According To A National Video Forensics Expert, What Is The “New Dna For Law Enforcement”?

According To A National Video Forensics Expert, What Is The “New Dna For Law Enforcement”
According to a national video forensics expert, Video Analysis is the ‘new DNA for law enforcement ‘. Log in for more information. Added 7/27/2014 7:15:18 PM

Which method is used to identify suspects?

Introduction – Identification evidence is used by the prosecution in a criminal trial to identify the person who is alleged to have committed a crime. There are different types of identification evidence, including visual identification evidence, fingerprint evidence and DNA evidence.

Poor lighting conditions, bad weather or the distance between the witness and the person when they saw them The witness’s eye-sight, which may be in question The witness may have been in shock when they saw the person, or may have only seen them briefly A person’s memory may be unreliable

Other types of identification evidence such as fingerprint evidence and DNA evidence are considered more reliable.

Which type of photograph is often used to establish the identity of a subject or location and in some cases criminal behavior?

Footwear impressions left at a crime scene Forensic photography may refer to the visual documentation of different aspects that can be found at a crime scene. It may include the documentation of the crime scene, or physical evidence that is either found at a crime scene or already processed in a laboratory.

Forensic photography differs from other variations of photography because crime scene photographers usually have a very specific purpose for capturing each image. As a result, the quality of forensic documentation may determine the result of an investigation, in that with the absence of good documentation, investigators may find it impossible to conclude what did or did not happen.

Crime scenes can be major sources of physical evidence that is used to associate or link suspects to scenes, victims to scenes, and suspects to victims. Locard’s exchange principle is a major concept that helps determine these relationships of evidence.

It is the basic tenet of why crime scenes should be investigated. Anything found at a crime scene can be used as physical evidence as long as it is relevant to the case, which is why the documentation of a crime scene and physical evidence in its true form is key for the interpretation of the investigation.

Knowing that crucial information for an investigation can be found at a crime scene, forensic photography is a form of documentation that is essential for retaining the quality of discovered physical evidence. Such physical evidence to be documented include those found at the crime scene, in the laboratory, or for the identification of suspects.

What are the basic purpose of field notes?

How to Write Field Notes What are Field Notes? Your field notes are where you record observations and activities that you encounter or participate in during fieldwork. You should begin your field notes as soon as you start your field work, not when you begin collecting your oral histories! This means when you begin to meet with people to discuss the possibility of interviews or visit a community, you should start writing field notes about your experiences and observations.

  • Field notes serve the following functions: First, they work as descriptions : you write them as notes and details of time, date, activities, settings, observations, behavior and conversations in the field.
  • Field notes keep track of observations that you generally tend to forget over time.
  • They also supplement your research data because field notes help you keep track of observations during interviews and place documentations.

According to Thomas Schwandt, descriptive information is your “attempt to accurately document factual data and the settings, actions, behaviors, and conversations that you observe.” Second, field notes serve as interpretations, They allow you to examine value-laden and subjective aspects of field work.

As you write your field notes, in a different section distinct from the descriptive narratives, write your interpretations of what you encounter in the field. Theorize and suggest explanations for what you see. Explain what you observed and ruminate on why your observations are relevant and important.

Answer the “so-what” question. Third, field notes are reflections, This includes an introspective commentary of what you observe and experience — and what all this means to you. According to Thomas Schwandt, reflective information includes recording of “your thoughts, ideas, questions, and concerns as you are conducting the observation.” Complete the field notes as soon as possible after you complete a fieldwork activity.

According to Schwandt, “unless additional detail is added as soon as possible after the observation, important facts and opportunities for fully interpreting the data may be lost.” You can write your initial notes in cryptic form, shorthand, and quick notes that can be later expanded and formalized.

You may record your initial notes in a notebook, Another possibility is to talk out your observations immediately after your fieldwork. For example, you could turn on your voice recorder or your phone recording app and discuss your observations while you commute to your next destination. Always paginate your field notes. From Schwandt, Thomas A. The SAGE Dictionary of Qualitative Inquiry,4th edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2015. Characteristics of Field Notes

  • Be accurate, You only get one chance to observe a particular moment in time, so before you conduct your observations, practice taking notes in a setting that is similar to your observation site in regards to number of people, the environment, and social dynamics. This will help you develop your own style of transcribing observations quickly and accurately.
  • Be organized, Taking accurate notes while you are actively observing can be difficult. It is therefore important that you plan ahead how you will document your observation study, Notes that are disorganized will make it more difficult for you to interpret the data.
  • Be descriptive, Use descriptive words to document what you observe. For example, instead of noting that a classroom appears “comfortable,” state that the classroom includes soft lighting and cushioned chairs that can be moved around by the study participants. Being descriptive means supplying yourself with enough factual evidence that you don’t end up making assumptions about what you meant when you write the final report.
  • Focus on the research problem, Since it’s impossible to document everything you observe, include the greatest detail about aspects of the research problem and the theoretical constructs underpinning your research; avoid cluttering your notes with irrelevant information. For example, if the purpose of your study is to observe the discursive interactions between nursing home staff and the family members of residents, then it would only be necessary to document the setting in detail if it in some way directly influenced those interactions,
  • Record insights and thoughts, As you observe, be thinking about the underlying meaning of what you observe and record your thoughts and ideas accordingly. This will help if you to ask questions or seek clarification from participants after the observation. To avoid any confusion, subsequent comments from participants should be included in a separate, reflective part of your field notes and not merged with the descriptive notes.

