forensic Tournaments Are Expendable!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mannebach, Wayne C.

    1973-01-01

    In light of current cutbacks in funds for college Speech Departments, intercollegiate forensic competition activities should be ended, a move which would result in savings that can be applied to retaining current faculty, salary levels, and other necessities. Intraumural and community-related speaking opportunities can be provided to replace…

  11. Changing Concepts in Forensics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zarefsky, David

    This paper discusses five theoretical concepts in general and two theoretical models in particular that are involved in forensics. The five concepts are: (1) causation, an inquiry into the reasons for ongoing processes or problems; (2) inherency, the division of a universe into its necessary features and its accidental features; (3) presumption, a…

  12. World Trade Center disaster exposure-related probable posttraumatic stress disorder among responders and civilians: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Bian; Tarigan, Lukman H; Bromet, Evelyn J; Kim, Hyun

    2014-01-01

    The World Trade Center (WTC) disaster on September 11, 2001 was an unprecedented traumatic event with long-lasting health consequences among the affected populations in the New York metropolitan area. This meta-analysis aimed to estimate the risk of probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) associated with specific types of WTC exposures. Meta-analytical findings from 10 studies of 3,271 to 20,294 participants yielded 37 relevant associations. The pooled summary odds ratio (OR) was 2.05 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.82, 2.32), with substantial heterogeneity linked to exposure classification, cohort type, data source, PTSD assessment instrument/criteria, and lapse time since 9/11. In general, responders (e.g. police, firefighters, rescue/recovery workers and volunteers) had a lower probable PTSD risk (OR = 1.61; 95% CI: 1.39, 1.87) compared to civilians (e.g. residents, office workers, and passersby; OR = 2.71, 95% CI: 2.35, 3.12). The differences in ORs between responders and civilians were larger for physical compared to psychosocial exposure types. We also found that injury, lost someone, and witnessed horror were the three (out of six) most pernicious exposures. These findings suggest that these three exposures should be a particular focus in psychological evaluation and treatment programs in WTC intervention and future emergency preparedness efforts. PMID:25047411

  13. World Trade Center Disaster Exposure-Related Probable Posttraumatic Stress Disorder among Responders and Civilians: A Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bian; Tarigan, Lukman H.; Bromet, Evelyn J.; Kim, Hyun

    2014-01-01

    The World Trade Center (WTC) disaster on September 11, 2001 was an unprecedented traumatic event with long-lasting health consequences among the affected populations in the New York metropolitan area. This meta-analysis aimed to estimate the risk of probable posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) associated with specific types of WTC exposures. Meta-analytical findings from 10 studies of 3,271 to 20,294 participants yielded 37 relevant associations. The pooled summary odds ratio (OR) was 2.05 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.82, 2.32), with substantial heterogeneity linked to exposure classification, cohort type, data source, PTSD assessment instrument/criteria, and lapse time since 9/11. In general, responders (e.g. police, firefighters, rescue/recovery workers and volunteers) had a lower probable PTSD risk (OR = 1.61; 95% CI: 1.39, 1.87) compared to civilians (e.g. residents, office workers, and passersby; OR = 2.71, 95% CI: 2.35, 3.12). The differences in ORs between responders and civilians were larger for physical compared to psychosocial exposure types. We also found that injury, lost someone, and witnessed horror were the three (out of six) most pernicious exposures. These findings suggest that these three exposures should be a particular focus in psychological evaluation and treatment programs in WTC intervention and future emergency preparedness efforts. PMID:25047411

  14. Operation earthquake 2011: Christchurch earthquake disaster victim identification.

    PubMed

    Trengrove, H

    2011-12-01

    At 12.51pm on Tuesday 22 February 2011, an earthquake of magnitude 6.3 struck the Christchurch region of New Zealand causing massive destruction with hundreds of people injured and killed. The New Zealand Society of Forensic Odontology response commenced two hours after the earthquake with the implementation of the national Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) forensic odontology plan. The importance of good planning, the integration of odontology as part of the immediate response and the deployment of odontology personnel to the scene were features of this operation. Stringent quality assurance processes were integrated into the planning which assisted in the robust outcomes. Smile photograph comparisons played a role in a number of difficult identifications. In the four months following the earthquake teams of odontology personnel worked tirelessly in an effort to identify the remains of those killed during the disaster. At the conclusion of the operation 97% of the deceased have been identified and returned to their families. PMID:22717907

  15. Forensic DNA databases in Western Balkan region: retrospectives, perspectives, and initiatives

    PubMed Central

    Marjanović, Damir; Konjhodžić, Rijad; Butorac, Sara Sanela; Drobnič, Katja; Merkaš, Siniša; Lauc, Gordan; Primorac, Damir; Anđelinović, Šimun; Milosavljević, Mladen; Karan, Željko; Vidović, Stojko; Stojković, Oliver; Panić, Bojana; Vučetić Dragović, Anđelka; Kovačević, Sandra; Jakovski, Zlatko; Asplen, Chris; Primorac, Dragan

    2011-01-01

    The European Network of Forensic Science Institutes (ENFSI) recommended the establishment of forensic DNA databases and specific implementation and management legislations for all EU/ENFSI members. Therefore, forensic institutions from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia launched a wide set of activities to support these recommendations. To assess the current state, a regional expert team completed detailed screening and investigation of the existing forensic DNA data repositories and associated legislation in these countries. The scope also included relevant concurrent projects and a wide spectrum of different activities in relation to forensics DNA use. The state of forensic DNA analysis was also determined in the neighboring Slovenia and Croatia, which already have functional national DNA databases. There is a need for a ‘regional supplement’ to the current documentation and standards pertaining to forensic application of DNA databases, which should include regional-specific preliminary aims and recommendations. PMID:21674821

  16. [Considerations 20 years after the publication of the article "The dentist as an expert in disasters--dental identification in the disaster with the Zeebruge ferry"].

    PubMed

    De Valck, Eddy

    2009-01-01

    The Herald of Free Enterprise disaster on the 6th of March 1987 just outside Zeebrugge was the first major disaster that happened in Belgium after the federal authorities put together a DVI team. It was also the first time dental identification by forensic odontologists was used in a Belgian mass disaster. Although international cooperation and coordination through Interpol in cases of disasters with multinational victims hadn't reached today's level, the handling of the disaster and the cooperation between Belgian and British specialists within DVI teams was a prime example of today's Interpol DVI philosophy. The lessons learned from this disaster were reported at the Interpol DVI working group annual meeting and subsequently new guidelines were implemented in the DVI Guide and Forms. The experience gained from this major event definitely helped in the development and proficiency of the Belgian DVI team, which became very professional in the years to follow through its involvement in different mass disasters and major incidents within Belgium and abroad and contributed a whole lot to the development of forensic odontology in Belgium. PMID:20178172

  17. Development and validation of a sensitive UPLC-MS/MS method for the analysis of narcotic analgesics in urine and whole blood in forensic context.

