Journal of Forensic Sciences (J Forensic Sci )

Publisher: Blackwell Publishing

Description

The Journal of Forensic Sciences is the official publication of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS). It is devoted to the publication of original investigations, observations, scholarly inquiries, and reviews in the various branches of the forensic sciences. These include Pathology and Biology, Toxicology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, General, Odontology, Physical Anthropology, Jurisprudence, Criminalistics, Questioned Documents, and Engineering Sciences. Similar submissions dealing with forensic-oriented aspects of the social science are also published.

  • Impact factor
    1.24
  • 5-year impact
    1.49
  • Cited half-life
    9.20
  • Immediacy index
    0.17
  • Eigenfactor
    0.01
  • Article influence
    0.41
  • Website
    Journal of Forensic Sciences website
  • Other titles
    Journal of forensic sciences (En ligne)
  • ISSN
    1556-4029
  • OCLC
    300302550
  • Material type
    Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Internet Resource, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details

Blackwell Publishing

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author cannot archive a post-print version
  • Restrictions
    • Some journals impose embargoes typically of 6 or 12 months, occasionally of 24 months
    • no listing of affected journals available as yet
  • Conditions
    • See Wiley-Blackwell entry for articles after February 2007
    • Publisher version cannot be used
    • On author or institutional or subject-based server
    • Server must be non-commercial
    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledged with set statement ("The definitive version is available at www.blackwell-synergy.com ")
    • Articles in some journals can be made Open Access on payment of additional charge
    • 'Blackwell Publishing' is an imprint of 'Wiley-Blackwell'
  • Classification
    ​ yellow

