Seth Augenstein
Senior Science Writer

Seth Augenstein is a reporter for Forensic and Laboratory Equipment magazines. He spent a decade as a reporter at New Jersey newspapers, most recently at The Star-Ledger. He has interviewed people at crime scenes, in prisons, from hospital bedsides, within operating rooms, inside laboratories, standing in flood waters, cringing outside four-alarm fires, and in many dirty kitchens and quiet living rooms. He has won numerous state press association awards for his work. He is also a fiction writer.

A Massachusetts man who was behind bars for more than 30 years based on the flawed FBI analysis of a single hair has become the first person to have his...
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10.23.2017
12:12pm
Three years of the most serious criminal investigations in Connecticut show that forensic analysis of biological evidence, including DNA, has skyrocketed.
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10.20.2017
12:36pm
Statistics over the last decade point to a routine, if grim, reality: the rate of mass killings has remained completely steady. At the same time, it remains...
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10.19.2017
12:59pm
A 15-year-old walked out of her family’s Chicago home in the middle of the night two weeks ago. Kayleigh Green left behind her cellphone charger and case, and...
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10.18.2017
1:14pm
In Ohio, the rate of “hits” in CODIS from tested rape kits is higher than just about any other state. But a CODIS hit doesn’t mean detectives are immediately...
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10.17.2017
1:17pm
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Familial searching, partial matching and lineage searches are in use in many states, and continue to gain ground, according to a series of papers produced for...
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10.16.2017
1:29pm
A new study by two statisticians at the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) contends likelihood ratios should not be used in American...
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10.13.2017
11:51am
The image of a woman’s face, and a clip of her saying “you can’t play with this” in Vietnamese, were pulled from a child porn video. Now the hunt is on for “...
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10.12.2017
12:53pm
Covert security tests of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s two campuses revealed potentially dangerous gaps, according to a new federal...
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10.12.2017
10:38am
The California appellate court has ordered convicted murderer Florencio Jose Dominguez to be re-tried, or released—since the DNA mixture evidence presented at...
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10.11.2017
1:28pm
Battelle and its scientists unveiled the results of the first wide forensic science trials of next-generation DNA sequencing last week at the International...
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10.10.2017
12:29pm
About 1,000 human skulls collected from Africa during the era of colonialism will be investigated by German antiquities authorities. The “menschliche Uberreste...
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10.9.2017
11:15am
At the three-year mark the National Institute of Standards and Technology is seeking input on its key initiative in establishing standards in forensic science...
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10.6.2017
4:21pm
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A major forensic partnership between two Florida institutions was announced Thursday, with promises of making a bigger impact beyond the Sunshine State....
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10.6.2017
12:31pm
DNA mixtures comparison was a major topic of presentations yesterday at the annual International Symposium for Human Identification. The forensic analysis of...
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10.5.2017
1:19pm
Seven years of British court appeals shows that evidence presented at trial—and not necessarily new evidence presented afterward—drove several hundred...
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10.4.2017
12:20pm
Forensic analysis of the dozens of weapons at the Las Vegas massacre crime scene, and in the attacker’s home, could benefit from the use of a “revolutionary”...
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10.3.2017
1:20pm
A convicted rapist who was serving time in prison when his DNA was pulled from rape kits from two violent attacks from a decade earlier will stay behind bars...
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10.2.2017
12:51pm
Presentations at the annual International Symposium for Human Identification (ISHI) next week in Seattle will focus on the advent of Rapid DNA, genetic...
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9.29.2017
12:58pm
Since his 1990 conviction on two first-degree counts of murder, Jens Soering has been behind bars. But now a sitting Virginia sheriff and a group of forensic...
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9.28.2017
1:30pm
The American Association for the Advancement of Science announced a massive reevaluation of the forensic sciences two years ago. But after two reports this...
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9.27.2017
10:51am
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A Houston woman was raped in her apartment in 2011. Her rape kit revealed the DNA of her attacker—but only five years later, in 2016, as a rape kit backlog...
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9.26.2017
12:59pm
A new report by a team of forensic experts at the federal Argentine Gendarmie says that Argentinian prosecutor Alberto Nisman was drugged, beaten, subdued and...
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9.25.2017
1:03pm
Alcohol is a major driver in American homicide. In about half of all U.S. homicides, either victim or perpetrator (or both) are under the influence at the time...
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9.22.2017
12:14pm
An algorithm developed by a team of scientists from Malaysia attempts to clear up pictures for quantitative comparisons of firearms and toolmark evidence, as...
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9.21.2017
1:14pm
Not all DNA swabs are equal—but that may have more to do with the hand guiding them than the material at the tip, according to a new series of tests by...
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9.20.2017
12:51pm
The latest DNA technology, investigative persistence and a handwritten confession have led to the killer and rapist responsible for a brutal slaying, 25 years...
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9.19.2017
11:04am
The Department of Justice will roll back some Obama-era oversight on local police departments, according to an announcement on Friday. The Collaborative Reform...
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9.18.2017
11:57am
"Decades of overstatement of latent print examiners” has led to unrealistically high expectations of judges and juries when it comes to the forensic...
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9.15.2017
12:16pm
A man imprisoned for 16 years for a double murder is today free, after a fifth murder trial found him not guilty. Selwyn Days had been arrested and convicted...
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9.14.2017
12:47pm
A trail of blood ultimately connected the dots for Italian investigators—it showed several minutes of the deceased attempting to cover up the scene of a self-...
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9.13.2017
11:57am
A killer who was found guilty of killing two women in the 1990s could be tied to at least one of the victims at the infamous Gilgo Beach dumping site on Long...
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9.12.2017
4:52pm
In 2010, Lawrence David Butterfield was arrested and charged with stabbing his roommate to death. Voices had told him to kill, he told the arresting officer....
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9.12.2017
12:50pm
A mass grave holds the remains of 400 children who died in an orphanage run by Catholic nuns in Scotland over the course of a century, according to a new...
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9.11.2017
12:36pm
The Houston Forensic Science Center braced for Hurricane Harvey two weeks ago. Two hundred staff members pitched in, some lugging 500 pounds of dry ice in case...
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9.8.2017
2:22pm
A California state parole panel recommended the release of Leslie Van Houten, the youngest “Manson Family” member convicted in the infamous 1969 murder spree,...
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9.7.2017
12:33pm
The execution-style killing of James Ricks caught up to James Leon Clay, now 70, in the most mundane of ways: he couldn’t stop talking about it.
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9.6.2017
4:50pm
A pilot program partnering the FBI and the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, or NamUs, began in February with a massive backlog of prints which...
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9.5.2017
4:40pm
The automated license plate reader (ALPR) data collected from millions in Los Angeles County is public information, the California Supreme Court ruled this...
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9.1.2017
12:10pm