    PubMed

    Verplaetse, Ruth; Tytgat, Jan

    2012-02-10

    Narcotic analgesics are widely (ab) used and sometimes only occur in low concentrations in biological samples. Therefore, a highly sensitive liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry method was developed for simultaneous analysis of 9 narcotic analgesics and metabolites (buprenorphine, O-desmethyltramadol, fentanyl, norbuprenorphine, norfentanyl, pethidine, piritramide, tilidine and tramadol) in urine and whole blood. Sample preparation was performed on a mixed-mode cation exchange solid phase extraction cartridge with an additional alkaline wash step to decrease matrix effects and thus increase sensitivity. Ionization with electrospray ionization was found to be more efficient than atmospheric pressure chemical ionization. The use of a mobile phase of high pH resulted in higher electrospray ionization signals than the conventional low pH mobile phases. In the final method, gradient elution with 10mM ammonium bicarbonate (pH 9) and methanol was performed on a small particle column (Acquity C18, 1.7 ?m, 2.1 mm 50 mm). Selectivity, matrix effects, recovery, linearity, sensitivity, precision, accuracy and stability were validated in urine and whole blood. All parameters were successfully evaluated and the method showed very high sensitivity, which was the major aim of this study. The applicability of the method was demonstrated by analysis of several forensic cases involving narcotic analgesics. PMID:21356580

  18. Principal component analysis for the forensic discrimination of black inkjet inks based on the Vis-NIR fibre optics reflection spectra.

    PubMed

    Gál, Lukáš; Oravec, Michal; Gemeiner, Pavol; Čeppan, Michal

    2015-12-01

    Nineteen black inkjet inks of six different brands were examined by fibre optics reflection spectroscopy in Visible and Near Infrared Region (Vis-NIR FORS) directly on paper with a view to achieving good resolution between them. These different inks were tested on nineteen different inkjet printers from three brands. Samples were obtained from prints by reflection probe. Processed reflection spectra in the range 500-1000 nm were used as samples in principal component analysis. Variability between spectra of the same ink obtained from different prints, as well as between spectra of square areas and lines was examined. For both spectra obtained from square areas and lines reference, Principal Component Analysis (PCA) models were created. According to these models, the inkjet inks were divided into clusters. PCA method is able to separate inks containing carbon black as main colorant from the other inks using other colorants. Some spectra were recorded from another piece of printer and used as validation samples. Spectra of validation samples were projected onto reference PCA models. According to position of validation samples in score plots it can be concluded that PCA based on Vis-NIR FORS can reliably differentiate inkjet inks which are included in the reference database. The presented method appears to be a suitable tool for forensic examination of questioned documents containing inkjet inks. Inkjet inks spectra were obtained without extraction or cutting sample with possibility to measure out of the laboratory. PMID:26448533

  19. Stand-off imaging Raman spectroscopy for forensic analysis of post-blast scenes: trace detection of ammonium nitrate and 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ceco, Ema; Önnerud, Hans; Menning, Dennis; Gilljam, John L.; Bââth, Petra; Östmark, Henric

    2014-05-01

    The following paper presents a realistic forensic capability test of an imaging Raman spectroscopy based demonstrator system, developed at FOI, the Swedish Defence Research Agency. The system uses a 532 nm laser to irradiate a surface of 25×25mm. The backscattered radiation from the surface is collected by an 8" telescope with subsequent optical system, and is finally imaged onto an ICCD camera. We present here an explosives trace analysis study of samples collected from a realistic scenario after a detonation. A left-behind 5 kg IED, based on ammonium nitrate with a TNT (2,4,6-trinitrotoluene) booster, was detonated in a plastic garbage bin. Aluminum sample plates were mounted vertically on a holder approximately 6 m from the point of detonation. Minutes after the detonation, the samples were analyzed with stand-off imaging Raman spectroscopy from a distance of 10 m. Trace amounts could be detected from the secondary explosive (ammonium nitrate with an analysis time of 1 min. Measurement results also indicated detection of residues from the booster (TNT). The sample plates were subsequently swabbed and analyzed with HPLC and GC-MS analyses to confirm the results from the stand-off imaging Raman system. The presented findings indicate that it is possible to determine the type of explosive used in an IED from a distance, within minutes after the attack, and without tampering with physical evidence at the crime scene.

  20. Enhanced forensic discrimination of pollutants by position-specific isotope analysis using isotope ratio monitoring by (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Julien, Maxime; Nun, Pierrick; Höhener, Patrick; Parinet, Julien; Robins, Richard J; Remaud, Gérald S

    2016-01-15

    In forensic environmental investigations the main issue concerns the inference of the original source of the pollutant for determining the liable party. Isotope measurements in geochemistry, combined with complimentary techniques for contaminant identification, have contributed significantly to source determination at polluted sites. In this work we have determined the intramolecular (13)C profiles of several molecules well-known as pollutants. By giving additional analytical parameters, position-specific isotope analysis performed by isotope ratio monitoring by (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance (irm-(13)C NMR) spectrometry gives new information to help in answering the major question: what is the origin of the detected contaminant? We have shown that isotope profiling of the core of a molecule reveals both the raw materials and the process used in its manufacture. It also can reveal processes occurring between the contamination site 'source' and the sampling site. Thus, irm-(13)C NMR is shown to be a very good complement to compound-specific isotope analysis currently performed by mass spectrometry for assessing polluted sites involving substantial spills of pollutant. PMID:26592622

  1. Delineation of multiple chlorinated ethene sources in an industrialized area--a forensic field study using compound-specific isotope analysis.