General Guidelines for the Descriptive Content

  • Describe the physical setting.
  • Describe the social environment and the way in which participants interacted within the setting. This may include patterns of interactions, frequency of interactions, direction of communication patterns, and patterns of specific behavioral events, such as, conflicts, decision-making, or collaboration.
  • Describe the participants and their roles in the setting.
  • Describe, as best you can, the meaning of what was observed from the perspectives of the participants.
  • Record exact quotes or close approximations of comments that relate directly to the purpose of the study.
  • Describe any impact you might have had on the situation you observed,

General Guidelines for the Reflective Content

  • Note ideas, impressions, thoughts, and/or any criticisms you have about what you observed.
  • Include any unanswered questions or concerns that have arisen from analyzing the observation data.
  • Clarify points and/or correct mistakes and misunderstandings in other parts of field notes.
  • Include insights about what you have observed and speculate as to why you believe specific phenomenon occurred.
  • Record any thoughts that you may have regarding any future observations.

NOTE : Analysis of your field notes should occur as they are being written and while you are conducting your observations. This is important for at least two reasons. First, preliminary analysis fosters self-reflection, and self-reflection is crucial for understanding and meaning-making in any research study.

Second, preliminary analysis reveals emergent themes. Identifying emergent themes while observing allows you to shift your attention in ways that can foster a more developed investigation. Field Notes Template First and foremost, your field notes should be useful for you. Organize them as you will best be useful to you, which might include searchable keywords, or a very regular format.

Below is one possible template for your field notes which includes a very complete and regular format. Feel free to adapt it to your needs. You can see two different formatting examples in the document entitled “Example Field Notes.” Summary Write a one paragraph summary or abstract of the events.

  • Date:
  • Site/location:
  • Activity (explain in detail):
  • Participants (list names):
  • Length of Observation:
  • Description and photograph

Write a detailed narrative of what you observed. Document specific words, phrases, summaries of conversations, and insider language. If you can or would like, include a photograph. Tag the photo. Questions/Things to follow up with and sketch This is the interpretive part of your notes.

Please make sure you relate the field observations to larger issues discussed in the field school or in the required readings. List additional questions about people, places, or behaviors at the site for future investigation. “Analysis of what you learned in the setting regarding your guiding question and other related points.

This is how you will make links between the details and the larger things you are learning about how culture works in this context. What themes can you begin to identify regarding your guiding question? What questions do you have to help focus your observation on subsequent visits? Can you begin to draw preliminary connections or potential conclusions based on what you learned?” Add a sketch of a detail that explains your observations.

Your Name and Date
Descriptive narrative

  1. Date:
  2. Site/location:
  3. Activity (explain in detail):
  4. Participants (list names):
  5. Length of Observation:
Photo Sketch
Interpretations Reflections ibid. : How to Write Field Notes

Which are permanent written records of the facts of the case to be used in further investigation in writing reports and in prosecuting the case?

Investigative notes are a permanent written record of the facts of a case to be used in further investigation, in writing reports, and in prosecuting the case.

What kind of DNA evidence is the most powerful in forensic cases?

Advanced DNA technology, such as PCR, makes it possible to obtain conclusive results in cases in which previous testing might have been inconclusive. This can result in the identification of suspects in previously unsolvable cases or the exoneration of those wrongfully convicted.

What are the 2 main methods of criminal identification used today?

Three identification methods require the services of a forensic or investigative specialist: fingerprint comparison, DNA compari- son, and composite drawing. A more common identification method, the police lineup, involves investigators, witnesses or victims, and a known suspect.

What is rat law in forensic photography?

Once light hits a certain medium, its action can be characterized as either: Reflected, Transmitted or Absorbed (RAT). Reflected once the light hits a mirror and it bounce back.

What are the 4 types of photographs for a crime scene?

These three types of crime/accident scene photographs include overalls, midranges, and close-ups. The overall photographs document the general conditions of the scene, with both exterior and interior views, and how the specific crime scene relates to the surrounding area.

What are the six interrogatory investigative questions?

Skip to content I will admit to a guility pastime: I enjoy reading crime novels and watching crime shows on TV. The main reason is that I enjoy exploring the unknown and trying to solve the mystery. I think it is that part of me that also gives me joy while doing research.

I never stop asking questions, with the unfortunate outcome that I occasionally leave people around me quite annoyed. When faced with a problem in life science I tend to look at it as solving a mystery. The complexity of what is happening inside a cell and why it happens has always fascinated me. I sometimes look at it as an enclosed society where the molecules are performing their assigned roles within communication, transport, governing, waste management and so on.

When I learned that journalists and police are using the Six W´s of Investigation technique to be able to get the whole story it made perfect sense to use the six W’s to understand problems within life science. If you can answer: what, why, who, when, where and how ; you will have a clear and fundamental knowledge of the whole situation.

  • Within journalism and police investigation the Six W´s of Investigation are used to gather basic information.
  • If all these questions are answered; you have the whole story.
  • Here are some suggestions of questions to ask when investigating a biological situation on a macro molecular or cell level: What Define the situation or the problem.

What is it about? What are you trying to find out? What is the reason for investigating it? What is happening? What change occurs? What happens next and what is the sequence of events? What are verified and established events? What events need to be examined further? What are the different actors? What type of environment is it happening in (pH, salt, other agents)? What agents are needed and what can be substituted? Who I suggest to personify the macro molecules or cells and look at them as the actors.

Who are involved (as in which proteins, nucleic acids or cells are involved)? Who are most affected? Who are not affected at all? Who has a positive effect? Who has a negative effect? Who has no effect? Who are the major players? Who are contributing players? Who can be removed? Who needs to be added? Who changes conformation? Who is being recruited? Why Describe the need and the situation.

Why is it occurring? Why is it important? Why do the contributing parts need to be there? Why does it not happen elsewhere? Why are the actors involved? Why is the effect so small (or conversely, why is the effect so large)? Why is this actor not involved? Why does that occur when this is added or changed? Where Describe the locations of the different occurrences.

