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NCJ Number: 69215 Find in a Library
Title: SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE IN RAPE PROSECUTION
Journal: UMKC LAW REVIEW  Volume:48  Issue:2  Dated:(WINTER 1980)  Pages:216-236
Author(s): W R RAPPS
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 21
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE AVAILABLE AND DEVELOPING FORENSIC TECHNOLOGIES APPLICABLE TO RAPE PROSECUTION IN MISSOURI ARE DESCRIBED TO ENHANCE KNOWLEDGE OF SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE THAT CAN BE USED TO PROSECUTE SUSPECTED RAPISTS.
Abstract: MISSOURI'S REVISED STATUTES ON SEX OFFENSES, WHICH SEPARATE OFFENSES INVOLVING INTERCOURSE INTO DIFFERENT CRIMES ACCORDING TO THE CIRCUMSTANCES, ARE DESCRIBED. THE POWERFUL CAPABILITIES OF FORENSIC SCIENCE TO INFLUENCE THE OUTCOME OF A SEX OFFENSES TRIAL ARE NOTED. PROSECUTORS SHOULD BE AWARE THAT THE MISSOURI RULES OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE ALLOW, UPON MOTION BY THE STATE AND A SHOWING OF GOOD CAUSE, THE ISSUANCE OF A CURT ORDER REQUIRING THE DEFENDANT TO BE FINGERPRINTED; GIVE UP FINGERNAIL SCRAPINGS; GIVE SAMPLES OF BLOOD, HAIR, AND OTHER BODY MATERIALS; AND SUBMIT TO REASONABLE MEDICAL EXAMINATION. IN INSTANCES WHERE THERE ARE NO PHYSICAL MANIFESTATIONS OF AN ATTACK, WHICH OFTEN OCCURS WHEN THE VICTIM HAS DELAYED ISSUING A COMPLAINT, PSYCHIATRIC TESTIMONY ABOUT THE VICTIM'S EMOTIONAL SYMPTOMS CAN BOLSTER THE CASE. IN CASES WHERE THE VICTIM SUBMITTED UNDER FORCE, THE VICTIM'S CLOTHING CAN BE SUBMITTED IF IT IS RELEVANT TO ANY FACT AT ISSUE. ALSO, THE AUTHENTICITY OF FORENSIC EVIDENCE OF SEXUAL PENETRATION IS DISCUSSED IN RELATION TO (1) THE PRESENCE OF MALE SPERMATOZOA, (2) THE ACID PHOSPHATASE LEVEL IN THE VAGINAL TRACT, (3) THE PRESENCE OF CHOLINE, AND (4) THE PRESENCE OF A PROTEIN-SPECIFIC SEMEN MARKER IN THE VAGINAL TRACT. FORENSIC TECHNIQUES DESCRIBED THAT CAN BE USED TO CORROBORATE THE VICTIM'S TESTIMONY AS TO THE IDENTITY OF HER ASSAILANT INCLUDE BLOOD TYPING, SEMEN TYPING THROUGH SECRETOR ANALYSIS, SAMPLES OF HAIR FOUND ON THE VICTIM AND AT THE SCENE OF THE CRIME, FINGERPRINTS, AND A COMPARISON OF THE IMPRINT OF AN ASSAILANT'S TEETH WITH THE INDIVIDUAL CHARACTERISTICS OF HIS TEETH AND MOUTH. OTHER INVESTIGATIVE AIDS, INCLUDING HYPNOSIS AND POLYGRAPHS, ARE ALSO DESCRIBED. BOTH PROSECUTING AND DEFENSE ATTORNEYS SHOULD KEEP ABREAST OF DEVELOPING FORENSIC TECHNIQUES THAT CAN BE USED BY EITHER SIDE IN A SEX OFFENSE TRIAL. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED.
Index Term(s): Blood/body fluid analysis; Dental analysis; Forensic medicine; Judicial decisions; Laws and Statutes; Missouri; Rape; Rules of evidence; Tissue analysis
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=69215

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