    PubMed

    Blessing, Michaela; Schmidt, Torsten C; Dinkel, Rainer; Haderlein, Stefan B

    2009-04-15

    Identification of polluters and the allocation of contaminant sources are key tasks when evaluating complex subsurface contamination with multiple and overlapping plumes, as frequently found in industrial areas. Under certain conditions, compound-specific stable isotope analysis (CSIA) may provide decisive information in such environmental litigation studies. Here, we present an illustrative case study highlighting the potential and limitations of using delta13C values of halogenated hydrocarbons (tetrachloroethene and its transformation products) as a keytracer for discriminating different contaminant sources, even in the presence of biodegradation and a complex hydrogeology. A multiple-line-of-evidence approach, including evaluation of historical, hydrological, geochemical, and isotopic data as well as statistical analysis, was applied to unravel the contamination scenario at the site. A key factor was the coverage of a wide area of the contaminant plumes with highly precise delta13C values of chlorinated ethenes in groundwater at trace concentrations in the low microgram per liter range made possible by the application of online purge-and-trap-GC/IRMS. Our work is the first successful example of a forensic isotope field study on chlorinated ethenes in a fractured bedrock aquifer. PMID:19475937

  2. Distinguishing between forensic science and forensic pseudoscience: testing of validity and reliability, and approaches to forensic voice comparison.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Geoffrey Stewart

    2014-05-01

    In this paper it is argued that one should not attempt to directly assess whether a forensic analysis technique is scientifically acceptable. Rather one should first specify what one considers to be appropriate principles governing acceptable practice, then consider any particular approach in light of those principles. This paper focuses on one principle: the validity and reliability of an approach should be empirically tested under conditions reflecting those of the case under investigation using test data drawn from the relevant population. Versions of this principle have been key elements in several reports on forensic science, including forensic voice comparison, published over the last four-and-a-half decades. The aural-spectrographic approach to forensic voice comparison (also known as "voiceprint" or "voicegram" examination) and the currently widely practiced auditory-acoustic-phonetic approach are considered in light of this principle (these two approaches do not appear to be mutually exclusive). Approaches based on data, quantitative measurements, and statistical models are also considered in light of this principle. PMID:24796954

  3. Palatal rugae and their role in forensic odontology.

    PubMed

    Jain, Anoop; Chowdhary, Ramesh

    2014-08-01

    Establishing a person's identity can be a difficult task in cases of traffic accidents or in mass disaster situations. The records collected to identify a decedent should be accurate and totally inclusive of objective findings. When a victim has no teeth, information for use in personal identification based on methods available in forensic odontology is much more limited than in the case of dentate victims. Palatal rugae have been considered relevant for human identification due to its stability, which is equivalent to the fingerprint, in that it is unique for each ruga pattern. Palatal rugae appear to possess the features of an ideal forensic identification parameter, that is, uniqueness, postmortem resistance, and stability. The purpose of this article was to review the literature, in order to determine if there is enough evidence to establish the use of palatal rugae in dental identification. PMID:23371877

  4. The challenges and effects of globalisation on forensic dentistry.

    PubMed

    Bernitz, Herman

    2009-08-01

    This paper deals with the challenges faced by forensic dentists in a world in which globalisation has become a reality. People travelling across the globe on a daily basis become victims of violent crime, terrorist attacks, human displacement, natural and man made disasters. This has forced colleagues in the profession to participate in joint operations exposing inadequacies which need urgent attention. Forensic dentists practise in isolation creating their own rules and regulations oblivious to the greater global community. No international protocols exist for the many procedures practised by the profession. Possible solutions to the complex problems are offered. These include co-operation with colleagues around the globe while striving for the highest levels of quality control, standardisation, reliability, impartiality, reproducibility and ethical accountability. PMID:19774806

  5. Integrating forensic information in a crime intelligence database.

    PubMed

    Rossy, Quentin; Ioset, Sylvain; Dessimoz, Damien; Ribaux, Olivier

    2013-07-10

    Since 2008, intelligence units of six states of the western part of Switzerland have been sharing a common database for the analysis of high volume crimes. On a daily basis, events reported to the police are analysed, filtered and classified to detect crime repetitions and interpret the crime environment. Several forensic outcomes are integrated in the system such as matches of traces with persons, and links between scenes detected by the comparison of forensic case data. Systematic procedures have been settled to integrate links assumed mainly through DNA profiles, shoemarks patterns and images. A statistical outlook on a retrospective dataset of series from 2009 to 2011 of the database informs for instance on the number of repetition detected or confirmed and increased by forensic case data. Time needed to obtain forensic intelligence in regard with the type of marks treated, is seen as a critical issue. Furthermore, the underlying integration process of forensic intelligence into the crime intelligence database raised several difficulties in regards of the acquisition of data and the models used in the forensic databases. Solutions found and adopted operational procedures are described and discussed. This process form the basis to many other researches aimed at developing forensic intelligence models. PMID:23127656

  6. Emergence of forensic podiatry--A novel sub-discipline of forensic sciences.

    PubMed

    Krishan, Kewal; Kanchan, Tanuj; DiMaggio, John A

    2015-10-01

    "Forensic podiatry is defined as the application of sound and researched podiatric knowledge and experience in forensic investigations; to show the association of an individual with a scene of crime, or to answer any other legal question concerned with the foot or footwear that requires knowledge of the functioning foot". Forensic podiatrists can contribute to forensic identification by associating the pedal evidence with the criminal or crime scene. The most common pedal evidence collected from the crime scene is in the form of footprints, shoeprints and their tracks and trails. Forensic podiatrists can establish identity of the individuals from the footprints in many ways. The analysis of bare footprints involves the identification based on the individualistic features like flat footedness, ridges, humps, creases, an extra toe, missing toe, corns, cuts, cracks, pits, deformities, and various features of the toe and heel region. All these individualistic features can link the criminal with the crime. In addition to these, parameters of body size like stature and body weight as well as sex can also be estimated by using anthropometric methods. If a series of footprints are recovered from the crime scene, then parameters of the gait analysis such as stride/step length and general movement of the criminal can be traced. Apart from these, a newly established biometric parameter of the footprints i.e. footprint ridge density can also be evaluated for personal identification. Careful analysis of the footprint ridge density can give an idea about the sex of the criminal whose footprints are recovered at the scene which can further help to reduce the burden of the investigating officer as the investigations then may be directed toward either a male suspect or a female suspect accordingly. This paper highlights various aspects of Forensic Podiatry and discusses the different methods of personal identification related to pedal evidence. PMID:26163192

