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Criminal Justice: Forensic Science
Resources and library services for Criminal Justice students.
Forensic science can be simply defined as the application of science to the law. In criminal cases forensic scientists are often involved in the search for and examination of physical traces, which might be useful for establishing or excluding an association between someone suspected of committing a crime and the scene of the crime or victim. DNA evidence has become an increasingly powerful tool for solving both violent crimes and property crimes, such as homicide, sexual assault, and burglaries.
Forensic crime laboratories are responsible for examining and reporting on physical evidence collected during criminal investigations for federal, state, and local jurisdictions. The nation’s forensic crime laboratories receive requests for a variety of forensic services, such as DNA analysis, controlled substance identification, and latent fingerprint examination. DNA evidence collected from a crime scene can implicate or eliminate a suspect, similar to the use of fingerprints.
Provided by Science & Engineering Librarian Cynthia Holt of the Gelman Library at George Washington University, Washington, D.C., this webliography is written for librarians who serve a scientific or technical clientele, and any person interested in learning more about forensic science information services. The scope of this webliography is to point people to some of the best resources on the web for forensic science research and information. This is by no means comprehensive, and is focused on web sites based in the United States.
The Innocence Project was founded in 1992 by Barry C. Scheck and Peter J. Neufeld at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University to assist prisoners who could be proven innocent through DNA testing. To date, more than 300 people in the United States have been exonerated by DNA testing, including 18 who served time on death row. These people served an average of 13 years in prison before exoneration and release.
The NFSTC provides training, assessment, research, and technology assistance to the justice and forensic communities. Information on programs, DNA/GPA program, DNA training, forensic training, and forensic technology is provided.
The NLECTC plays a critical role in enabling the Office of Science and Technology to carry out its critical mission to assist state, local, tribal, and federal law enforcement, corrections, and other criminal justice agencies in addressing their technology needs and challenges. Has links to JUSTNET news, publications, TechBeat, and AskNLECTC.
In Reddy's own words: "My name is Reddy P. Chamakura. I am a retired forensic scientist with Police Laboratory, New York City Police Department. I took retirement after spending 36 years in forensic field.
Education: B.S. and M.S. in chemistry, degree in law, diploma in criminal law (from India) and 2 years of graduate work in Forensic Science at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York.
Speciality Areas Worked: forensic chemistry/narcotics, research and training, questioned documents, and ballistics."
From the National Library of Medicine a complementary web site to its exhibition visible proofs, the history of forensic medicine. Site includes information about the exhibition, galleries, education, and resources.