Matching Items (23)

134377-Thumbnail Image.png

The Effects of Serial Killers on FBI Policies & Investigations By: Joseph Muzupappa

Description

Serial killers have had a profound impact on the United States' most powerful law enforcement agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Through a brief history of the FBI, the birth

Serial killers have had a profound impact on the United States' most powerful law enforcement agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Through a brief history of the FBI, the birth of the Behavioral Analysis Unit is highlighted and criminal profiling is realized as a tool to apprehend these serial killers. Four serial killer cases are presented as important representations to illustrate the contributions that were made to the FBI's investigatory procedure. As serial killings make up only one percent of the murders in the U.S. each year, it is still evident that these cases have had a profound impact on the U.S.'s top law enforcement agency. The FBI has been able to react to each case more effectively than the last. Constant learning on the job, as each impactful case happens within a short time span from the last, has been a necessity for investigators and has been a prime strength of the FBI. There is no way to tell when an individual will begin to commit serial murder, so while the FBI's methods are not perfect, the Bureau has been able to respond in full to each challenge a new serial killer case has presented and arrest the guilty party. Through an analysis of the criminal profile, stereotypes attributed to serial killers, and the application of forensic evidence to serial killer investigations, the impact of the investigations of these cases by the FBI is examined. A real world application of the FBI's recommended procedure for a serial killer investigation is spotlighted and analyzed to determine its practicality in modern-day investigations.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05

134254-Thumbnail Image.png

Unification and Reorganization of the United States Medical Examiner and Coroner Systems

Description

In 2009 the National Academy of Sciences issued a publication outlining current issues in forensic science as well as key recommendations to fix relevant problems in fields ranging from comparative

In 2009 the National Academy of Sciences issued a publication outlining current issues in forensic science as well as key recommendations to fix relevant problems in fields ranging from comparative forensics to the death investigation system itself. These relevant problems stem partially from a lack of a unification amongst nationwide standards and practices. A lack of resources, funding, and qualified personnel has halted any real change in death investigation.1 Rather than allow the disparate, varied, and sometimes less qualified role of the Coroner to persist in tandem with a Medical Examiner System, it is recommended that the United States suspend the Coroner System in its entirety to allow for a nationwide Medical Examiner System as the new sole standard in death investigation. This transition is both necessary and feasible. Presently, there are a number of challenges facing the proposed unification of the medicolegal death investigation field to include funding; addressing medical school needs; facilities in both rural and populated communities; and overarching legislative issues connected to such a large endeavor. This recommendation proposes solutions to establish a unified Medical Examiner System. This proposal is based on the state of New Mexico's death investigation system and thus can integrate forensic pathology into the medical education while utilizing the knowledge of practicing forensic pathologists where Medical Examiner Systems can fuse with medical schools. Milestones will be achieved in stages over a 15 year time frame as the United States makes the transition to a unified centralized Medical Examiner System.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05

133871-Thumbnail Image.png

Calculative Thought with a Meditative Purpose: Forensic Science and Hermeneutic Thought

Description

As human beings we go through the world interpreting – seeing a situation, gathering context, and making a decision on the meaning of the thing we just experienced. The philosopher

As human beings we go through the world interpreting – seeing a situation, gathering context, and making a decision on the meaning of the thing we just experienced. The philosopher Martin Heidegger calls this way of being hermeneutics – a practice of interpretation. This method of approach does not ignore a person’s bias, instead bias is highlighted, understood, and possibly even overcome. In the following pages the basic definition and process of hermeneutics will be discussed. Leading into the difference between calculative and meditative thought – scientific and philosophical – in order to later discuss the possibility and need to merge the two in the field of Forensic Science. Forensic Scientist uses hermeneutic thought by way of merging calculative and meditative thinking. In order to support this claim artistic renderings of ‘the pieces of an unknowable whole’ were created to literally illustrate this truth.
Forensic science is tasked with using calculative thinking with scientifically accepted methods of measurement and detection as well as the meditative task of applying their data to messy, real-world events. In order to support my supposition of forensic scientists being hermeneutical workers, three paintings were created. The three paintings can be considered a tryptic of sorts due to the context in which they are presented: forensic science. They each tell a story that is weaved within each other – spatter indicating violence long past, the empty void of a body gone, and the cold decomposition of a victim found. It is the forensic scientist that must interpret each piece separately and is tasked with finding how and why they are put together. The hermeneutical work of the forensic scientist interpreting a crime scene uses the same methods as one who interprets text. A forensic scientist opens possibilities of meaning in the same way that Martin Heidegger’s hermeneutic circle does. There is interplay between the interpreter (the forensic scientist) and the text (the crime scene), questions are formed (what happened here?) and responses are made (evidence found at the scene). This question and response outlook is what make the forensic scientist a hermeneutic thinker.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018-05