  7. Advances in clinical forensic medicine.

    PubMed

    Santucci, Karen A; Hsiao, Allen L

    2003-06-01

    Clinical forensic medicine is the branch of medicine that deals specifically with cases involving both legal and medical aspects of patient care. A forensic evaluation refers to the detection, collection, and preservation of evidence. Pattern injury recognition, interpretation of injuries, documentation of testimonial and injuries (including photography), reporting requirements, and regulations are all vital components of a forensic evaluation, but are rarely the topic of discussion in training hospitals. Medical professionals working in prehospital care and acute care settings are likely to encounter perplexing forensic issues related to child abuse, sexual assault, or unexpected childhood death in their practice. This article focuses on the most recent insights related to sexual assault and forensic evidence as it relates to successful prosecution, shaken baby syndrome, and pediatric nonaccidental thermal injury. Also reviewed are the most current publications related to clinical forensic medicine for the year 2002, incorporating practical clinical tips from the most informative articles from the past decade. PMID:12806262

  8. Genetic relationships between blowflies (Calliphoridae) of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Stevens, J; Wall, R

    2001-08-15

    Phylogenetic relationships among blowfly (Calliphoridae) species of forensic importance are explored using DNA sequence data from the large sub-unit (lsu, 28S) ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene, the study includes representatives of a range of calliphorid species commonly encountered in forensic analysis in Britain and Europe. The data presented provide a basis to define molecular markers, including the identification of highly informative intra-sequence regions, which may be of use in the identification of larvae for forensic entomology. Phylogenetic analysis of the sequences also provides new insights into the different evolutionary patterns apparent within the family Calliphoridae which, additionally, can provide a measure of the degree of genetic variation likely to be encountered within taxonomic groups of differing forensic utility. PMID:11457618

  9. Coping with Disasters

    MedlinePlus

    ... feel dazed or numb after going through a disaster. You may also feel sad, helpless, or anxious. ... places or people that remind you of the disaster. You might have trouble sleeping, eating, or paying ...

  10. Disaster Recovery Planning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilkins, Jeannine W.

    1985-01-01

    Every school needs an effective disaster recovery plan that is flexible, comprehensive and designed to take into account unexpected disasters. Presents guidelines for preparing such a plan, with immediate and long-range recovery procedures. (MD)

  11. Disaster Preparation and Recovery

    MedlinePlus

    ... be a natural disaster, like a hurricane, tornado, flood or earthquake. It might also be man-made, ... the insurance you need, including special types, like flood insurance. No matter what kind of disaster you ...

  12. LARGE SCALE DISASTER ANALYSIS AND MANAGEMENT: SYSTEM LEVEL STUDY ON AN INTEGRATED MODEL

    EPA Science Inventory

    The increasing intensity and scale of human activity across the globe leading to severe depletion and deterioration of the Earth's natural resources has meant that sustainability has emerged as a new paradigm of analysis and management. Sustainability, conceptually defined by the...

  13. Microbes as forensic indicators.

    PubMed

    Alan, G; Sarah, J P

    2012-09-01

    The forensic potential of microorganisms is becoming increasingly apparent as a consequence of advances in molecular sciences and genomics. This review discusses instances in which microbes, and in particular bacteria, can impact upon forensic investigations. There is increasing evidence that humans have an extremely diverse 'microbiome' that may prove useful in determining ethnicity, country of origin, and even personal identity. The human microbiome differs between regions of the body and may prove useful for determining the nature of stains such as those caused by saliva and vaginal fluid: it may even be possible to link the stains to the person responsible for them. Similarly, the composition of the microbiome present in a soil sample may prove a useful indicator of geographic origin or as a means of linking people, animals, or objects together or to a specific location. Microorganisms are important in the decay process and also influence the presence and concentration of alcohol, drugs, and other chemicals of forensic relevance. There is also a possibility that the entry of microorganisms into the body during the agonal period may prove useful for the diagnosis of drowning. The transmission of infectious diseases, and in particular sexually-transmitted diseases, can provide evidence linking a victim and a suspect. Microorganisms that cause fatal infections are not always identified at the time of death and may lead to the death being considered 'suspicious'. If a fatal infection can be linked to a hospital or medical procedure it can lead to prosecutions and therefore it is important to determine when and where an infection was acquired. Similarly, naturally acquired infections need to be distinguished from those that result from malicious transmission. Microorganisms can therefore provide evidence in many different forensic scenarios but most of the work is still at the experimental stage and there are therefore many opportunities for further research. PMID:23018494

  14. Commentary: forensic psychotherapy.

    PubMed

    Altshul, Victor A

    2013-01-01

    Yakeley and Adshead present a broad view of the increasing influence of psychodynamically informed thought and practice on the British criminal justice system, adumbrating a model they call forensic psychotherapy. They explore such topics as mitigating factors, influences on recidivism, and psychotherapy with incarcerated inmates. While I am sympathetic with their overall aims, I outline some theoretical and practical difficulties in attempting to wed two very different systems of thought and the limitations that these difficulties impose. PMID:23503175

  15. Application impact analysis: a risk-based approach to business continuity and disaster recovery.

    PubMed

    Epstein, Beth; Khan, Dawn Christine

    2014-01-01

    There are many possible disruptions that can occur in business. Overlooking or under planning for Business Continuity requires time, understanding and careful planning. Business Continuity Management is far more than producing a document and declaring business continuity success. What is the recipe for businesses to achieve continuity management success? Application Impact Analysis is a method for understanding the unique Business Attributes. This AIA Cycle involves a risk based approach to understanding the business priority and considering business aspects such as Financial, Operational, Service Structure, Contractual Legal, and Brand. The output of this analysis provides a construct for viewing data, evaluating impact, and delivering results, for an approved valuation of Recovery Time Objectives (RTO). PMID:24578024

  16. Tattoos: forensic considerations.

    PubMed

    Byard, Roger W

    2013-12-01

    Tattooing refers to marking of the skin by puncturing and introducing pigmented material. Although it derives from a Polynesian word, tautau, decorative tattooing has been found in most societies over many centuries. The purpose of tattooing has varied from simple decoration, to a marker of social rank, criminal and noncriminal group membership, or a particular rite of passage in tribal communities. Tattooing may be used in medicine to mark areas for radiotherapy, and may occur inadvertently associated with certain occupations such as coal mining. Forensically, tattoos may be very useful in assisting with body identification if facial features or fingers have been damaged or removed. Aspects of a decedent's history may also be deduced from certain tattoos such as military tattoos in service personnel, rudimentary line tattoos with antisocial and anti-police messages in ex-prisoners, and syringes, marihuana leaves or mushrooms in illicit drug users. Tattoos have become more common in recent years in younger individuals in the West and so should be expected to be found with increasing incidence at the time of forensic autopsy examinations. Increasing population movements also mean that less common tattoos may be encountered during forensic evaluations. PMID:23846907

