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Forensic Magazine

Mystery Woman with Burned Fingerprints Vexes Officials

August 8, 2014 10:36 am | Comments

A police investigation based in Ohio, and spanning at least three states, wants to determine why a woman would burn off her fingerprints. Sheriff's offices in Maine, Southwest Florida and Ohio are trying to find the true identity of a woman going by Julia Wadsworth.


Fingerprints Found in Unusual Place

August 8, 2014 10:31 am | Comments

A man accused of breaking into more than a dozen units at a storage facility left behind fingerprints in an unusual place, according to Hollywood Park police. Fernando Antu, 28, was taken into custody earlier this week. An arrest affidavit stated that a sergeant with the Hollywood Park Police Department found a man inside a closed storage facility around 1 a.m. Monday.


CRAIC Technologies Announces Updated Website

August 8, 2014 10:20 am | Comments

CRAIC Technologies is pleased to announce several updates to its website at  These include a substantial amount of detailed technical information on both microscopy and microspectroscopy in the Technical Support section. 


A Guide to Preparing Court Testimony for Latent Print Examiners

August 8, 2014 10:12 am | Comments

In the last five years latent print analysis has been challenged as a forensic science in and outside of the courtroom. While research into the reliability of latent print analysis is ongoing, NIJ’s Forensic Technology Center of Excellence is hosting a new online course to better prepare latent print examiners for their court testimony.  


Justices Refuse To Make Forensic Lab Analysts Testify

August 7, 2014 10:40 am | Comments

The New Jersey Supreme Court has refused to adopt a rule requiring that laboratory analysts be available for cross-examination at trial. A majority of the court said requiring every analyst who was involved in the testing to be available for questioning by the defense was not required by the Sixth Amendment’s confrontation clause and that doing so would create “practical drawbacks that range from moderate to severe.”


Judge Allows More DNA Testing

August 7, 2014 10:26 am | Comments

A motion for DNA testing filed by convicted killer Larry Ray Swearingen was granted Monday by 9th state District Court Judge Kelly Case. Swearingen is on death row awaiting an execution date, but Case granted the inmate’s request for testing of seven categories of evidence to determine whether any DNA was left on items at the time of the 1998 capital murder of Montgomery College student Melissa Trotter.


Bill Would Allow Warrants to Be Issued by Telephone

August 7, 2014 10:18 am | Comments

Tennessee prosecutors want to move the way search warrants are issued out of the 20th century. At issue is a bill that would allow a magistrate or judge to issue a search warrant by telephone or “other reliable electronic means.”     

To say that developments in “Rapid DNA” have been progressing quickly is an understatement. From a front page USA Today article headline reading “Rapid DNA Test Could Transform Crime Fight”, to its first use in a criminal prosecution and, most importantly

Rapid DNA Helps Make Arrest

August 7, 2014 10:15 am | Comments

Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott says a new DNA technology tool helped his department make an arrest in an attempted murder case. Lott spoke Wednesday about the investigation, which he says was solved in part with the agency's recently acquired rapid DNA system.


Crime Lab Scandal Could Taint Many Cases

August 6, 2014 10:45 am | Comments

Drugs disappearing in dozens of cases are only one piece of a scandal that could shake South Florida law enforcement to its core. Investigations continue into the full breadth of the problems at the Broward Crime Lab.           


Smart Glass Could Analyze DNA

August 6, 2014 10:37 am | Comments

Recently, Corning Incorporated, together with Polytechnique Montreal, is developing a type of smart glass mainly used as the touchscreen of the smartphone, which can detect people's physical condition and can even analyze the user's DNA through reading the spit on the surface of the smart glass. Besides, this smart glass can also detect the composition of the atmosphere. 

With new DNA evidence in hand, a divided Florida Supreme Court overturned the death sentence and conviction of a man found guilty nearly three decades ago of strangling a woman in Hernando County, Fla.

Man Cleared by DNA Evidence Sues Police

August 6, 2014 10:31 am | Comments

A Long Island man who spent nearly 18 years in prison before his conviction for killing his wife in 1994 was overturned by new DNA evidence has filed state and federal lawsuits against the Vermont police and prosecutors who built the case.

A D.C. Superior Court judge has decided that DNA evidence exonerates a man who spent 26 years in prison for the 1982 rape and murder of a Washington woman.

Authorities Make an Arrest Two Decades After Killings

August 6, 2014 10:26 am | Comments

Two decades later, forensic work by the Suffolk County Police Department, along with changes to DNA collection procedures, have brought some long-delayed relief to family and friends: John Bittrolff, 48, a carpenter and married father of two from nearby Manorville, was arrested last month on charges of murdering Ms. McNamee and Ms. Tangredi.


Short-cut Analysis Could Cut Rape Kit Backlog

August 5, 2014 10:44 am | Comments

There may be a shortcut in rape investigations that would capture valuable DNA evidence while cutting costs and getting Utah law enforcement agencies out of the bind of backlogged forensic evidence in rape cases. It looks to be one of the most significant developments to come out of "passionate" discussions between members of an ad hoc group seeking solutions to unanalyzed rape kits.


Long Wait For DNA Testing Hearing

August 5, 2014 10:38 am | Comments

Fifteen months is a long time to wait for a hearing date on whether forensic testing should be conducted on evidence, say lawyers for a Bloomington man serving life in prison for a murder he claims he did not commit. Advocates for Jamie Snow say they are hopeful the appointment of a new judge in the Eighth Judicial Circuit will mean progress in Snow's efforts to argue his innocence.


Appellate Court Upholds Conviction in Burglary DNA Case

August 5, 2014 10:34 am | Comments

Maryland's second highest court has upheld the conviction of a Glen Burnie man who was charged with a burglary based on a DNA sample he gave in an unrelated case. George Varriale appealed his conviction saying investigators exceeded the bounds of his consent.   



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