This five-day, 40-hour course is designed to help crime scene investigators, detectives, attorneys, and medicolegal death investigators understand the steps involved in locating and documenting clandestine burials, exhuming unknown decedents from indigent cemeteries, and preserving surface scatter scenes from the perspective of the forensic anthropologist and crime scene investigator. Emphasis is placed on finding all the evidence without destroying its value. This course is instructed by an active forensic anthropologist and an experienced crime scene investigator with a master’s degree in anthropology.
This course involves hands-on, group learning where the students analyze mock outdoor crime scenes, preserve evidence, and write reports in preparation for their own forensic experiences with their respective agencies.
Upon successful completion of this course, the attendee should be able to understand and implement the process of locating and documenting buried bodies and surface scattered human remains; think critically about the type of experts needed to provide analyses integral to case resolution; recommend personnel and equipment needs for exhumations and surface scatter scenes.
Day 1: Locating and documenting the scene using informant information, aerial/satellite imagery, human remains detector dogs, ground penetrating radar, etc. Setting up the command station and handling the press.
Day 2: Human skeletal remains identification and estimating the numbers of individuals represented by the remains.
Day 3: Documenting soil, plant, insect, human remains, and associated physical evidence during a surface scene recovery.
Day 4: Documenting soil, plant, insect, human remains, and associated physical evidence during a buried scene recovery. Day 5: Case review and competency test