  17. Forensic web watch.

    PubMed

    Rutty, G N

    1999-12-01

    Now that one has logged onto the world wide web (WWW) and utilized one or more of the home pages listed previously (or used another equally good home page) to seek out basic information available to forensic practitioners, the question now arises of how to go about making the most of the information available. One feature consistent to most home pages is links to the home pages of Associations and Societies, one or more of which most practitioners will be members of. With access to the WWW not only have you access to your own association/society, but you can also keep up to date with all the others to which you have not paid subscriptions. Although an internet search using a WWW search engine or the 'top 6' home pages may assist in identifying a large number of association and society sites, one of the most useful places to start is the home page of the Indian Academy of Forensic Medicine (IAFM). This, to date, lists a total of 139 such sites. To access all the home pages listed may take in excess of 6 h so the following review looks at the range of sites available and recommends some places the author considers many people may wish to know and visit. Again, this is inevitably a personal choice and it is recognized that those sites not listed may, in fact, be the preferred choice for other users of the forensic WWW. PMID:15335474

  18. Disaster: Planning, Preparation, Prevention.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rutherford, Christine

    1990-01-01

    Discusses causes of library disasters and provides several examples of disasters. Emphasis is on the importance of awareness, insurance protection, a written disaster plan, cooperation with the fire marshall and insurance agent in planning, and staff training. Several elements of the written plan are listed. (22 references) (MES)

  19. Disaster Planning in Libraries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wong, Yi Ling; Green, Ravonne

    2006-01-01

    Disaster preparedness is an important issue in library management today. This article presents a general overview of the theoretical aspects of disaster planning in libraries. The stages of disaster planning are a circular process of planning, prevention, response, recovery, preparedness, and training.

  20. Planning for Disaster.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewis, Steven

    1996-01-01

    Disaster recovery planning need not be expensive nor complete to be effective. Systematic planning involves several crucial steps, including outlining the final plan, understanding the nature of a disaster's effects and the stages of disaster recovery, prioritizing appropriately, and learning how to test the plan in a practical way for the…

  1. Serving through Disaster

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuzyk, Raya

    2007-01-01

    Disaster planning focuses on future function and recovery, on helping libraries expeditiously return to their original states of operation. It all but ignores the concept of continuous function throughout a disaster. This is not true in the private and government sectors, however, which have managed to cover a wider load of disaster response…

  2. Serving through Disaster

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuzyk, Raya

    2007-01-01

    Disaster planning focuses on future function and recovery, on helping libraries expeditiously return to their original states of operation. It all but ignores the concept of continuous function throughout a disaster. This is not true in the private and government sectors, however, which have managed to cover a wider load of disaster response

  3. The killing field of Khao Lak: forensic odontology in Thailand tsunami victim identification.

    PubMed

    Tan, Peng-Hui

    2005-12-01

    Forensic odontology is the science of dental identification. This paper describes the contribution of forensic odontology to tsunami victim identification in Thailand, with particular reference to the Singaporean victims. Thirteen Singaporeans were reported missing in Phuket following the Indian ocean tsunami on 26 December 2004. To date, 10 victims have been found and identified, eight of whom were identified by dental records. The author travelled twice to southern Thailand and spent 5 weeks there. First, in December 2004 as part of a Singapore Police Force Disaster Victim Identification team deployed in Khao Lak, and later in July 2005 at the Thai Tsunami Victim Identification Information Management Centre in Phuket. PMID:16438268

  4. Awareness of Forensic Odontology among Legal Professionals, Chennai, India

    PubMed Central

    Selvajothi, Packiaraj; Lavanya, Chandra; Joshua, Elizabeth; Rao, Umadevi K.; Ranganathan, Kannan

    2014-01-01

    Background: The forensic discipline of law is a multidisciplinary team comprising of specialists in forensic medicine, forensic odontology, security and law. Aim: The study was to find the awareness level of scope and utility of forensic odontology among lawyers in Chennai, South India. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study using a self administered structured questionnaire was conducted in 200 lawyers between August and September of 2013. The data was analyzed depending on age, gender, type and years of practice. Results: Lawyers above 40 years of experience were more aware of palatal rugae analysis (P = 0.02), and those with more than 20 years were aware of lip print (P = 0.001) and bite mark analysis (P = 0.001). Males were more aware of forensic odontology with respect to criminal identification (P = 0.001). The knowledge of bite mark analysis was higher among male lawyers (P = 0.001), civil and criminal practicing lawyers (P = 0.004). All participants were aware that loss or fracture of tooth constitutes a grievous injury under Indian Penal Code (IPC) 320 clause 7(5). Conclusion: This study highlighted the knowledge of forensic odontology among legal professionals and also identified the areas in which they need further appraisal. PMID:25535602

  5. Automated Forensic Animal Family Identification by Nested PCR and Melt Curve Analysis on an Off-the-Shelf Thermocycler Augmented with a Centrifugal Microfluidic Disk Segment

    PubMed Central

    Zengerle, Roland; von Stetten, Felix; Schmidt, Ulrike

    2015-01-01

    Nested PCR remains a labor-intensive and error-prone biomolecular analysis. Laboratory workflow automation by precise control of minute liquid volumes in centrifugal microfluidic Lab-on-a-Chip systems holds great potential for such applications. However, the majority of these systems require costly custom-made processing devices. Our idea is to augment a standard laboratory device, here a centrifugal real-time PCR thermocycler, with inbuilt liquid handling capabilities for automation. We have developed a microfluidic disk segment enabling an automated nested real-time PCR assay for identification of common European animal groups adapted to forensic standards. For the first time we utilize a novel combination of fluidic elements, including pre-storage of reagents, to automate the assay at constant rotational frequency of an off-the-shelf thermocycler. It provides a universal duplex pre-amplification of short fragments of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cytochrome b genes, animal-group-specific main-amplifications, and melting curve analysis for differentiation. The system was characterized with respect to assay sensitivity, specificity, risk of cross-contamination, and detection of minor components in mixtures. 92.2% of the performed tests were recognized as fluidically failure-free sample handling and used for evaluation. Altogether, augmentation of the standard real-time thermocycler with a self-contained centrifugal microfluidic disk segment resulted in an accelerated and automated analysis reducing hands-on time, and circumventing the risk of contamination associated with regular nested PCR protocols. PMID:26147196

