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Forensic Science

December 9, 2008 | Sarah Weinman, Weinman writes the Dark Passages column at
Patricia Cornwell's name comes with more than a whiff of myth and expectation. Almost every woman writing thrillers with extreme violence gets compared to Cornwell's bestselling work featuring forensic pathologist Kay Scarpetta. Interviews focus less on the books and more on Cornwell's Armani suits, personal security concerns or her obsession with solving the Jack the Ripper murders.
October 8, 2013 | By Anne Harnagel
It's elementary--or is it? Sherlock Holmes and his investigative powers are the subject of an interactive exhibition opening Thursday at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry in Portland. Visitors will learn about Holmes and his methods, the world that inspired Holmes' creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, and the history of forensic science. Expect footprints and splatter patterns too.  Museum-goers also will have a chance to develop their detective powers by using a book of clues instead of the museum map while trying to crack a Sherlock Holmes mystery written especially for the show by Conan Doyle biographer Daniel Stashower.
A few years ago, when deoxyribonucleic acid was the latest and hottest tongue-twister to hit the forensic community, Keith Inman recalls that there might have been a single session on the topic at the annual forensics convention.
May 16, 2004 | Wayne Parry, Associated Press Writer
Near the tennis courts at Centenary College, a student is itching to set something on fire, and only too happy to oblige when asked to toss a lighted match into a plastic garbage can filled with newspaper. A thin wisp of smoke appears after a few seconds and flames curl lazily upward. Another trash pail, this one filled with paper doused in gasoline, is set ablaze.
February 25, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
On March 1, 1957, a 7-month-old girl named Jeaneen Marie Klokow died at home. Sheboygan, Wisc., investigators ruled that she'd fallen off her mother's couch by accident. For decades, that was that. Except she'd been killed. And decades would separate the medical advances and nagging consciences that resulted in her mother's guilty plea to second-degree murder in Sheboygan on Monday morning. “It's really an incredible thing,” Sheboygan County District Atty. Joe DeCecco said by phone on Monday, and he would know: Prosecuting someone nearly 56 years after the fact required improvisation.
January 26, 1989 | STEVEN R. CHURM, Times Staff Writer
Bone fragments found near the desert campsite where Laura Bradbury was last seen more than four years ago apparently are the remains of the missing Huntington Beach child, authorities said for the first time Wednesday. Acknowledging that a sophisticated DNA analysis, known as "genetic fingerprinting," had been performed on the skull fragments, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said that the genetic composition of the fragments was "consistent with Laura Bradbury."
November 23, 1987 | JANNY SCOTT, Times Staff Writer
Several small patches of dried blood and the esoteric techniques used to decipher the blood's genetic secrets have become a hotly disputed issue in the high-profile murder case against former California Highway Patrol Officer Craig Peyer. The prosecution hopes to use as evidence in Peyer's upcoming trial blood stains found on a sweat shirt and boot worn by murder victim Cara Knott--stains that prosecutors say their analyses will show are unlikely to have come from anyone other than Peyer.
November 13, 1997 | From Times Wire Services
DNA evidence, used for years to bolster criminal cases, now is technologically advanced enough to specifically identify murderers, rapists and other criminals, the FBI said Wednesday. The improvement in technology has spawned a change in FBI policy that has already helped convict a Wisconsin rapist, even though he had four alibi witnesses that distanced him from the crime, FBI officials said at a news conference.
March 25, 1994 | KAY HWANGBO
Magnum the dog has a nose for narcotics. The golden retriever--a seven-year veteran of the Port of Los Angeles police department--showed how keen his olfactory senses were at a demonstration put on by detectives at James Monroe High School in North Hills. After containers of marijuana, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine were hidden in a music classroom, Detective Leo Stekkinger led Magnum on a search of the room.
February 16, 1990 | GEORGE FRANK
Orange County's new genetic testing laboratory, with its computers, radioactive incubators, freezers and cameras, was officially opened Thursday with authorities saying it will be ready for its first case in two weeks.
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