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was the correlation of selected volatile compounds emitted by decaying pig carcasses with the PMI. Selected volatiles should 1st: be reliably emitted during vertebrate decay, 2nd: be emitted at high concentrations, and 3rd: show a reproducible quantitative dynamic during the decaying process. Four pigs (Sus scrofa domesticus L.) were placed in a deciduous forest in different seasons and volatiles emitted during the decaying process were sampled. Seventeen compounds were identified and quantified by GC-MS. Electrophysiological experiments on the antenna of female Calliphora vicina and additional data of Dermestes maculans were used as an evolutionary tuned information filter to evaluate the 1st criterion. The relative quantitative emission of hexanal, nonanal, dimethyl disulfide, dimethyl trisulfide, 1-butanol, and phenol were correlated with the PMI and the observed stages of decay and the limitations of this model were discussed.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 01/2015;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In October 2009, the grave of an unknown World War I (WWI) U.S. service member was exhumed in Rembercourt-Sur-Mad Village, in the Lorraine Region of France. The skeletal remains and material evidence were accessioned into the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command's (JPAC) Central Identification Laboratory (CIL). The personnel records for the associated casualty were requested, received, and reviewed. A dental profile was present among the service member's personal information. There were multiple points of concordance between the dental records of the associated casualty, and the recovered dental remains to include eight restored teeth, 15 unrestored teeth, and three antemortem missing teeth. Distinctive restorations which compared favorably included a porcelain crown and multiple gold foil fillings. All lines of evidence (historical, material evidence/personal effects, anthropological, and dental) and the circumstances of loss compared positively with the associated casualty. On April 1, 2010, the previously unaccounted-for U.S. service member was positively identified and on June 23, 2010, was buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To better understand lightning deaths, a retrospective review of electronic records from New Mexico's Office of the Medical Investigator database was performed between 1977 and 2009 to update and assess current risk factors. Information on demographics, circumstances, autopsy, and death certificates were collected and analyzed. Fifty-four decedents were identified, ages 2-71 years old (mean 34 years old), 42 males and 12 females. Common racial/ethnic groups were non-Hispanic Whites and American Indians (together comprising 72% of all cases). Physical findings were often related to the heat carried by the electrical current including clothing alterations (29.6%) and burning of skin (53.7%). Most deaths occurred on weekend afternoons in summer months, associated with recreational activities or agricultural work, and rural locations (77.8%). Utilizing the demographic information, clustered events, and associated outdoor activities will assist in creating public awareness and provide a framework to support targeted warnings in an attempt to prevent future deaths.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A method for the identification of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) and meta-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) was developed employing capillary electrophoresis (CE) with capacitively coupled contactless conductivity detection (C(4) D). Sample extraction, separation, and detection of "Ecstasy" tablets were performed in <10 min without sample derivatization. The separation electrolyte was 20 mm TAPS/Lithium, pH 8.7. Average minimal detectable amounts for MDMA and mCPP were 0.04 mg/tablet, several orders of magnitude lower than the minimum amount encountered in a tablet. Seven different Ecstasy tablets seized in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, were analyzed by CE-C(4) D and compared against routine gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The CE method demonstrated sufficient selectivity to discriminate the two target drugs, MDMA and mCPP, from the other drugs present in seizures, namely amphepramone, fenproporex, caffeine, lidocaine, and cocaine. Separation was performed in <90 sec. The advantages of using C(4) D instead of traditional CE-UV methods for in-field analysis are also discussed.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • Ashley C. Smith, Amelia Boaks
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Since the mid-1990s, osteometrics have been a major aspect in forensic anthropology. However, recent evidence has shown that practitioners have been using differing points to establish certain measurements; namely those involving the clavicle, scapula, ulna, femur, and tibia. Engaging 61 practitioners, this study examined and confirmed how extensive this discord is. The highest consistency rate among practitioners was the scapular breadth (62.3%), followed by the femoral anteroposterior subtrochanteric diameter (55%). All other levels fell below these, particularly the physiological length of the ulna which was the most inconsistently measured bone. Furthermore, these low consistency rates yielded percent mean differences between two and 20% of the measurement length, with ranges averaging 14 mm. In light of these results, it is recommended that the field take steps to improve the standardization of such problematic measurements, including reexamining all measurements currently listed in osteometric texts, reassessing the utility of each, and reissuing a comprehensive guide.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014; 59(4).
  • Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014; 59(4).
  • Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014; 59(4).
  • Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014; 59(4).
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Drugs contributing to overdose deaths are listed on death certificates, but their validity is rarely studied. To assess the accuracy of “morphine” and “codeine” listings on death certificates for unintentional overdose deaths in Allegheny County, PA, investigative and laboratory reports were reviewed. Deaths were reclassified as heroin-related if documentation showed 6-monoacetylmorphine in blood or urine, “stamp bags” or drug paraphernalia at scene, history of heroin use, or track marks. Deaths were considered morphine-related if notes indicated morphine use, prescription, or morphine at scene, or codeine-related if the codeine blood level exceeded morphine. Of 112 deaths with morphine but not heroin listed on the death certificate, 74 met heroin criteria and 21 morphine criteria. Of 20 deaths with both morphine and heroin listed, only one met morphine criteria. Of 34 deaths with codeine listed, only five were attributed to codeine. Consideration of patient history, death scene evidence, and expanded toxicology testing may improve the accuracy of death certificate drug listings.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Maternal mortality and morbidity are the leading causes of death and illness, respectively, among women of reproductive age in many countries throughout the world. Of all maternal deaths, those related to unsafe abortions are the most widely underestimated, but they are also the most largely preventable. Medical abortion is a safe and reliable method for termination of a pregnancy in early gestation, although it is important to be aware of signs and symptoms of severe infection and toxic shock syndrome after the medical termination of pregnancy; case studies in literature are rarely fatal events. We report the first case of septic shock syndrome following a clandestine pregnancy termination with a misoprostol-only regimen (12 tablets 200 μg each). Autopsy findings and histopathological examination proved that the woman died from septic shock. This case suggests to improve the forensic investigations in case of unsafe, often clandestine, abortion is suspected.