  6. Role of forensic odontologist in post mortem person identification.

    PubMed

    Pramod, Jahagirdar B; Marya, Anand; Sharma, Vidhii

    2012-09-01

    The natural teeth are the most durable organs in the bodies of vertebrates, and humankind's understanding of their own past and evolution relies heavily upon remnant dental evidence found as fossils. The use of features unique to the human dentition as an aid to personal identification is widely accepted within the forensic field. Comparative dental identifications play a major role in identifying the victims of violence, disaster or other mass tragedies. The comparison of ante-mortem and postmortem dental records to determine human identity has long been established. Indeed, it is still a major identification method in criminal investigations, mass disasters, grossly decomposed or traumatized bodies, and in other situations where visual identification is neither possible nor desirable. This article has comprehensively described some of the methods, and additional factors aiding in postmortem person identification. PMID:23559914

  7. Role of forensic odontologist in post mortem person identification

    PubMed Central

    Pramod, Jahagirdar B.; Marya, Anand; Sharma, Vidhii

    2012-01-01

    The natural teeth are the most durable organs in the bodies of vertebrates, and humankind's understanding of their own past and evolution relies heavily upon remnant dental evidence found as fossils. The use of features unique to the human dentition as an aid to personal identification is widely accepted within the forensic field. Comparative dental identifications play a major role in identifying the victims of violence, disaster or other mass tragedies. The comparison of ante-mortem and postmortem dental records to determine human identity has long been established. Indeed, it is still a major identification method in criminal investigations, mass disasters, grossly decomposed or traumatized bodies, and in other situations where visual identification is neither possible nor desirable. This article has comprehensively described some of the methods, and additional factors aiding in postmortem person identification. PMID:23559914

  8. Return or relocate? An inductive analysis of decision-making in a disaster.

    PubMed

    Henry, Jacques

    2013-04-01

    This paper proposes an inductive analysis of the decision as to whether to return or to relocate by persons in the State of Louisiana, United States, who evacuated after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in August and September 2005, respectively. Drawing on interviews with evacuees in these events and extensive fieldwork in the impacted area, the paper seeks to identify the folk dimensions of the decision-making process, assess their arrangements, and situate the process in the larger context of risk and resilience in an advanced society. It suggests that, despite the material and emotional upheaval experienced by affected persons, the decision-making process is a rational endeavour combining a definite set of tightly interconnected factors, involving material dimensions and substantive values that can act in concert or in conflict. In addition, it indicates that there are significant variations by geographic areas, homeownership, and kind of decision. Some theoretical implications, practical measures, and suggestions for future research are examined. PMID:23278427

  9. Modeling economic costs of disasters and recovery involving positive effects of reconstruction: analysis using a dynamic CGE model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, W.; Li, N.; Wu, J.-D.; Hao, X.-L.

    2013-11-01

    Disaster damages have negative effects on economy, whereas reconstruction investments have positive effects. The aim of this study is to model economic causes of disasters and recovery involving positive effects of reconstruction activities. Computable general equilibrium (CGE) model is a promising approach because it can incorporate these two kinds of shocks into a unified framework and further avoid double-counting problem. In order to factor both shocks in CGE model, direct loss is set as the amount of capital stock reduced on supply side of economy; A portion of investments restore the capital stock in existing period; An investment-driven dynamic model is formulated due to available reconstruction data, and the rest of a given country's saving is set as an endogenous variable. The 2008 Wenchuan Earthquake is selected as a case study to illustrate the model, and three scenarios are constructed: S0 (no disaster occurs), S1 (disaster occurs with reconstruction investment) and S2 (disaster occurs without reconstruction investment). S0 is taken as business as usual, and the differences between S1 and S0 and that between S2 and S0 can be interpreted as economic losses including reconstruction and excluding reconstruction respectively. The study showed that output from S1 is found to be closer to real data than that from S2. S2 overestimates economic loss by roughly two times that under S1. The gap in economic aggregate between S1 and S0 is reduced to 3% in 2011, a level that should take another four years to achieve under S2.

  10. The public health consequences of disasters.

    PubMed

    Noji, E K

    2000-01-01

    Although disasters have exacted a heavy toll of death and suffering, the future seems more frightening. Good disaster management must link data collection and analysis to the decision-making process. The overall objectives of disaster management from the viewpoint of public health are: 1) needs assessments; 2) matching available resources with defined needs; 3) prevention of further adverse health effects; 4) implementation of disease-control strategies; 5) evaluation of the effectiveness of the application of these strategies; and 6) improvement in contingency planning for future disasters. The effects of sudden-onset, natural disasters on humans are quantifiable. Knowledge of the epidemiology of deaths, injuries, and illnesses is essential to determine effective responses; provide public education; establish priorities, planning, and training. In addition, the temporal patterns for the medical care required must be established so that the needs in future disasters can be anticipated. This article discusses: 1) the nature of disasters due to sudden-onset, natural events; 2) the medical and health needs associated with such events and disasters; 3) practical issues of disaster responses; and 4) the advance organization and management of disasters. The discussion also includes: 1) discussions of past problems in disaster management including non-congruence between available supplies and the actual needs of the affected population; 2) information management; 3) needs assessments; 4) public health surveillance; and 5) linking information with decision-making. This discussion is followed by an analysis of what currently is known about the health-care needs during some specific types of sudden-onset, natural disasters: 1) floods; 2) tropical cyclones; 3) tornadoes; 4) volcanic eruptions; and 5) earthquakes. The article concludes with descriptions of some specific public-health problems associated with disasters including epidemics and disposition of corpses. All natural disasters are unique in that the regions affected have different social, economic, and health backgrounds. But, many similarities exist, and knowledge about these can ensure that the health and emergency medical relief and limited resources are well-managed. PMID:11227602

  11. A phenomenological analysis of disaster-related experiences in fire and emergency medical services personnel.

    PubMed

    De Soir, Erik; Knarren, Marcia; Zech, Emmanuelle; Mylle, Jacques; Kleber, Rolf; van der Hart, Onno

    2012-04-01

    This article explores the experiences of fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel during and immediately after a technological event using a phenomenological approach. Personnel engaged in the rescue operations during and immediately after the Ghislenghien gas explosion reflected upon their experiences in their responses to a specially designed, self-reporting questionnaire that included open-ended questions. Firefighters reported more perceived threat and direct exposure to death than did EMS personnel. Qualitative analysis indicates that the central characteristics of this potentially traumatizing event were the suddenness and massiveness of the impact, and the fact that it involved young victims and/or multiple deaths. With regard to emotions, powerlessness, horror, fear, a sense of apocalypse, and grief were experienced by both firefighters and EMS personnel. Firefighters noted that the death of colleagues, the involvement of friends and family, the massive impact, and exposure to the burned victims were most shocking. Emergency Medical Services personnel and in-hospital staff reported the impact, the confrontation with death, the involvement of friends and family, and the pain, suffering, and screaming of burned victims as the most shocking aspects of this event. Qualitative differences in the lived experiences of firefighters, EMS personnel, and in-hospital staff might be explained by differences in life threat, contact with death, and various degrees of training. PMID:22587814

  12. Development of a simple and low-cost enzymatic methodology for quantitative analysis of carbamates in meat samples of forensic interest.

