Criminal Investigations, DNA & Forensic Science

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DNA in the Courts DNA Green River Case
Forensic Associations Unsolved Crimes

In 1985, in England, Alec Jeffreys, discovered each human has unique DNA, with the exception of identical twins. DNA is found in white blood cells; blood, skin, saliva, semen, and hair follicles. In 1992, after the National Research Council said that DNA testing was a reliable method to identify criminal suspects, the technology rapidly entered the mainstream court system. Dolan DNA Learning Center

Federal law enforcement and prosecutors have received a mandate from the U.S. Department of Justice to use DNA identification whenever possible in investigating and prosecuting federal crimes.

Portrait in DNA: Can forensic analysis yield police-style sketches of suspects? Forensic profiling is moving toward the ability to create a police-artist-style sketch of an unknown person by reading traits inscribed in the genome.

Blood stain analysis can assist in developing a postmortem interval (time of death) through forensic entomology, medical examiner findings, and analysis of environmental conditions.

Art and Science of Criminal Investigation --Forensic Science and CSI

What Every Law Enforcement Officer Should Know About DNA Evidence -- Investigators with fundamental knowledge of how to identify, preserve and collect DNA evidence properly can solve cases in ways previously seen only on television.

Interpol Forensics -- Forensic expertise and the exchange of forensic data is vital to international investigations.

The case for innocence -- DNA can establish with near certainty who did or didn't commit a crime. Why, then, do inmates remain in prison despite DNA evidence which exonerates them?

What Jennifer Saw: An examination of false eyewitness identification in crimes and how DNA evidence is setting the innocent free.

December 2000, after 14 years on Florida's death row, Frank Lee Smith was cleared of the rape and murder of Shandra Whitehead, 8 years old, as a result of DNA testing unavailable when he was convicted. Ten months before he was proven innocent, he died of cancer in prison, steps away from Florida's electric chair.

The truth is that polygraphs lie -- The Ford Heights Four, as they became known, were convicted for brutal slayings, and two defendants were sentenced to death. But in 1996, DNA evidence exonerated all four. They had spent 18 years behind bars, partly because the lie detector lied.

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