  • Where in the cell does this happen? Where in the body is it occurring? Where on the cell surface is the impact? Where on the chromatin? Where in the signal cascade? When This can point to both a timeline and after changing conditions by adding or removing certain stimuli.
  • When does the change occur? When does the sequence start or stop? When is it necessary to have this present? When does an actor leave the situation? When is this no longer important? How Describe the process of occurrences and how it can be examined.

How does the sequence start? How much is needed? How are the molecules or cells affected? How does the sequence take a different direction? How can it be examined and how can it be proven or verified? How long does a contributing actor need to be involved? How can the situation be mimicked in vitro? Brainstorm Start with a brainstorming session, alone or in a group.

Write down the six W’s of investigation: all the what, who, why, where, when and how questions you can think of that is relevant for your problem. If you write them on sticky notes or index cards it is easy to sort and categorize them after the brainstorming. Continue with answering the questions.

Jump back and forth between the questions while the story is outlined. For each answer more questions can turn up. Continue to write down the questions and answer them along the way. The Six W’s of Investigation technique can be used in many situations when you need to get a good thorough overview of a problem or a challenge.

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What are the two main types of field notes?

Structure – The structure of fieldnotes can vary depending on the field the author is in. Generally, there are two components of fieldnotes: descriptive information and reflective information. Descriptive information is factual data that is being recorded.

Factual data includes time and date, the state of the physical setting, social environment, descriptions of the subjects being studied and their roles in the setting, and the impact that the observer may have had on the environment. Reflective information is the observer’s reflections about the observation being conducted.

These reflections are ideas, questions, concerns, and other related thoughts. Fieldnotes can also include sketches, diagrams, and other drawings. Visually capturing a phenomenon requires the observer to pay more attention to every detail so as to not overlook anything.

An author does not necessarily need to possess great artistic abilities to craft an exceptional note. In many cases, a rudimentary drawing or sketch can greatly assist in later data collection and synthesis. Increasingly, photographs may be included as part of a fieldnote when collected in a digital format.

Others may further sub-divide the structure of fieldnotes. Nigel Rapport said that fieldnotes in anthropology transition rapidly among three types.

  1. Inscription – where the writer records notes, their impressions, and potentially important keywords.
  2. Transcription – where the author writes down dictated local text
  3. Description – a reflective type of writing that synthesizes previous observations and analysis for a later situation in which a more coherent conclusion can be made of the notes.

Are field notes a legal document?

Making Field Notes | Herbarium Field notes give all the information about a plant that cannot be preserved with the specimen. Things like whether the plant was a tree or a shrub, how tall it was and what color the flower was when it was picked are all things that cannot be guessed at later from the specimen. Write your field notes BEFORE starting to collect. Train yourself to write neatly and clearly. Dream of the day when you become a botanist or botanical collector and your field notebook is used by someone else to type up your labels. DO NOT RECOPY YOUR FIELD NOTES.

Start by giving your plant a number. Use consecutive numbers so you can find them easily in your note book later. Some botanists collect more than 10,000 specimens so they need to have a good numbering system. Write your specimen number in the field note book and on the plant tag. If you have more than one specimen from the same plant then write more tags with the same number on them. The plant number is the only information you need on the tag. Add the date and who is with you (if anyone) to the field notes.

Information that describes the plant itself. This includes the features that will not be preserved with your specimen. For example, was the plant a tree or a shrub? How tall was it? What color was the flower when you picked it (flower color may change on drying)? A description of the bark.

  • Information that describes the location.
  • Where did you collect the plant? The more accurately you do this, the better your collection.
  • A topographic map may help.
  • Also, use the odometer on your car.
  • Remember to note what it reads when you go by landmarks on a collecting trip.
  • Botanists require very accurate information about the location so they record the latitude (lat.), longitude (long.) and elevation using a GPS unit.

You will need to include state and county with the location information. Information that describes the ecological characteristics of the area (habitat description). There are two parts to this description:

physical habitat – the type of soil, rocks, slope, elevation, aspect, moisture (for instance, whether the site is always wet, NOT whether it was pouring rain when you collected the plant). biological habitat – the other types of plants growing around your specimen. What kind of plant community is it growing in (open forest, opening in forest, closed forest, grassland, shrub-steppe, disturbed roadside. If you can name the other plants growing with your specimen, great!

: Making Field Notes | Herbarium

What is a written document a lawyer files with the court to explain his or her arguments?

Legal Terms Glossary

  • The Legal Terms Glossary defines over 100 of the most common legal terms in easy-to-understand language. Terms are listed in alphabetical order and can be better accessed by choosing a letter here:
  • | | | | | | | | | | K | | | | | | Q | | | | | | | X | Y | Z
  • acquittal – Judgment that a criminal defendant has not been proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

affidavit – A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it. Affidavits must be notarized or administered by an officer of the court with such authority. affirmed – Judgment by appellate courts where the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as decided in the lower court.

Alford plea – A defendant’s plea that allows him to assert his innocence but allows the court to sentence the defendant without conducting a trial. Essentially, the defendant is admitting that the evidence is sufficient to show guilt. Such a plea is often made for purposes of negotiating a deal with the prosecutor for lesser charges or a sentence.

allegation – Something that someone says happened. answer – The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense. appeal – A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly.

  • To make such a request is “to appeal” or “to take an appeal.” Both the plaintiff and the defendant can appeal, and the party doing so is called the appellant.
  • Appeals can be made for a variety of reasons including improper procedure and asking the court to change its interpretation of the law.
  • Appellate – About appeals; an appellate court has the power to review the judgment of another lower court or tribunal.

arraignment – A proceeding in which an individual who is accused of committing a crime is brought into court, told of the charges, and asked to plead guilty or not guilty. arrest warrant – A written order directing the arrest of a party. Arrest warrants are issued by a judge after a showing of probable cause.