    PubMed

    Sabino, Bruno Duarte; Torraca, Tathiana Guilliod; Moura, Claudia Melo; Rozenbaum, Hannah Felicia; de Castro Faria, Mauro Velho

    2010-05-01

    Foods contaminated with a granulated material similar to Temik (a commercial pesticide formulation containing the carbamate insecticide aldicarb) are often involved in accidental ingestion, suicides, and homicides in Brazil. We developed a simple technique to detect aldicarb. This technique is based on the inhibition of a stable preparation of the enzyme acetylcholinesterase, and it is specially adapted for forensic purposes. It comprises an initial extraction step with the solvent methylene chloride followed by a colorimetric acetylcholinesterase assay. We propose that results of testing contaminated forensic samples be expressed in aldicarb equivalents because, even though all other carbamates are also potent enzyme inhibitors, aldicarb is the contaminant most frequently found in forensic samples. This method is rapid (several samples can be run in a period of 2 h) and low cost. This method also proved to be precise and accurate, detecting concentrations as low as 40 microg/kg of aldicarb in meat samples. PMID:20345797

  13. Simultaneous analysis of 22 antiepileptic drugs in postmortem blood, serum and plasma using LC-MS-MS with a focus on their role in forensic cases.

    PubMed

    Deeb, Shaza; McKeown, Denise A; Torrance, Hazel J; Wylie, Fiona M; Logan, Barry K; Scott, Karen S

    2014-10-01

    In recent years, there has been a growth in reports of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) being misused on their own or in combination with other drugs of abuse in a variety of toxicological case types such as drug abuse, suicide, overdose and drug facilitated crime. To our knowledge, there are no simultaneous quantification methods for the analysis of the most commonly encountered AEDs in postmortem whole blood and clinical plasma/serum samples at the same time. A simple, accurate and cost-effective liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometric (LC-MS-MS) method has been developed and validated for the simultaneous quantification of carbamazepine (CBZ) and its metabolite CBZ-10,11-epoxide, eslicarbazepine acetate, oxcarbazepine and S-licarbazepine as a metabolite, gabapentin, lacosamide, lamotrigine, levetiracetam, pregabalin, phenobarbital, phenytoin and its metabolite 5-(p-hydroxyphenyl)-5-phenylhydantoin, retigabine (ezogabine) and its metabolite N-acetyl retigabine, rufinamide, stiripentol, topiramate, tiagabine, valproic acid, vigabatrin and zonisamide in postmortem whole blood, serum and plasma which would be suitable for routine forensic toxicological analysis and therapeutic drug monitoring. All AEDs were detected and quantified within 17 min without endogenous interferences. The correlation coefficient (R(2)) was >0.995 for all AEDs with accuracy ranging from 90 to 113% and precision <13% for all analytes. The recovery ranged from 70 to 98%. No carryover was observed in a blank control injected after the highest standard and the matrix effect was acceptable and ranged from 90 to 120%. The method has been successfully verified using authentic case samples that had previously been quantified using different methods. PMID:25217536

  14. Validation of high throughput sequencing and microbial forensics applications

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    High throughput sequencing (HTS) generates large amounts of high quality sequence data for microbial genomics. The value of HTS for microbial forensics is the speed at which evidence can be collected and the power to characterize microbial-related evidence to solve biocrimes and bioterrorist events. As HTS technologies continue to improve, they provide increasingly powerful sets of tools to support the entire field of microbial forensics. Accurate, credible results allow analysis and interpretation, significantly influencing the course and/or focus of an investigation, and can impact the response of the government to an attack having individual, political, economic or military consequences. Interpretation of the results of microbial forensic analyses relies on understanding the performance and limitations of HTS methods, including analytical processes, assays and data interpretation. The utility of HTS must be defined carefully within established operating conditions and tolerances. Validation is essential in the development and implementation of microbial forensics methods used for formulating investigative leads attribution. HTS strategies vary, requiring guiding principles for HTS system validation. Three initial aspects of HTS, irrespective of chemistry, instrumentation or software are: 1) sample preparation, 2) sequencing, and 3) data analysis. Criteria that should be considered for HTS validation for microbial forensics are presented here. Validation should be defined in terms of specific application and the criteria described here comprise a foundation for investigators to establish, validate and implement HTS as a tool in microbial forensics, enhancing public safety and national security. PMID:25101166

  15. Commentary: Coming Full Circle--Psychoanalysis, Psychodynamics, and Forensic Psychiatry.

    PubMed

    Hegarty, Angela M

    2015-12-01

    Drs. Simopoulos and Cohen argue that knowledge of one's unconscious processes improves the forensic psychiatrist's capacity to manage complex forensic situations and to generate forensic formulations and opinions that are demonstrably more valid and reliable, much like competence in cultural assessment and formulation. In practice, the challenges posed by the application of these principles in forensic settings are far outweighed by the potential benefit. Forensic practice is informed by many specialties. Forensic psychiatrists do not have to complete full training in these disciplines to make use of the knowledge and perspectives they offer. The same may not be true of psychodynamic assessment and formulation. Although much can be learned from supervision, case seminars, conferences, and reading, such knowledge does little to foster awareness of one's unconscious processes that by definition operate outside awareness and thus contribute to the vitiating effect of bias. To date, the only method whereby psychiatrists can effectively come to appreciate their own unconscious processes in action is arguably through their own analysis conducted in the course of training in analysis or psychodynamic psychotherapy. PMID:26668220

