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Trace Evidence


The lecture I went to on Tuesday night was Dr Louisse Marsh of LCG Forensics, who was talking on Trace Evidence in Forensic Science (a cellular pathology educational session run by the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre).

To be honest, there was little that was new to me (having read several lay books on the topic as well as reading and watching countless stories that centre on forensic science) but it was interesting to see the illustrated examples she gave. Top tips for the would-be criminal include wearing new shoes (older shoes are increasingly likely to pick up distinctive wear and damage patterns) and avoiding breaking any glass (which is likely to leave them covered with microscopic evidence suggesting they may have been at the scene of the crime) or, of course, not to commit the crime in the first place.

The most interesting insight for me was that, while the “CSI” set up, with investigators visiting the scene and following the case all the way through scientific tests and presentation of legal statements, is not the way things are done in the UK (police scene of crime officers gather evidence before sending it to forensic labs) it is more common in the USA, although perhaps without some of the hi-tech tools and glamorous hairstyles!

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