  • Bail – Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
  • Bankruptcy – Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start.

Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings. bench trial – Trial without a jury in which a judge decides the facts. In a jury trial, the jury decides the facts.

  • Defendants will occasionally waive the right to a jury trial and choose to have a bench trial.
  • Beyond a reasonable doubt – Standard required to convict a criminal defendant of a crime.
  • The prosecution must prove the guilt so that there is no reasonable doubt to the jury that the defendant is guilty.
  • Binding precedent – A prior decision by a court that must be followed without a compelling reason or significantly different facts or issues.

Courts are often bound by the decisions of appellate courts with authority to review their decisions. For example, district courts are bound by the decisions of the court of appeals that can review their cases, and all courts – both state and federal – are bound by the decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States.

  • Brief – A written statement submitted by the lawyer for each side in a case that explains to the judge(s) why they should decide the case (or a particular part of a case) in favor of that lawyer’s client.
  • Capital offense – A crime punishable by death.
  • In the federal system, it applies to crimes such as first degree murder, genocide, and treason.

case law – The use of court decisions to determine how other law (such as statutes) should apply in a given situation. For example, a trial court may use a prior decision from the Supreme Court that has similar issues.

  1. chambers – A judge’s office.
  2. charge – The law that the police believe the defendant has broken.
  3. charge to the jury – The judge’s instructions to the jury concerning the law that applies to the facts of the case on trial.

chief judge – The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court. The chief judge also decides cases, and the choice of chief judges is determined by seniority. circumstantial evidence – All evidence that is not direct evidence (such as eyewitness testimony).

  • Clerk of court – An officer appointed by the court to work with the chief judge in overseeing the court’s administration, especially to assist in managing the flow of cases through the court and to maintain court records.
  • Common law – The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States.

It is based on court decisions rather than statutes passed by the legislature.

  • complaint – A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • continuance – Decision by a judge to postpone trial until a later date.
  • contract – An agreement between two or more persons that creates an obligation to do or not to do a particular thing.
  • conviction – A judgment of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • counsel – Legal advice; a term used to refer to lawyers in a case.

counterclaim – A claim that a defendant makes against a plaintiff. Counterclaims can often be brought within the same proceedings as the plaintiff’s claims. court – Government entity authorized to resolve legal disputes. Judges sometimes use “court” to refer to themselves in the third person, as in “the court has read the briefs.”

  1. court reporter – A person who makes a word-for-word record of what is said in court and produces a transcript of the proceedings upon request.
  2. cross-examine – Questioning of a witness by the attorney for the other side.
  3. damages – Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
  4. default judgment – A judgment rendered because of the defendant’s failure to answer or appear.
  5. defendant – In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  6. defense table – The table where the defense lawyer sits with the defendant in the courtroom.

deposition – An oral statement made before an officer authorized by law to administer oaths. Such statements are often taken to examine potential witnesses, to obtain discovery, or to be used later in trial.

  • direct evidence – Evidence that supports a fact without an inference.
  • discovery – Lawyers’ examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
  • docket – A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.

en banc – “In the bench” or “full bench.” Refers to court sessions with the entire membership of a court participating, rather than the usual quorum.U.S. courts of appeals usually sit in panels of three judges, but may expand to a larger number in certain cases they deem important enough to be decided by the entire court.

They are then said to be sitting en banc. evidence – Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other. exculpatory evidence – Evidence which tends to show the defendant’s innocence. exhibit – Physical evidence or documents that are presented in a court proceeding.

Common exhibits include contracts, weapons, and photographs. federal question – Jurisdiction given to federal courts in cases involving the interpretation and application of the U.S. Constitution, acts of Congress, and treaties. In some cases, state courts can decide these issues, too, but the cases can always be brought in federal courts.

  1. Felony – A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
  2. File – To place a paper in the official custody of the clerk of court to enter into the files or records of a case.
  3. Lawyers must file a variety of documents throughout the life of a case.
  4. Grand jury – A body of citizens who listen to evidence of criminal allegations, which are presented by the government, and determines whether there is probable cause to believe the offense was committed.

As it is used in federal criminal cases, “the government” refers to the lawyers of the U.S. Attorney’s office who are prosecuting the case. Grand jury proceedings are closed to the public, and the person suspected of having committed the crime is not entitled to be present or have an attorney present.

  1. States are not required to use grand juries, but the federal government must do so under the Constitution.
  2. Habeas corpus – A writ that is often used to bring a prisoner before the court to determine the legality of his imprisonment.
  3. A prisoner wanting to argue that there is not sufficient cause to be imprisoned would file a writ of habeas corpus.

It may also be used to bring a person in custody before the court to give testimony, or to be prosecuted. hearsay – Statements by a witness who did not see or hear the incident in question but learned about it through secondhand information such as another’s statement, a newspaper, or a document.

  • Hearsay is usually not admissible as evidence in court, but there are many exceptions to that rule.
  • Impeachment – (1) The process of calling something into question, as in “impeaching the testimony of a witness.” (2) The constitutional process whereby the House of Representatives may “impeach” (accuse of misconduct) high officers of the federal government for trial in the Senate.

inculpatory evidence – Evidence which tends to show the defendant’s guilt. indictment – The formal charge issued by a grand jury stating that there is enough evidence that the defendant committed the crime to justify having a trial; it is used primarily for felonies.

  1. information – A formal accusation by a government attorney that the defendant committed a misdemeanor.
  2. initial hearing – Court proceeding in which the defendant learns of his rights and the charges against him and the judge decides bail.
  3. injunction – An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
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interrogatories – Written questions asked to one party by an opposing party, who must answer them in writing under oath. Interrogatories are a part of discovery in a lawsuit. interview – A meeting with the police or prosecutor. issue – (1) The disputed point in a disagreement between parties in a lawsuit.

