No one has hours to scour the papers to keep up with the latest news, so we’ve curated the top news stories in the field of Forensic Science for this week. Here’s what you need to know to get out the door!
Bereaved families are discouraged by police and other personnel from viewing the images associated with the death of their loved one. Relatives applying for access to the material often find themselves making repeated requests but authorities will routinely refuse them on the grounds that the images will cause them distress.
Today, the Justice Department recommends that all rape kits associated with a reported crime be submitted for DNA analysis. But up until just last year, there were no national requirements or guidelines on what to do with them. Most states had no laws dictating which kits should be tested, meaningevery police department could have its own rules about what evidence to test, keep or throw away.
Fueled by advances in analyzing DNA from the bones of ancient humans, scientists have dramatically expanded the number of samples studied – revealing vast and surprising migrations and genetic mixing of populations in our prehistoric past.
The Department of Justice is proceeding with a series of initiatives to improve the empirical foundations of forensic sciences, Rosenstein told the AAFS membership in the biggest meeting of the week-long conference in Seattle.
In the last eight years, the field of ancient DNA research has expanded from just one ancient human genome to more than 1,300. The latest 625 of those genomes debut Feb. 21 in Nature, including the largest study of ancient DNA to date.