135967-Thumbnail Image.png

Child Abuse and Neglect Handbook: Victim Identification for School Aged Children

Description

Child abuse is a hard topic to talk about, and even harder to diagnose without proper training. Though there is a list of general characteristics that child abuse victim's exhibit,

Child abuse is a hard topic to talk about, and even harder to diagnose without proper training. Though there is a list of general characteristics that child abuse victim's exhibit, it could be difficult to diagnose because everyone reacts to maltreatment differently. Teachers are required by law to report any case where they believe a child is in an abusive environment. Unfortunately, teachers are given the tools to report the abuse, but they lack the knowledge of what to look for. The results are two fold; one is there is an overflow of false reporting, and two, the children who do not having obvious symptoms go unnoticed. This project aims to bridge the gap between these two extremes. It will lower the frequency of false reporting while increasing the chance that a child in need will be helped. The best way to achieve this is through education. The purpose of the study is to create an informational manual for teachers at the kindergarten and elementary level on how to identify child abuse and neglect victims. It will outline the behavioral and physical symptoms of physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect. It will also highlight the importance of realizing that not all maltreatment victims react the same to abuse. It will then follow into advice on how to approach the situation and what questions to ask. The primary form of research was primary observation by volunteering at the Mesa Child Crisis Center (with IRB approval). Interviews were conducted with Child Crisis Center workers, child behavioral psychologists, and Special Victims Unit detectives. The goal of this research is to help teachers better identify children that are at risk of abuse
eglect, and to understand the theory behind their behavior. In the end, teachers will be more informed on the topic so they can better help their students and create a safe environment for them, and be more confident in reporting.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015-12

131520-Thumbnail Image.png

Lab Protocol in Forensic Chemistry: Introduction to Arson Analysis

Description

A lab protocol was created in order to introduce arson evidence analysis to students. The procedures dictate a thorough introduction from evidence handling procedures to analysis of common accelerant mass

A lab protocol was created in order to introduce arson evidence analysis to students. The procedures dictate a thorough introduction from evidence handling procedures to analysis of common accelerant mass spectrum. The objectives of the lab protocol included classifying and describing various pieces of arson evidence and common accelerants as well as synthesizing information about accelerant composition to interpret GC-MS data output. This would allow the student to experience first-hand what the subsection of arson analysis has to offer in the field of forensic science which could help the student decide on more specialties to study later on. I was unable to run the lab protocol in a laboratory setting, therefore in the future I want to use the lab protocol and receive feedback in order to improve the protocol so the student is receiving the best possible learning outcomes. The experience of creating a lab protocol in forensic science gave myself a greater understanding of what goes on behind an academic learning procedure and more insight on arson evidence analysis.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

131548-Thumbnail Image.png

Establishing A Relationship Between Forensic Science and Diné Philosophy

Description

The purpose of this creative project was to create a forensic science program that accommodated Diné Philosophy and Culture. Indigenous representation is a key factor in promoting the advancement of

The purpose of this creative project was to create a forensic science program that accommodated Diné Philosophy and Culture. Indigenous representation is a key factor in promoting the advancement of the native ways of life. This thesis provides a culturally aware program that assists students to learn about taboo fields within the restrictions of the cultural teachings and traditions. This thesis developed a week-long forensics program targeted to Navajo middle school students with the cultural restriction in mind. During this process, the most difficult was integrating not only the taboos but also the foundations. At the end of this project, the most significant way to create an outreach program for Navajo students is by utilizing the Diné philosophy teaching models. This project is important because to create an effective science community there has to be equal representation for it to grow.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

131248-Thumbnail Image.png

The Beauty of BlueStar®

Description

Chemiluminescent reagents, such as BlueStar® forensic reagent, are used during crime scene investigations to detect latent bloodstains as they react with the iron in blood to produce bright chemiluminescence. There

Chemiluminescent reagents, such as BlueStar® forensic reagent, are used during crime scene investigations to detect latent bloodstains as they react with the iron in blood to produce bright chemiluminescence. There are several substances that cause false positives with BlueStar® reagent, including plant peroxidases and certain metal compounds. These false positive substances are commonly seen in cosmetic products. The widespread availability and popularity of cosmetics makes it possible that false positive substances may be encountered at crime scenes and could potentially interfere with investigations. The cosmetic products chosen for this study included two of the following types of products at different price points: foundation, primer, moisturizer, cleanser, and setting powder. The ten cosmetic products were tested with BlueStar® forensic reagent in two rounds of testing on multiple surface types to mimic different ways investigators may encounter the products at crime scenes. The results of the tests were overall negative as the products did not produce any chemiluminescence, indicating that the products do not cause false positives with the BlueStar® forensic reagent and are not concern for investigators. As a majority of the products contain ingredients known to cause false positives with BlueStar®, the completely negative results raised several questions. More exploration of the interaction between cosmetic products and BlueStar® reagents needs to occur in order to clarify and confirm if cosmetics pose a risk to crime scene investigators.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