  16. Validation of high throughput sequencing and microbial forensics applications.

    PubMed

    Budowle, Bruce; Connell, Nancy D; Bielecka-Oder, Anna; Colwell, Rita R; Corbett, Cindi R; Fletcher, Jacqueline; Forsman, Mats; Kadavy, Dana R; Markotic, Alemka; Morse, Stephen A; Murch, Randall S; Sajantila, Antti; Schmedes, Sarah E; Ternus, Krista L; Turner, Stephen D; Minot, Samuel

    2014-01-01

    High throughput sequencing (HTS) generates large amounts of high quality sequence data for microbial genomics. The value of HTS for microbial forensics is the speed at which evidence can be collected and the power to characterize microbial-related evidence to solve biocrimes and bioterrorist events. As HTS technologies continue to improve, they provide increasingly powerful sets of tools to support the entire field of microbial forensics. Accurate, credible results allow analysis and interpretation, significantly influencing the course and/or focus of an investigation, and can impact the response of the government to an attack having individual, political, economic or military consequences. Interpretation of the results of microbial forensic analyses relies on understanding the performance and limitations of HTS methods, including analytical processes, assays and data interpretation. The utility of HTS must be defined carefully within established operating conditions and tolerances. Validation is essential in the development and implementation of microbial forensics methods used for formulating investigative leads attribution. HTS strategies vary, requiring guiding principles for HTS system validation. Three initial aspects of HTS, irrespective of chemistry, instrumentation or software are: 1) sample preparation, 2) sequencing, and 3) data analysis. Criteria that should be considered for HTS validation for microbial forensics are presented here. Validation should be defined in terms of specific application and the criteria described here comprise a foundation for investigators to establish, validate and implement HTS as a tool in microbial forensics, enhancing public safety and national security. PMID:25101166

  17. Analysis of XXI Century Disasters in the National Geophysical Data Center Historical Natural Hazard Event Databases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunbar, P. K.; McCullough, H. L.

    2011-12-01

    The National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC) maintains a global historical event database of tsunamis, significant earthquakes, and significant volcanic eruptions. The database includes all tsunami events, regardless of intensity, as well as earthquakes and volcanic eruptions that caused fatalities, moderate damage, or generated a tsunami. Event date, time, location, magnitude of the phenomenon, and socio-economic information are included in the database. Analysis of the NGDC event database reveals that the 21st century began with earthquakes in Gujarat, India (magnitude 7.7, 2001) and Bam, Iran (magnitude 6.6, 2003) that killed over 20,000 and 31,000 people, respectively. These numbers were dwarfed by the numbers of earthquake deaths in Pakistan (magnitude 7.6, 2005-86,000 deaths), Wenchuan, China (magnitude 7.9, 2008-87,652 deaths), and Haiti (magnitude 7.0, 2010-222,000 deaths). The Haiti event also ranks among the top ten most fatal earthquakes. The 21st century has observed the most fatal tsunami in recorded history-the 2004 magnitude 9.1 Sumatra earthquake and tsunami that caused over 227,000 deaths and 10 billion damage in 14 countries. Six years later, the 2011 Tohoku, Japan earthquake and tsunami, although not the most fatal (15,000 deaths and 5,000 missing), could cost Japan's government in excess of 300 billion-the most expensive tsunami in history. Volcanic eruptions can cause disruptions and economic impact to the airline industry, but due to their remote locations, fatalities and direct economic effects are uncommon. Despite this fact, the second most expensive eruption in recorded history occurred in the 21st century-the 2010 Merapi, Indonesia volcanic eruption that resulted in 324 deaths, 427 injuries, and $600 million in damage. NGDC integrates all natural hazard event datasets into one search interface. Users can find fatal tsunamis generated by earthquakes or volcanic eruptions. The user can then link to information about the related runup observations (e.g. maximum wave height) and the source earthquake or volcano. If available, damage photographs and plots of water level data can also be viewed. The data are accessible online via tables, reports, and a new state-of-the-art interactive map viewer. These data and access capabilities help coastal communities assess their risks, identify hazards, and promote public awareness of tsunamis and earthquakes.

  18. Usefulness of Forensic Dental Symbols© and Dental Encoder© database in forensic odontology.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Chicón, Jesús; Valenzuela, Aurora

    2012-01-01

    A new universal graphic dental system, Forensic Dental Symbols(©), has been created to provide precision in the construction of dental records, improve standardization, and increase efficiency in dental identification procedures. Two hundred and thirty-four different graphic symbols representing the most frequent clinical status for each tooth were designed. Symbols can be then converted to a typographic font and then are ready to use in any computer. For the appropriate use, manipulation, and storage of dental information generated by the Forensic Dental Symbols(©), Dental Encoder(©) database has been created. The database contains all the information required by INTERPOL Disaster Victim Identification (DVI)-dental-forms. To explore the possibilities that Dental Encoder(©) offers, an antemortem dental database from a Spanish population of 3920 military personnel had been constructed. Data generated by Dental Encoder(©) were classified into sex and age groups. The program can perform an automatic search of the database for cases that match a selected clinical status presented in a single tooth or a combination of situations for several teeth. Moreover, Dental Encoder(©) allows information to be printed on INTERPOL DVI-dental-forms, or the inclusion of any completed form into any document, technical report, or identification of dental report. PMID:22074597

  19. An introduction to computer forensics.

    PubMed

    Furneaux, Nick

    2006-07-01

    This paper provides an introduction to the discipline of Computer Forensics. With computers being involved in an increasing number, and type, of crimes the trace data left on electronic media can play a vital part in the legal process. To ensure acceptance by the courts, accepted processes and procedures have to be adopted and demonstrated which are not dissimilar to the issues surrounding traditional forensic investigations. This paper provides a straightforward overview of the three steps involved in the examination of digital media: Acquisition of data. Investigation of evidence. Reporting and presentation of evidence. Although many of the traditional readers of Medicine, Science and the Law are those involved in the biological aspects of forensics, I believe that both disciplines can learn from each other, with electronic evidence being more readily sought and considered by the legal community and the long, tried and tested scientific methods of the forensic community being shared and adopted by the computer forensic world. PMID:16909643

  20. Bio-forensics

    SciTech Connect

    Trewhella, J.

    2004-01-01

    Bioforensics presents significant technical challenges. Determining if an outbreak is natural or not, and then providing evidence to trace an outbreak to its origin is very complex. Los Alamos scientists pioneered research and development that has generated leading edge strain identification methods based on sequence data. Molecular characterization of environmental background samples enable development of highly specific pathogen signatures. Economic impacts of not knowing the relationships at the molecular level Many different kinds of data are needed for DNA-based bio-forensics.