(2) To send out officially, as in to issue an order. judge – Government official with authority to decide lawsuits brought before courts. Judicial officers of the Supreme Court and the highest court in each state are called justices. judgment – The official decision of a court finally determining the respective rights and claims of the parties to a suit.

jurisdiction – (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. Some issues can be heard in both state and federal courts. The plaintiff initially decides where to bring the suit, but in some cases, the defendant can seek to change the court.

  1. 2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
  2. A federal court in one state, for example, can usually only decide a case that arose from actions in that state.
  3. Juror – A person who is on the jury.
  4. Jury – Persons selected according to law and sworn to inquire into and declare a verdict on matters of fact.

State court juries can be as small as six jurors in some cases. Federal juries for civil suits must have six jurors criminal suits must have twelve. jury instructions – A judge’s explanation to the jury before it begins deliberations of the questions it must answer and the law governing the case.

  • jurisprudence – The study of law and the structure of the legal system.
  • lawsuit – A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
  • law clerk (or staff attorney) – Assist judges with research and drafting of opinions.
  • librarian – Meets the informational needs of the judges and lawyers.

litigation – A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants. magistrate judges – Judicial officers who assist U.S. district court judges in getting cases ready for trial. They may decide some criminal and civil trials when both parties agree to have the case heard by a magistrate judge instead of a district court judge.

Misdemeanor – Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement. mistrial – An invalid trial caused by fundamental error. When a mistrial is declared, the trial must start again, beginning with the selection of a new jury. motion – Attempt to have a limited issue heard by the court.

Motions can be filed before, during, and after trial. nolo contendere – No contest. Has the same effect as a plea of guilty as far as the criminal sentence is concerned, but the plea may not be considered an admission of guilt for any other purpose. Sometimes, a guilty plea could later be used to show fault in a lawsuit, but the plea of nolo contendere forces the plaintiff in the lawsuit to prove that the defendant committed the crime.

oath – A promise to tell the truth. objection – A protest by an attorney, challenging a statement or question made at trial. Common objections include an attorney “leading the witness” or a witness making a statement that is hearsay. Once an objection is made, the judge must decide whether to allow the question or statement.

opinion – A judge’s written explanation of a decision of the court. In an appeal, multiple opinions may be written. The court’s ruling comes from a majority of judges and forms the majority opinion. A dissenting opinion disagrees with the majority because of the reasoning and/or the principles of law on which the decision is based.

  1. oral argument – An opportunity for lawyers to summarize their position before the court in an appeal and also to answer the judges’ questions.
  2. panel – (1) In appellate cases, a group of judges (usually three) assigned to decide the case; (2) In the jury selection process, the group of potential jurors.
  3. parties – Plaintiffs and defendants (petitioners and respondents) to lawsuits, also known as appellants and appellees in appeals, and their lawyers.

petit jury (or trial jury) – A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons. plaintiff – The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.

  1. Plea – In a criminal case, the defendant’s statement pleading “guilty” or “not guilty” in answer to the charges in open court.
  2. A plea of nolo contendere or an Alford plea may also be made.
  3. A guilty plea allows the defendant to forego a trial.
  4. Plea deal (or plea bargain or agreement) – Agreement between the defendant and prosecutor where the defendant pleads guilty in exchange for a concession by the prosecutor.

It may include lesser charges, a dismissal of charges, or the prosecutor’s recommendation to the judge of a more lenient sentence. pleadings – Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.

  • Precedent – A court decision in an earlier case with facts and law similar to a dispute currently before a court.
  • Precedent will ordinarily govern the decision of a later similar case, unless a party can show that it was wrongly decided or that it differed in some significant way.
  • Some precedent is binding, meaning that it must be followed.

Other precedents need not be followed by the court but can be considered influential. procedure – The rules for the conduct of a lawsuit; there are rules of civil, criminal, evidence, bankruptcy, and appellate procedure. preliminary hearing – A hearing where the judge decides whether there is enough evidence to require the defendant to go to trial.

  • Preliminary hearings do not require the same rules as trials.
  • For example, hearsay is often admissible during the preliminary hearing but not at trial.
  • Pretrial conference – A meeting of the judge and lawyers to discuss which matters should be presented to the jury, to review evidence and witnesses, to set a timetable, and to discuss the settlement of the case.

probable cause – An amount of suspicion leading one to believe certain facts are probably true. The Fourth Amendment requires probable cause for the issuance of an arrest or search warrant.

  • probation – A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
  • probation officers (or pretrial services officers) – Screen applicants for pretrial release and monitor convicted offenders released under court supervision.
  • pro se – A Latin term meaning “on one’s own behalf”; in courts, it refers to persons who present their own cases without lawyers.

prosecute – To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.

  1. public defenders – Represent defendants who can’t afford an attorney in criminal matters.
  2. record – A written account of all the acts and proceedings in a lawsuit.
  3. remand – When an appellate court sends a case back to a lower court for further proceedings. The lower court is often required to do something differently, but that does not always mean the court’s final decision will change
  4. reporter – Makes a record of court proceedings, prepares a transcript, and publishes the court’s opinions or decisions.

reverse – When an appellate court sets aside the decision of a lower court because of an error. A reversal is often followed by a remand. For example, if the defendant argued on appeal that certain evidence should not have been used at trial, and the appeals court agrees, the case will be remanded in order for the trial court to reconsider the case without that evidence.

  1. Search warrant – Orders that a specific location be searched for items, which if found, can be used in court as evidence.
  2. Search warrants require probable cause in order to be issued.
  3. Sentence – The punishment ordered by a court for a defendant convicted of a crime.
  4. Federal courts look to the United States Sentencing Commission Guidelines when deciding the proper punishment for a given crime.

service of process – The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party. settlement – Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party’s claims.

