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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 76855 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Summary of the State of the Art of Forensic Microscopy
Author(s): J L Peterson; I T Silvergleit
Corporate Author: Forensic Sciences Foundation
United States of America
Date Published: Unknown
Page Count: 30
Sponsoring Agency: Forensic Sciences Foundation
Colorado Springs, CO 80904
US Dept of Justice

US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 78-NI-AX-0066
Type: Best Practice/State-of-the-Art Review
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The monograph summarizes the state of the art of forensic microscopy relative to crime laboratory development, management, and operation and to current practices employed in training forensic scientists.
Abstract: The introductory section discusses the development of microscopy and microchemical techniques and the lack of training of scientific personnel. The types of microscopes available today, such as the scanning electron microscope and the different types of optical microscopes, as well as their uses in the collaboration of science and law are reviewed briefly. Based on interviews with experts in the field, the report indicated that most forensic scientists have not explored microscopy's vast potential as a crime-fighting technique for reasons ranging from gaps in staff training and laboratory finances to individual attitudes and adminstrative priorities. Microscopy would be a viable, cost-effective, and powerful forensic technique if scientists were trained to use it effectively. The report urges immediate action if the use of forensic microscopy is to be sharply expanded in the near future. Such action will involve initiating additional educational and training programs at national, State, and local levels to upgrade the skills of forensic scientists and adminstrators and a coordinated effort to teach microscopy to college and university students before they enter the forensic sciences. Microscopy should be the principal technique used by crime laboratory examiners, and most physical crime evidence should routinely undergo microscopic examination. Footnotes and a 22-item bibliography is appended. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Crime laboratories; Electron microscopy; Evidence identification
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