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Class characteristics of physical evidence

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Address the following :
Specifically, what are class characteristics of physical evidence? Explain in detail.
Provide 3 different examples that illustrate your explanation
What else must exist for evidence with class characteristics to be used in court? Explain.
Can a type of physical evidence be considered a class characteristic at one crime scene and an individual characteristic at another? Why or why not? Explain in detail.
Provide 2 different examples that illustrate your explanation.
What must an investigator consider regarding the use of class characteristics as evidence in court? Explain.
What must an investigator consider regarding the use of individual characteristics as evidence in court? Explain.
Be sure to reference all sources using APA style.

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Specifically, what are class characteristics of physical evidence? Explain in detail.

Class characteristics can be described as any general characteristics that define a category of items or objects, but lack the capability to define individuality in reference to these items or objects. Quintessentially, investigators use class characteristics to narrow the pattern found at a scene to specific and individual characteristics. Once these individual characteristics are narrowed down, they can be put into databases to find the perpetrator of a crime. The FBI has created a database for examining class characteristics such as shoe and tire impressions, which can eventually be used to link a suspect's individual ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses the use of physical evidence in court.

See Also This Related BrainMass Solution

Criminalistics- Introduction to Forensic Science

1. The defense has filed a motion to suppress the footprint evidence, handwriting analysis, and the evidence obtained using alternative light sources gathered at the crime scene at Helene Valentine's home. She has asked you to prepare a 3-5 page paper that explains the processes used in gathering that evidence along with cited sources that she can use to bolster her argument against suppressing the evidence.

(crime scene- Helen Valentine was found deceased in the master bedroom of her upstairs, two-bedroom apartment, at 11:58 AM on Tuesday morning. Upon arrival, the investigators noticed an empty bottle of vodka on the floor of her bedroom, and two shot glasses- half-full with vodka, on the kitchen table. There were also three visible dust footprints on the linoleum floor in the bathroom and kitchen. The television was on and the refrigerator was slightly ajar. Some half-eaten cheese and crackers were located on the countertops in the kitchen, and the smell of bleach was very apparent in the kitchen. Valentine was found in a prone position, completely nude, with her head towards the foot post of her bed, facing the wall. Valentine's entire apartment was a mess, but there does not seem to be any real signs of struggle. Investigators noticed a few cuts and bruises on Valentine's wrist. After closer examination, investigators noticed a small gunshot wound on her left temple. The weapon was found in very close proximity to Valentine's right side, next to her right shoulder. The three windows to Valentine's apartment were open and the front door was unlocked. Neighbors provided statements, stating that Valentine was a nudist and liked to flash people who passed by her windows. Investigators also found an apparent suicide note on the computer screen in the second bedroom (the computer was still on, but was in hibernating mode). Valentine's bank check; made out for $1,006.57 to a nudist colony resort and spa, lay on her computer desk. In the investigator's initial inspection, blood could be seen in the second bedroom and on the windowsill of one Valentine's apartment windows).

Be sure to reference all sources using APA style.

Instructor Comments:
Include an abstract paragraph (125-50 words)
Describe specific evidence collection techniques used in gathering footprint evidence /shoe impression evidence.
How would this evidence be analyzed in the lab?
Please mention specific laboratory techniques and discuss the role of the examiner.
Discuss specific evidence collection techniques using gathering handwriting evidence .
How would this evidence be analyzed in a lab? Please mention specific laboratory techniques and discuss the role of the examiner.
Apply information that you have learned in class such as - ex. known exemplars
Discuss in detail, the process of filing a motion to suppress physical evidence.
Again, make sure that this presentation is balanced. Do not focus too much on one area of the paper-make sure all areas are addressed equally.
Do not forget your FOUR required scholarly references. I want to see RESEARCH.

2. Using the Internet, your textbook, or any other available materials, research a notorious criminal case where shoe impression, tire impression, handwriting analysis, alternative light sources, computer, or Internet evidence was presented as evidence of special interest to the case. Briefly summarize the case and provide citation information so that your classmates and instructor may easily find the material included in your response. Please free to expand your discussion if the case you are researching presents more than one type of evidence.
Based on the knowledge and information you have learned in class, describe the proper protocol/procedures that may be used by a criminalist to examine such evidence (discuss proper collection, preservation, and testing analysis associated with the evidence).

Prepare 4-5 paragraphs and be sure to reference all sources using APA style.

Instructor comments:
Make sure that you research a case that either used shoe impressions, tire impression evidence, handwriting analysis, alternative light source evidence, computer evidence, or Internet evidence.
Please note that your case does not need to include ALL of the following evidence.
If your case includes more than one type of evidence, please note that as well.
Please provide specifics about the investigation/ background of the case. Were there any problems associated with handling the evidence in this case?
Taking what you have learned from class thus far, provide a thorough discussion of how a criminalist may: properly collect, preserve, and analyze the evidence presented in this case (best practices).
Discuss some of the specific laboratory techniques that may be conducted to analyze the evidence. (If you are researching an older case, provide information about how that evidence might be analyzed today).
Although it is not mandatory to find case information in the school's library, you still need to provide appropriate citation for the material that you present in your discussion board.

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