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ancestry estimation is essential for biological profile estimation in forensic anthropology. Hefner (2009) and Osteoware (Smithsonian Institution, 2011) presented 16 macromorphoscopic traits that can be scored for standardized data collection and can also be used within a statistical framework to estimate ancestry. The primary purpose of this research was to examine the utility of these traits for assessing ancestry. Tests of observer agreement and the range of variation in trait expression were evaluated. A sample of 208 American whites and blacks from the Hamann–Todd Collection were scored, and several classification methods were utilized in accordance with Hefner (2009). Correct classifications for the pooled sex analyses ranged from 73.3% to 86.6% and from 46.7% to 64.3% when the sexes were analyzed independently. Interobserver agreement was variable and was found to be lower than that presented in Hefner (2009). Trait expression was variable in both groups and was generally consistent with Hefner's findings.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Forensic taphonomy is an essential research field; however, the decomposition of human cadavers at forensic science facilities may lead to nutrient loading and the introduction of unique biological compounds to adjacent areas. The infrastructure of a water retention system may provide a mechanism for the biogeochemical processing and retention of nutrients and compounds, ensuring the control of runoff from forensic facilities. This work provides a proof of concept for a hydrologic retention system and an autonomous water quality monitoring program designed to mitigate runoff from The Southeast Texas Applied Forensic Science (STAFS) Facility. Water samples collected along a sample transect were analyzed for total phosphorous, total nitrogen, , , NH4, F−, and Cl−. Preliminary water quality analyses confirm the overall effectiveness of the water retention system. These results are discussed with relation to how this infrastructure can be expanded upon to monitor additional, more novel, byproducts of forensic science research facilities.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • Ana Slot, Zeno J.M.H. Geradts
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: On recordings of certain crimes, the face is not always shown. In such cases, hands can offer a solution, if they are completely visible. An important aspect of this study was to develop a method for hand comparison. The research method was based on the morphology, anthropometry, and biometry of hands. A new aspect of this study was that a manual and automated test were applied, which, respectively, assess many features and provide identification rates quickly. An important observation was that good quality images can provide sufficient hand details. The most distinctive features were the length/width ratio, the palm line pattern and the quantity of highly distinctive features present, and how they are distributed. The results indicate that experience did not improve the identification rates, while the manual test did. Intra-observer variability did not influence the results, whereas hands of relatives were frequently misjudged. Both tests provided high identification rates.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cleistanthus collinus is an extremely toxic plant poison. We report a case of suicidal ingestion of boiled water decoction of C. collinus where the patient presented with abdominal pain and giddiness. There was persistent metabolic acidosis and fluctuation in the level of serum potassium. The ECG changes indicated a probable myocardial injury with conduction abnormality. At autopsy, the viscera were found to be congested. The toxins were detected in the viscera and blood by TLC and HPLC. Cleistanthin A and B, collinusin, and diphyllin are the principal toxic constituents of the plant. Consumption of a boiled decoction of leaves is highly toxic and, medical management of patients is mainly supportive because the molecular mechanisms of toxin action are unknown. In the recent years, C. collinus has created a considerable amount of interest because of its complex metabolites and their cytotoxic activities. Through this study, the authors have tried to highlight different properties pertaining to C. collinus.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In case practice at forensic drug departments, multiple items from one seizure are sometimes sent in with the question: what is the total amount of drugs in the seizure? This may be complicated especially if impregnated material is involved such as clothes or rubber. Measurement uncertainty is typically stable on drug percentages, not weights, and subsampling may take place. It is recognized more and more that determination and reporting of uncertainty on estimators are an essential part of obtaining scientifically sound results in the forensic field. Methodology is described to quantify uncertainty on estimations of the total drug weight in groups of complex matrices, given simple statistical models, along a subdivision of five types of cases. Given each of these types, case examples are given where uncertainty is quantified in estimations of drug weights, by means of confidence intervals. The described models are statistically sound and relatively easy to implement.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Forensically significant digital trace evidence that is frequently present in sectors of digital media not associated with allocated or deleted files. Modern digital forensic tools generally do not decompress such data unless a specific file with a recognized file type is first identified, potentially resulting in missed evidence. Email addresses are encoded differently for different file formats. As a result, trace evidence can be categorized as Plain in File (PF), Encoded in File (EF), Plain Not in File (PNF), or Encoded Not in File (ENF). The tool bulk_extractor finds all of these formats, but other forensic tools do not. A study of 961 storage devices purchased on the secondary market and shows that 474 contained encoded email addresses that were not in files (ENF). Different encoding formats are the result of different application programs that processed different kinds of digital trace evidence. Specific encoding formats explored include BASE64, GZIP, PDF, HIBER, and ZIP.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;
  • Emily Ogden, Cynthia Schandl, Lee Marie Tormos
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ectodermal dysplasia comprises a group of disorders affecting ectodermal tissues. Severity depends on the genetic aberration; hyperpyrexia secondary to absence of sweat glands is a common complication. Treatment is supportive. This case report describes a 1-month, 27-day-old male infant with a diagnosis of X-linked recessive anhidrotic ectodermal dysplasia. On the day of his death, his mother swaddled him in a blanket and placed him on the couch at 5:30 am. When she picked him up at 8:00 am, he was unresponsive. At the emergency department, his rectal temperature was 40°C. Postmortem blood culture was positive for group B streptococcus, a possible etiology for fever. It is vital to teach parents that close monitoring of children with ectodermal dysplasia is necessary, as an increase in body temperature can become life threatening.
    Journal of Forensic Sciences 07/2014;

Related Journals