Forensic Investigations,
Edition 1 An Introduction
By Brent E. Turvey and Stan Crowder

Publication Date: 18 Mar 2017

The terms forensic investigator and forensic investigation are part of our cultural identity. They can be found in the news, on television, and in film. They are invoked, generally, to imply that highly trained personnel will be collecting some form of physical evidence with eventual scientific results that cannot be questioned or bargained with. In other words, they are invoked to imply the reliability, certainty, and authority of a scientific inquiry.

Using cases from the authors’ extensive files, Forensic Investigations: An Introduction provides an overview of major subjects related to forensic inquiry and evidence examination. It will prepare Criminal Justice and Criminology students in forensic programs for more specialized courses and provide a valuable resource to newly employed forensic practitioners. Written by practicing and testifying forensic professionals from law enforcement, academia, mental health and the forensic sciences, this work offers a balanced scientific approach, based on the established literature, for broad appeal.

The purpose of this book is to help students and professionals rid themselves of the myths and misconceptions they have accumulated regarding forensic investigators and the subsequent forensic investigations they help to conduct. It will help the reader understand the role of the forensic investigator; the nature and variety of forensic investigations that take place in the justice system; and the mechanisms by which such investigations become worthy as evidence in court. Its goals are no loftier than that. However, they could not be more necessary to our understanding of what justice is, how it is most reliably achieved, and how it can be corrupted by those who are burdened with apathy and alternative motives.

Key Features

  • A primary text for instructors teaching forensic courses related to criminal and forensic investigation
  • Written by forensic professionals, currently in practice and testifying in court
  • Offers applied protocols for a broad range of forensic investigations
  • Augments theoretical constructs with recent, and relevant case studies and forensic reports
  • Based on the most recent scientific research, practice, and protocols related to forensic inquiry
About the author
By Brent E. Turvey, Forensic Criminologist Director, The Forensic Criminology Institute (Sitka, Alaska, United States); Senior Partner, Forensic Solutions, LLC (Sitka, Alaska, United States); Partner, The Behavioral Sciences Lab (Aguascalientes, Mexico) and Stan Crowder, Department of Sociology, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA, USA
Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Forensic Investigations: A Primer

  • Corpus Delicti
  • Forensic Necessity: Everybody Lies
  • The Forensic Investigator
  • Forensic Investigations: The Big Picture
  • Forensic Facts Versus Political Reality
  • Conclusions

Chapter 2. Law and Evidence

  • The Pillars of the Criminal Justice System
  • The Adversarial System
  • Scientific Fact Versus Legal Truth
  • Experts, Evidence, and Admissibility
  • Constitutional Rights
  • Conclusion

Chapter 3. Investigative Ethics

  • Understanding Ethics
  • Duty of Care
  • Bias
  • An Ethical Canon for the Forensic Investigator
  • Conclusion

Chapter 4. Investigators and the Scientific Method

  • Reflection and Metacognition
  • Critical Thinking
  • The Availability Heuristic and the Problem With Experience
  • Science Versus Scientific Method
  • Science as Falsification
  • Logical Fallacies
  • Conclusion

Chapter 5. Crime Scene Investigation and Analysis

  • The CSI Effect
  • The FBI Effect
  • Crime Scene Investigation, Reconstruction, and Analysis
  • Forensic Relevance

Chapter 6. Crime Scene Processing

  • Crime Scenes
  • Crime Scene Processing
  • Crime Scene Processing: A Descriptive Tiered System
  • Crime Scene Processing Protocols
  • Conclusion

Chapter 7. Forensic Victimology

  • Forensic Victimology: Evidence of Context
  • Goals
  • Victim Exposure Analysis
  • Victimology Guidelines
  • Conclusion

Chapter 8. The Sexual Assault Examination

  • The Role of Reconstruction
  • The “Team¿
  • Forensic Nursing
  • Sexual Assault Examination Protocols
  • Evidence of Sexual Activity
  • Clothing
  • False Positives: Conditions That Mimic Abuse
  • Toxicology
  • Presentation of Findings

Chapter 9. Medicolegal Death Investigation: Protocols and Practice

  • Terms and Definitions
  • Protocols for Medicolegal Death Investigators
  • Autopsy Protocols
  • The National Association of Medical Examiners Standards
  • Medicolegal Failures: A Top 10 List
  • Conclusion

Chapter 10. Forensic Interviews

  • Terms and Definitions
  • Goals
  • Stakes and Consequences
  • Interview Preparation and Checklists
  • Documentation and Recording
  • Interview Protocols
  • Generic Interview Questions: A Starter Kit
  • Advice and Discussion
  • False Confessions
  • Continuing Education and Professional Development

Chapter 11. The Polygraph: Uses and Misuses

  • The Test
  • Polygraph Research
  • Summary

Chapter 12. Investigating Allegations of Police Torture: Forensic Protocols and Psychological Assessment

  • Prevalence
  • Role of the Forensic Investigator
  • Defining Torture
  • Coercive Interrogation v. Torture
  • Behaviors Constituting Torture
  • Diagnostic Categories Related to Torture
  • The Psychological Effects and Impact of Torture
  • Torture: Forensic Interview Protocols for the Mental Health Professional
  • Conclusion

Chapter 13. Forensic Investigations for Court: Probation, Sentencing, Mitigation Issues in Capital Cases

  • Juvenile Court Probation Systems
  • Adult Probation
  • Capital Murder Mitigation Investigations

Chapter 14. Oklahoma v. Elvis Thacker: Evaluating Victimology, Victim Sexual Assault Evidence, Suspect Torture by Law Enforcement, and the Quality of a Forensic Investigation

  • The Plea and the Confession
  • The Evidence, the Confession, and Suspect Torture
  • The State of the Case
Book details
ISBN: 9780128006801
Page Count: 414
Retail Price : £66.99
  • Houck, The Science of Crime Scenes, 9780123864642, Jul 2012, $99.95
  • Haag, Shooting Incident Reconstruction 2e, 9780123822413, Jun 2011, $99.95
  • Chisum and Turvey, Crime Reconstruction 2e, 9780123864604, Jun 2011, $89.95
  • Turvey, Forensic Victimology 2e, 9780124080843, Sep 2013, $89.95
  • Lee, Henry Lee’s Crime Scene Handbook, 9780124408302, Jun 2001, $109.00

Entry level forensic practitioners, forensic science programs, legal community, sociology / criminology programs, and criminal justice programs