  • sidebar – A conference between the judge and lawyers held out of earshot of the jury and spectators.
  • statement – A description that a witness gives to the police and that the police write down.
  • statute – A law passed by a legislature.
  • statute of limitations – A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
  • subpoena – A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
  • subpoena duces tecum – A command to a witness to produce documents.

summary judgment – A decision made on the basis of statements and evidence presented for the record without a trial. It is used when there is no dispute as to the facts of the case, and one party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. temporary restraining order – Prohibits a person from an action that is likely to cause irreparable harm.

This differs from an injunction in that it may be granted immediately, without notice to the opposing party, and without a hearing. It is intended to last only until a hearing can be held. testify – Answer questions in court. testimony – Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.

tort – A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident. transcript – A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation.

  • Trial – A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads “not guilty,” and the parties are required to come to court to present evidence.
  • Uphold – The decision of an appellate court not to reverse a lower court decision.
  • Also called “affirm.” U.S.
  • Attorney (or federal prosecutor) – A lawyer appointed by the President in each judicial district to prosecute and defend cases for the federal government.U.S.

Marshal (or bailiff) – enforce the rules of behavior in courtrooms.

  1. venue – The geographical location in which a case is tried.
  2. verdict – The decision of a petit jury or a judge.
  3. victim advocate – work with prosecutors and assist the victims of a crime.

voir dire – The process by which judges and lawyers select a petit jury from among those eligible to serve by questioning them to determine knowledge of the facts of the case and a willingness to decide the case only on the evidence presented in court.

  • Voir dire” is a phrase meaning “to speak the truth.” warrant – An arrest warrant is a written order directing the arrest of a party.
  • A search warrant orders that a specific location be searched for items, which if found, can be used in court as evidence.
  • Search warrants require probable cause in order to be issued.

witness – A person called upon by either side in a lawsuit to give testimony before the court or jury. writ – A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act. writ of certiorari – An order issued by the Supreme Court directing the lower court to transmit records for a case for which it will hear on appeal.

How do you determine which evidence is most important to analyze from a crime scene?

How and Where Tests on the Evidence are Conducted – The most probative evidence will be sent to either a forensic laboratory or, if the laboratory does not have an expert in that forensic discipline, to an outside analyst for examination. To help identify the evidence that is most valuable, the crime scene personnel may conduct initial screening tests, called presumptive tests, at the scene.

These tests can be useful in determining the type of substance present—whether it’s a toxin or a drug, a stain that contains body fluids, or even whether a dried red substance found in the kitchen is blood or ketchup. Presumptive tests allow investigators to narrow the field of possibilities to a certain class of substance, but they are not specific enough to confirm the presence of specific compounds.

In addition to helping provide clues to indicate how the crime occurred and who may have been involved, presumptive tests can also help reduce the quantity of evidence that is submitted to the lab to include only the most important items. This helps to expedite processing at the laboratory.

How to document a crime scene what critical aspects of evidence collection must be included?

Summary – The three most common methods of recording a crime scene are: note taking, sketching, and photography. A detailed record of the crime scene and of the actions taken during the search of it, help the crime scene specialist to accurately recall events and to identify items of evidence later in a court of law.

The notes taken, sketches and photographs made by the crime scene specialist during the search for evidence also serve as a valuable reference concerning the details uncovered during the search and the thoroughness of the method. The goal of this lesson is to provide participants with an overview of the various methods of documenting a crime scene, to include note taking, sketching, and photography.

The goal of practical exercise is to provide the participants with the opportunity to practice note taking, photography and the drawing of a rough and detailed sketch of a fictitious crime scene At the conclusion of this lesson, participants will be able to:

Identify at least six (6) essential items of information that should be included in a crime scene specialist’s notes. Identify at least six (6) pieces of information that should be included on a crime scene sketch and become familiar with the considerations involved in crime scene sketching. Identify three (3) methods used in sketching a crime scene. Identify at least two (2) reasons why photographing the crime scene is important, become familiar with the procedures for photographing the crime scene, list at least six (6) sequental photographs of the crime scene, and identify three (3) types of “range” photographs. Identify the importance of the markings in the filed of view and list the general standards used to review the credibility of the photographs. Identify two prime causes of a lack of sharpness of camera motion and list the pieces of information which should be recorded in the crime scene specialist’s notes Identify the importance of film speed and film type. Become familiar with the operations of the camera List the six (6) steps used to load film into a 35 mm camera and the three (3) steps used to unload film from a 35 mm camera. Become familiar with the terms and the nature of digital photography, and and explain how the digital image can be altered. Explain the difference between digital and conventional photographs as legal evidence.

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: Lesson #03: Documenting the Crime Scene

Which DNA is most accurate?

The best DNA testing kit: AncestryDNA – According To A National Video Forensics Expert, What Is The “New Dna For Law Enforcement” Photo: Sarah Kobos

Which DNA sample is most accurate?

How is a normal DNA sample gathered? – For DNA testing the most popular and reliable way to collect samples is the oral buccal swab method. A buccal swab closely resembles a one ended Q-Tip in appearance. Using swabs as a collection method is quick and painless and is the recommended way to collect DNA samples for testing.

What is the most detailed DNA test?

Best DNA kit for health data – Amazon If you want a DNA kit for both preliminary health information and a deeper look into your ancestry, the 23andMe Health + Ancestry Service is your best bet. Pros: Second largest database, some of the health tests are FDA-approved, identifies haplogroups Cons: Higher price due to health testing, health testing may bring up sensitive information At $199, 23andMe Health + Ancestry Service is the priciest kit on our list.