133713-Thumbnail Image.png

Shark conservation and the impact of forensic science on current conservation efforts

Description

Marine conservation faces the unique challenge of trying to assess and protect species, like sharks, that have long migration tracks and are often targeted by fishing vessels in open and

Marine conservation faces the unique challenge of trying to assess and protect species, like sharks, that have long migration tracks and are often targeted by fishing vessels in open and international waters. Over the last two decades, several large predatory shark populations have been greatly depleted despite local and international organizations designed to help regulate and prevent predator removal to avoid disturbing the food web those sharks balance (Myers, Baum, Shepherd, Powers, & Peterson, 2007). Forensic science is a powerful tool that could give shark conservation efforts an edge on identifying shark species currently being targeted by unsustainable fisheries in international waters. Allowing offenders who break international conservation laws to be prosecuted for their crimes. Unfortunately, this unique and powerful tool has not been given the opportunity to be utilized as it should be. An overview of national and international agencies, organizations, and laws disclosed a strong foundation for wildlife conservation. However, current international organizations and laws that govern international waters leave much to be desired in regards to protecting shark species that are threatened due to being popular targets for fishing vessels. This paper examines the level of forensic science involvement in shark conservation efforts through a literature review, revealing a severe lack of real-life application of forensic science to marine conservation cases. Current issues that marine wildlife forensic science encounters while attempting to increase forensic capability. And finally, presenting proposals for the future, and new challenges, which aim to strengthen the relationship between forensic science and marine conservation.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018-05

133370-Thumbnail Image.png

Soil Changes from Exposure to Human Cadavers Over a One-Year Period

Description

The focus of human decomposition studies has traditionally been on how external factors affect the decomposition of a body. There is much less literature on how the decomposition of a

The focus of human decomposition studies has traditionally been on how external factors affect the decomposition of a body. There is much less literature on how the decomposition of a human cadaver affects its local ecosystem. This study attempts to address the knowledge gap in current literature regarding how the decomposition of human cadavers affects the bioavailability of essential plant nutrients (P, K, Ca, Fe, C and N) as well as toxins (As and Pb) in soil. By studying the bioavailability of plant nutrients, especially nitrogen, and toxins, this research hopes to inform new technologies and techniques for locating clandestine gravesites. The objectives of this study were twofold: 1) determine whether soils exposed to cadaveric decomposition can be visually distinguished from one another via macroscopic and microscopic observation and 2) observe general changes in nutrient and toxic element bioavailability and changes in carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios over time as well as spatially across a body. Visual analyses of soil samples, both macro- and microscopically did not show potential in distinguishing soil exposed to cadaver decomposition from unexposed soil. Relative bioavailability as well as overall bioavailable concentrations of both plant nutrients and toxins were highly elevated after 12 months. Toxins, such as As and Pb, tended to have greater bioavailable concentrations at the near-torso positions, though no consistent spatial trends between nutrient bioavailable concentrations were observed between the three individuals. Nitrogen concentrations and nitrogen isotope (δ15N) ratios show strong potential as markers of clandestine graves throughout the study period. While this research demonstrates further need to uncover what factors influence bioavailability of elements in gravesoil, it shows that the bioavailability of plant nutrients and toxins as well as δ15N ratios are greatly affected by cadaver decomposition, and emerging technologies in gravesite detection based on plant or soil changes have a solid foundation.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018-05

133284-Thumbnail Image.png

Possibility VS Practicality; A Study of the Sequential Processing of Fired Cartridge Casings

Description

There are unrealistic expectations of the forensic science discipline by the public today. More specifically about the types of evidence that can be recovered from a fired cartridge casing. The

There are unrealistic expectations of the forensic science discipline by the public today. More specifically about the types of evidence that can be recovered from a fired cartridge casing. The common misconception with the evidence that can be recovered from a cartridge casing is that all three types of evidence: DNA, latent prints, and firearms can be recovered from the same cartridge casing. However, just because some analyses are possible does not mean that they are practical. The definition of possibility is that an event can happen. However, the definition of practicality is not only that it can happen, but that the event should occur to optimize the efficiency of a given task. Through literature review of previous studies as well as experimental data, each discipline (DNA, latent prints, and firearms and toolmark analysis) were evaluated. For the experimental trials, three total experiments were carried out. Experiment one focused on the possibility aspect, so in experiment one the best conditions were simulated to receive a positive result. Experiment two focused on creating conditions that would occur at a crime scene, and experiment three refined those variables to serve as middle ground. After evaluation, each discipline was classified as possible and/or practical. These results were then used to determine practical sequential processing for a fired cartridge casing. After both experimentation and review, it was determined that the best possible sequential processing path for a cartridge casing collected at the crime scene to get the quickest information back is as follows: Firearms, DNA, Latent Prints.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018-05