Category Archives: Physical evidence

Criminal evidence (inc. adhesive tape, rope, soil, trace evidence, fibres, textiles, dyes, poisons, fertilisers) in relation to homicide, suicide, sexual assault, break & enter, hit & run etc.
Includes explosives, IEDs (Improvised explosive devices) oil spills and comparisons, physical evidence examination

Financial adviser faces court on charge of murdering wealthy Gold Coast client

Gold Coast Bulletin Emmaline Stigwood April 24, 2015

A FINANCIAL adviser who allegedly murdered a wealthy Gold Coast client with a hammer before stuffing the body into a toolbox was “not himself” on the day, a court has heard.
Statements from work colleagues of Trung The Ma were aired yesterday in court as defence lawyers got permission to examine the witnesses at an upcoming committal hearing.

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Thirty years in jail for a single hair: the FBI’s ‘mass disaster’ of false conviction

The Guardian Ed Pilkington 22 April 2015

George Perrot has spent almost 30 years in prison thanks to a single hair. It was discovered by an FBI agent on the bedsheet of a 78-year-old woman who had been raped by a burglar in her home in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1985.
Perrot, then 17, was put on trial, despite the absence of physical evidence tying him to the crime scene. There was no semen. There was no blood. And so there was no way to conduct a conclusive DNA test.
Even the victim testified that the defendant looked nothing like her attacker: he had a short haircut and was clean-shaven, while Perrot had a long shaggy mop, a moustache and a goatee beard.
But there was that strand of hair. At a key stage in the 1992 rape and burglary trial, an FBI agent named Wayne Oakes took the witness stand, describing himself to the jury as an expert in hair and textile fibers – as would so many of the agency’s trial witnesses, in condemning hundreds of people to long prison sentences.

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Link to article abstract

How A Forensic Scientist Uses Dirt To Solve Murders

Gizmodo Sarah Zhang 22 April 2015

Stuck to the bottom of your shoe is humble dirt that gives away where you’ve been and what you’ve been up to. It’s up to science to figure out it out. Nature has a fascinating profile of forensic geologist Lorna Dawson, who has used soil to solve decades-old cold cases.
OK, so CSI: Soil probably quite doesn’t have the hilarious tech buzzword potential of CSI: Cyber, but there are a lot of high-tech methods behind forensic geology, too. Dawson has been one of those people pushing the field beyond microscopes. For example, she has adapted methods from chromatography and mass spectrometry, which read out the molecular makeup of samples.

Read more: http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2015/04/how-a-forensic-scientist-uses-dirt-to-solve-murders/

Link to Nature article: http://www.nature.com/news/forensic-science-the-soil-sleuth-1.17373

Forensic science: The soil sleuth

Nature | News Feature | 21 April 2015 | Chelsea Wald

At the James Hutton Institute in Aberdeen, UK, Dawson runs one of the world’s only labs dedicated to forensic soil science, where in the past decade she has worked on more than 70 cases from around the globe. At the time of the murders, soil was rarely used as evidence, and techniques were “elementary”, she says. But today, soil evidence regularly leads to bodies, overturns alibis and reveals the origins of artefacts.  Continue reading...

Update: Suspicious death investigation, Bungalow

QPS News 18 April 2015

A man has been charged following a death that occurred in Bungalow yesterday.

Police were called to a unit on Winkworth Street around 11am where a man was found with injuries to his chest.

He was transported to hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

A 49-year-old Bungalow man has been charged with one count of murder and is due to appear in the Cairns Magistrates Court today.

Investigations are continuing.

http://mypolice.qld.gov.au/blog/2015/04/18/update-suspicious-death-investigation-bungalow/

Toowoomba mosque set on fire for second time

Brisbane Times Jorge Branco April 17, 2015

Police are investigating the second suspicious fire at a Toowoomba mosque this year.
Emergency services were called to the West Street mosque about 1.50am Friday.
They extinguished the fire but police said the inside of the building suffered “major damage”.
Police set up a crime scene and declared the fire suspicious. Investigations are continuing.

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Townsville police no closer to finding Julie Hutchinson’s body as forensics search home

Townsville Bulletin CHRISTIE ANDERSON  April 16, 2015

THE investigation into the alleged murder of mother-of-two Julie Hutchinson is focused on her home as the search for her body enters its sixth day.
It comes after her husband Michael Hutchinson fronted court on Tuesday charged with her murder and interfering with her corpse.
Police investigations yesterday were focused on the couple’s Condon home.

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