But you’ll get over 40 carrier status reports (i.e., whether you carry gene mutations for inherited diseases) and reports on more than 10 health dispositions. This helps provide insight into your genetic risk for diseases like type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s disease. While these reports can be interesting and enlightening, it’s important to remember a positive result doesn’t mean you’ll definitely get the disease, and a negative result doesn’t mean you won’t.

In addition to health, 23andMe provides ancestry results with an ethnicity estimate breakdown, an interactive map showing where your ancestors came from, and haplogroups, which look at the deep ancestry on your mother’s or father’s side of the family.

  1. Female testers will only be able to see their maternal haplogroup, but male testers can get information on their paternal haplogroup because this test is done on the Y chromosome (which only genetic males have).
  2. Lastly, 23andMe has a robust platform for making family connections with your DNA matches if you opt-in.

You can send messages through the platform and can even see a map of where your potential family matches are located. And with more than 12 million people in their database, the chances of finding distant (or not-so-distant) relatives could be high.

What new method was used to identify criminals?

Alphonse Bertillon
Mugshot of Bertillon (self-portrait)
Born 22 April 1853 Paris, France
Died 13 February 1914 (aged 60) Paris, France
Occupation law enforcement officer and biometrics researcher

Louis Bertillon (father)

Class on the Bertillon system in France in 1911 Class on the Bertillon system in France in 1911 Alphonse Bertillon ( French: ; 22 April 1853 – 13 February 1914) was a French police officer and biometrics researcher who applied the anthropological technique of anthropometry to law enforcement creating an identification system based on physical measurements.

Anthropometry was the first scientific system used by police to identify criminals. Before that time, criminals could only be identified by name or photograph. The method was eventually supplanted by fingerprinting, He is also the inventor of the mug shot, Photographing of criminals began in the 1840s only a few years after the invention of photography, but it was not until 1888 that Bertillon standardized the process.

His flawed evidence was used to wrongly convict Alfred Dreyfus in the infamous Dreyfus affair,

What is the most commonly used method of identification?

It has been internationally accepted that primary identifiers is the most reliable method by which identification can be confirmed. These identifiers are ‘Friction Ridge Analysis’, ‘Forensic Odontology’ and ‘DNA’. The following symbols are widely used to depict the individual methods of identification.

What is the most accurate measurement of crime?

The Nation’s Two Crime Measures The U.S. Department of Justice administers two statistical programs to measure the magnitude, nature, and impact of crime in the nation: the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program and the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS).

Each of these programs produces valuable information about aspects of the nation’s crime problem. Because the UCR and NCVS programs are conducted for different purposes, use different methods, and focus on somewhat different aspects of crime, the information they produce together provides a more comprehensive panorama of the nation’s crime than either could produce alone.

The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) began publishing information for the UCR Program in 1929, just two years after the IACP had established a committee to research the uniform reporting of crime statistics. Since September 1930, the FBI has administered the program and currently collects information on the following crimes: murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.

Law enforcement agencies report arrest data for 21 additional crime categories. The UCR Program compiles data from monthly law enforcement reports or individual crime incident records transmitted directly to the FBI or to centralized state agencies that then report to the FBI. The program thoroughly examines each report it receives for reasonableness, accuracy, and deviations that may indicate errors.

Large variations in crime levels may indicate modified records procedures, incomplete reporting, or changes in a jurisdiction’s boundaries. To identify any unusual fluctuations in an agency’s crime counts, the program compares monthly reports to previous submissions of the agency and with those for similar agencies.

The UCR Program presents crime counts for the nation as a whole, as well as for regions, states, counties, cities, towns, tribal law enforcement, and colleges and universities. This permits studies among neighboring jurisdictions and among those with similar populations and other common characteristics.

The FBI annually publishes its findings in a preliminary release in the spring of the following calendar year, followed by a detailed annual report, Crime in the United States, issued in the fall. In addition to crime counts and trends, this report includes data on crimes cleared, persons arrested (age, sex, and race), law enforcement personnel, and the characteristics of homicides (including age, sex, and race of victims and offenders; victim-offender relationships; weapons used; and circumstances surrounding the homicides).

Other periodic reports are also available from the UCR Program. The local and state law enforcement agencies participating in the UCR Program are continually converting to the more comprehensive and detailed National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). The NIBRS provides detailed information about each criminal incident in 22 broad categories of offenses.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics’ (BJS) NCVS, which began in 1973, provides a detailed picture of crime incidents, victims, and trends. After a substantial period of research, the BJS completed an intensive methodological redesign of the survey in 1992.

The BJS conducted the redesign to improve the questions used to uncover crime, update the survey methods, and broaden the scope of crimes measured. The redesigned survey collects detailed information on the frequency and nature of the crimes of rape, sexual assault, robbery, aggravated and simple assault, personal larceny, household burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft.

It does not measure homicide or commercial crimes (such as burglaries of stores). Each year, the BJS personnel interview household members in a nationally representative sample of approximately 169,000 persons age 12 or older. Households stay in the sample for 3 ½ years.

New households rotate into the sample on an ongoing basis. The NCVS collects information on crimes experienced by individuals and households, whether or not those crimes were reported to law enforcement. It collects whether the crime type was reported to law enforcement, and it summarizes the reasons that victims give for reporting or not reporting.

The survey provides information about victims (age, sex, race, ethnicity, marital status, income, and educational level), offenders (sex, race, approximate age, and victim-offender relationship), and the crimes (time and place of occurrence, use of weapons, nature of injury, and economic consequences).

Questions also cover the experiences of victims with the criminal justice system, self-protective measures used by victims, and possible substance abuse by offenders. Supplements are added periodically to the survey to obtain detailed information on topics like school crime, identity theft, contacts between police and citizens, and stalking.

