Posts Tagged ‘Corpse Identification’


November 19, 2008

Taphonomy is the fascinating science of the study of human remains after death. It has been used both as an anthropological sense such as “the Ice Man” from 5300 years ago and King Tut’s remains from 1343 BC. It is also useful as a forensic tool. Anthropologists, archaeologists, botanists, naturalists and climatologists are all team players involved in the process. The key questions that anthropologists must answer are: a. Are the bones from an animal or a human? b. If human, what are the approximate age, race, gender, and stature of the individual? c. Have scavenging animals disarticulated the body or damaged bones? d. If there are defects in the body assemblage, were they caused by premortem or postmortem events? e. What effects have plants, animals, weather, and climate had on the body over time? References Lynch, Virginia A. and Duval, Janet Barber. (2006). Forensic Nursing. St. Louis: Elsevier Mosby

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Idenification of an Individual

September 25, 2008

Identification of an Individual;
Forensic Medicine http://www.forensic Aurthor ; Joseph I. Cohn M.D. Pathologist. General Information for Individuals.
Posted: Dec. 22 2007,15:43

This information was informative and possibly all of us have seen forms of this identification on movies and television. I watched a forensic medicine show that showed how one homeless person was identified. The body was almost mummified with no identification no teeth. No one around that could identify the body. The forensic physician took one of the mummified fingertips and injected it with saline. After the tip was inflated with saline he could roll a fingerprint and found the unidentified homeless persons’ name.
So many wonderful skills have been developed to help identify people. Another skill is the forensic facial reconstruction that can reconstruct a face from even broken skulls.
Many other identification methods have improved with computers. Now 2D and 3D reconstruction of the skull using computers can approximate the person found with a few facial bones and again the skull.
Forensic medicine is leaping forward to help humanity understand the past and find people who have been lost.


Age Progression Training, comment

November 27, 2007

Click on the link to right of the main page of this blog. The title of the link is “Online Forensic Anthropology/Police Science Course at Canyon College.” You will see the class which police officers take to learn age progression imaging. The class is suitable for officers learning (for the first time) about police drawings on the computer. It is also suitable for those gaining experience after vendor instructions. And it is suitable for officers wanting advanced computer age progression techniques. Students eligible to take Forensic Anthropology include police officers, nurses, forensic nurses, anthropologists, physicians, and others. This online class allows each student to learn at his or her own pace.

Law enforcement agencies can establish an account for rapid composite drawing, police sketch, and facial reconstruction services. The final product, which is an police composite is sent to the agency via the Internet. Secure transmission is available. This frees the time of law enforcement officers and frees the resources of agencies.

For more information, you may also click on the link “Email Me With Topic Suggestions.” This is also found on the right side of the main blog page.

Our police department needs help with making age progression pictures and photos on a computer. We recently purchased facial reconstruction software. The vendor gave us training. However, we need more time to learn to use the software. Our police officers cannot all learn at the same time.

The police department in the city next to ours wants to purchase the same software in January. The department wants to start training their officers in January 2008 to make police sketches and police drawings on the computer. They can use your help also because they handle a lot of cases of missing children.


Dead Can Still Tell

March 27, 2007

While reading an article in The Florida Times Union, a local newspaper here in Jacksonville, Florida, I came upon this interesting article. This article in detail explains on how the medical examiners office usually identifies a body. Step 1- Friends and Family: About 90 percent of all bodies are identified using friends and family to look at the body or person. If the facial features have been destroyed or damages, other distinguishing marks such as tattoos are used or birthmarks. Step 2- Fingerprints: Although the database for fingerprints is not unlimited, the technique is usually successful in identifying some bodies. Some problems such as burn victims, bodies washed ashore can make fingerprinting hard to determine. Step 3- Dental Records: Just like a snowflake, no two mouths are alike, and once the records are available, comparing teeth is an easy process. The problem is not everyone goes to the dentist like they should. Also, investigators need to have ah idea of who they are looking for to compare records, because there is no dental database. Step 4- Medical Records: Certain medical evidence such as bone fractures, pacemakers, AICD’s, scars, or any previous surgeries can be used for identification. Just like dental records, investigators need some idea of what and whom they are comparing. Step 5- DNA: Medical examiners typically exhaust all other resources before DNA is tested for identification. DNA tests can be expensive and take a good amount of time. Not everyone’s DNA is available for comparison. Medical examiners’ offices still keep several DNA samples on file in case of future investigations or for reference. Step 6- Forensic anthropologist: If a body is very decomposed and all that is left is skeletal remains, an anthropologist can be involved to examine the bone structure to give clues about race, gender and age of the deceased body in question.


Ways of identifying a body

March 2, 2007

I read in the news the other day that authorities had found a body and the only way they could identify it was from the man’s artificial knee. Law enforcement found a serial number on the knee and was able to identify the man with this serial number. The man had a total knee replacement in 2001 and they found the serial number on it. I thought this was a real nifty way of identifying someone. What are your thoughts?


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