Rep. calls for hearings on multimillion-dollar Lincoln hat

SPRINGFIELD — Rep. Tim Butler, R-Springfield, said Wednesday the Illinois House should hold hearings to get to the bottom of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library Foundation and a hat purportedly owned by Abraham Lincoln that the foundation shelled out millions to obtain.

Framed By Your Own Cells: How DNA Evidence Imprisons The Innocent

FORBES- Modern technologies can now detect and analyze DNA from samples comprised of only 16 cells. But due to the touch-transfer properties of DNA, determining how those cells reached the surface on which they were found is impossible. Tiny amounts of touch-transferred DNA have placed people at locations they had never visited and implicated people for crimes they did not commit.

Corn in the bones: The science behind North Korea war remains

JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii — When war remains arrive at the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency to be reunited with waiting families, there’s always a question: How do they know for sure who it is?
DPAA laboratory director John Byrd and forensic anthropologist Jennie Jin, who leads the Korea War team, walked reporters through the science behind how they will identify 55 boxes of remains returned by North Korea this summer.

GCC Forensics Exhibition & Conference – the Region’s Leading Forensics Event – Announces Agenda

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, September 18, 2018 /PRNewswire/ —
The Conference Agenda for the 2nd edition of the GCC Forensics Conference, organised by Clarion Events, has been released. Following the unprecedented success of the inaugural edition of the event last year, there was an overwhelming response to the Call for Abstracts and the agenda is packed full of first-rate speakers from around the world.

DNA analysis helps identify Africa’s major ivory smugglers

Researchers in the US have used DNA analysis to reveal that there are three major exporters who are illegally smuggling the largest amounts of ivory out of African ports.
The scientists genetically matched elephant tusks from large ivory seizures and then compared this data to other details including the port from where the ivory was exported.

Forensic Science is in My DNA

Working in law enforcement is as tough as it is rewarding. I got my start in 1968 as a beat cop in Ann Arbor, Michigan. My initial years on the force eventually led me to a 50-year career in forensic science.
I’ve seen a lot of changes in that time.

Forensic conference seeks global standards on DNA

Forensic experts at an international conference said on Monday that unified standards and regulated procedures in DNA identification will play a bigger role in fighting crime and safeguarding public safety by increasing criminal cooperation.
The Silk Road Forensic Consortium provides a platform for forensic experts from home and abroad to exchange ideas and challenges, and it can do more in DNA identification studies and applications, the experts said at the 3rd Conference of Silk Road Forensic Consortium in Yantai, Shandong province.

Under the Microscope – Kate Stevenson

SWGDAM outlines validation requirements for individual laboratories which include concordance, reproducibility, accuracy and precision, sensitivity and stochastic effects and mixture studies. The details of these requirements are informative but balancing of sample numbers versus robust results to establish conclusions and subsequent guidelines is more tricky.
In her presentation at ISHI, Kate Stevenson (a Senior Scientist at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd (ESR) will describe the lessons learnt from validation studies at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd (ESR). The goal being an understanding of the performance of each kit or instrument including its limitations when used on casework like samples.
We sat down with Kate and asked her what considerations a lab should think through prior to starting a validation and the differences between validating quantification kits versus STR amplification kits.

Male lineage helps identify missing service members

DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del. – The Armed Forces Medical Examiner System’s Armed Forces DNA Identification Labratory briefed families of missing service members at the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency’s latest family member update in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 8, 2018.
The DPAA conducts periodic and annual government briefings for families of service members who are missing in action. These events are designed to keep family members informed of those still missing and to discuss in detail the latest information available about their specific case. Nearly 350 families participated in this months’ FMU making it the most attended FMU since Dallas, Texas, 2012.

Chris Watts case: DNA evidence could prove to be ‘smoking gun’ if judge grants prosecution’s motion

A judge could rule on some of the motions Thursday afternoon or evening. Prosecutors have asked Watts to provide them and police with buccal swabs for DNA, finger and palm prints and photographs of Watts’ hands.

“Hundreds” of crimes will soon be solved using DNA databases, genealogist predicts

Suspects in hundreds of unsolved murders and rapes will be identified using public DNA databases in the near future, a prominent genealogist predicted during MIT Technology Review’s EmTech conference today.
CeCe Moore, head of a genealogy unit at Parabon Nanolabs, predicted that “dozens” of cases will be solved in coming months in the US.

Biologists checked out this NBA player’s DNA for clues to his immense height

As a first-round draft pick from Brigham Young University, Shawn Bradley caused a hubbub during the 1993 NBA draft. That is because he was 7’ 6” tall.
That’s five inches taller than Shaquille O’Neal, the NBA superstar drafted the year earlier. Bradley could touch the rim without lifting his feet.
Now researchers who have had a look at Bradley’s DNA say they figured out why he’s so tall.

9/11 identifications: 17 years later, the largest forensic investigation in U.S. history continues

The bone had been cleaned, cut, pulverized, chemically treated and incubated five times before it produced enough DNA for a positive identification.
The first two attempts were nonstarters.

Justice Officials: Schimel and DOJ Solving 20-Year Rape Kit Problem In 3 Years

MADISON – There’s been a lot of finger-pointing in the story of Wisconsin’s long untested rape kits.
No doubt there have been failures in a system that for decades allowed thousands of rape kits to pile up in law enforcement evidence shelves and hospital storage rooms.
The thousands of backlogged rape kits – sexual assault forensic exams used to preserve DNA evidence that could lead to the arrest and conviction of an offender – extend as far back as the 1980s.
But in a fever-pitch election year the mainstream media and the Democratic Party political machine have focused much of their fire on Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel, a Republican, and his Department of Justice.

‘We Don’t Give Up’: Identifying America’s Long-Lost Soldiers

The POW/MIA forensic lab in Hawaii has more than 1,400 service members who have been missing in action, some for decades.