The BJS published the first data from the redesigned NCVS in a BJS bulletin in June 1995. BJS publication of NCVS data includes Criminal Victimization in the United States, an annual report that covers the broad range of detailed information collected by the NCVS, and the National Victimization Analysis Tool, an online database through which users can examine victimization rates, counts, and percentages by a range of victim and crime characteristics.

  • The BJS publishes detailed reports on topics such as intimate partner violence, workplace violence, hate crimes, and crimes against persons with disabilities.
  • The National Archive of Criminal Justice Data at the University of Michigan archives the NCVS data files to enable researchers to perform independent analyses.

Because the BJS designed the NCVS to complement the UCR Program, the two programs share many similarities. As much as their different collection methods permit, the two measure the same subset of serious crimes, defined alike. Both programs cover rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft.

  1. Rape, robbery, theft, and motor vehicle theft are defined virtually identically by both the UCR and the NCVS.
  2. Although rape is defined analogously, the UCR Program measures the crime against women only, and the NCVS measures it against both sexes.) There are also significant differences between the two programs.

First, the two programs were created to serve different purposes. The UCR Program’s primary objective is to provide a reliable set of criminal justice statistics for law enforcement administration, operation, and management. The BJS established the NCVS to provide previously unavailable information about crime (including crime not reported to police), victims, and offenders.

  1. Second, the two programs measure an overlapping but nonidentical set of crimes.
  2. The NCVS includes crimes both reported and not reported to law enforcement.
  3. The NCVS excludes, but the UCR includes, homicide, arson, commercial crimes, and crimes against children under age 12.
  4. The UCR captures crimes reported to law enforcement but collects only arrest data for simple assault and sexual assault other than forcible rape.

Third, because of methodology, the NCVS and UCR definitions of some crime differ. For example, the UCR defines burglary as the unlawful entry or attempted entry of a structure to commit a felony or theft. The NCVS, not wanting to ask victims to ascertain offender motives, defines burglary as the entry or attempted entry of a residence by a person who had no right to be there.

Fourth, for property crimes (burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft), the two programs calculate crime rates using different bases. The UCR rates for these crimes are per capita (number of crimes per 100,000 persons), whereas the NCVS rates for these crimes are per household (number of crimes per 1,000 households).

Because the number of households may not grow at the same rate each year as the total population, trend data for rates of property crimes measured by the two programs may not be comparable. In addition, some differences in the data from the two programs may result from sampling variation in the NCVS and from estimating for nonresponse in the UCR.

The BJS derives the NCVS estimates from interviewing a sample. The estimates are, therefore, subject to a margin of error, which is known and reflected in the standard error of the estimate. The BJS uses rigorous statistical methods to calculate confidence intervals around all survey estimates. The BJS describes trend data in the NCVS reports as genuine only if there is at least a 90 percent certainty that the measured changes are not the result of sampling variation.

The UCR Program bases its data on the actual counts of offenses reported by law enforcement agencies. In some circumstances, the UCR Program estimates its data for nonparticipating agencies or those reporting partial data. Apparent discrepancies between statistics from the two programs can usually be accounted for by their definitional and procedural differences or resolved by comparing NCVS sampling variations (confidence intervals) of those crimes said to have been reported to police with UCR statistics.

For most types of crimes measured by both the UCR and NCVS, analysts familiar with the programs can exclude from analysis those aspects of crime not common to both. Resulting long-term trend lines can be brought into close concordance. The impact of such adjustments is most striking for robbery, burglary, and motor vehicle theft, whose definitions most closely coincide.

With robbery, the BJS bases the NCVS victimization rates only on robberies reported to the police. It is also possible to remove UCR robberies of commercial establishments such as gas stations, convenience stores, and banks from analysis. When users compare the resulting NCVS police-reported robbery rates and the UCR noncommercial robbery rates, the results reveal closely corresponding long-term trends.

Each program has unique strengths. The UCR provides a measure of the number of crimes reported to law enforcement agencies throughout the country. The UCR’s Supplementary Homicide Reports provide the most reliable, timely data on the extent and nature of homicides in the Nation. In addition to providing point and change estimates on criminal victimization, the NCVS is the primary source of information on the characteristics of criminal victimization and on the number and types of crimes not reported to law enforcement authorities.

By understanding the strengths and limitations of each program, it is possible to use the UCR and NCVS to achieve a greater understanding of crime trends and the nature of crime in the United States. For example, changes in police procedures, shifting attitudes towards crime and police, and other societal changes can affect the extent to which people report and law enforcement agencies record crime.

What are two methods of forensic science used to identify a suspect?

The two methods used by forensic scientists when examining physical evidence are identification and comparison. Identification is the process of determining a substance’s physical or chemical identity.

What new method was used to identify criminals?

Alphonse Bertillon
Mugshot of Bertillon (self-portrait)
Born 22 April 1853 Paris, France
Died 13 February 1914 (aged 60) Paris, France
Occupation law enforcement officer and biometrics researcher

Louis Bertillon (father)

Class on the Bertillon system in France in 1911 Class on the Bertillon system in France in 1911 Alphonse Bertillon ( French: ; 22 April 1853 – 13 February 1914) was a French police officer and biometrics researcher who applied the anthropological technique of anthropometry to law enforcement creating an identification system based on physical measurements.

Anthropometry was the first scientific system used by police to identify criminals. Before that time, criminals could only be identified by name or photograph. The method was eventually supplanted by fingerprinting, He is also the inventor of the mug shot, Photographing of criminals began in the 1840s only a few years after the invention of photography, but it was not until 1888 that Bertillon standardized the process.

His flawed evidence was used to wrongly convict Alfred Dreyfus in the infamous Dreyfus affair,

What are the three methods of identification?

It has been internationally accepted that primary identifiers is the most reliable method by which identification can be confirmed. These identifiers are ‘ Friction Ridge Analysis’, ‘Forensic Odontology’ and ‘DNA’.