This Week in Forensic Science

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!


This Week in Forensic Science



Killer Sees DNA Composite Sketch and Interrupts Church Service to Confess (Crime Online – 11/18/2017)

  • According to KTAB, the Brown County Sheriff’s Office authorized DNA found at the scene of the crime to be used in creating a composite sketch. That image was then released to the public and is being credited with convincing 21-year-old Ryan Riggs to admit to the crime in front of a church congregation this week.


How a DNA Revolution has Decoded the Origins of our Humanity (The Guardian – 11/18/2017)

  • Mapping the genomes of our ancestors has allowed scientists to uncover secrets and discover new mysteries in our evolution


Can Police Legally Obtain Your DNA from 23and Me and Ancestry? (WPXI – 11/18/2017)


Tiger Bones? Lion Bones? An Almost Extinct Cycad? On-the-Spot DNA Checks at Ports of Entry (Phys Org – 11/20/2017)

  • On Monday November 20, 2017, the international Barcode of Life (iBOL) project presented its LAB-IN-A-BOX portable DNA barcoding kit, which makes rapid species identification possible for port of entry officials within a few hours.


Many Bosnian War Victims Still Unidentified (Forensic Magazine – 11/20/2017)

  • Forensic anthropologist Dragana Vucetic spends her working hours in a forensic facility in the northern town of Tuzla collecting DNA samples from the bones of people killed in eastern Bosnia during the war, including in the notorious 1995 Srebrenica massacre, and reassembling their skeletal remains.

New Guides for Judges Explain Science Behind DNA Evidence (Times and Star – 11/22/2017)

  • Easy-to-understand guides explaining the science behind identifying suspects by their DNA and walk are to be launched for judges.


Innocence Project Receives Grant for DNA Testing (Illinois Times – 11/22/2017)

  • It was recently announced that the Illinois Innocence Project (IIP) will receive a $641,000 federal grant, part of a United States Department of Justice Bloodsworth grant. The grant is named in honor of Kirk Bloodsworth, who was exonerated by DNA evidence in 1993 after being sentenced to the death penalty, the first such case to have happened in Illinois.


Local Pennsylvania Police Use Rapid DNA Hit for First Time, Nabbing Alleged Killer at Hospital (Forensic Magazine – 11/22/2017)

  • Rapid DNA, a quickly-spreading technology that got a boost with federal legislation this summer, was what allowed the quick resolution of the murder of 35-year-old Rhyhiem Hodge on Nov. 12 in Carlisle Borough, Pennsylvania, according to the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office.


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