MAY 06, 2020 9:00 AM PDT

Keynote Presentation: Pattern Evidence Reconstruction

  • Henry C. Lee, PhD

    Chia Professor, University of New Haven Chief Emeritus (ret.), Connecticut State Police Director, Research & Training Center


Crime scene investigation is more than just processing or documentation of crime scenes, nor is it just the collection or packaging of physical evidence. It is the first step and the most crucial step of any forensic investigation. The foundation of all forensic investigations is based on the ability of the crime scene investigator or forensic scientist to recognize the potential pattern evidence, large or small, visible or latent, exculpatory or exculpatory, at the crime scene. The subsequent examination and identification of the pattern evidence along with determination of the possible source or origin of the evidence, that is, its individualization, are the next steps in the forensic investigation process. Proper crime scene investigation is the starting point for the process of establishing what has happened, when and where happed, who is involved and why and how it occurred. Of course, careful processing, documentation, and collection of pattern evidence are integral parts of the ‘investigation process’ and crime scene reconstruction. If the potential pattern evidence was not recognized, or collected, or properly reconstructed, the forensic value of this piece evidence is lost.  Despite available current forensic technologies, specialized equipment and personnel, the integrity of forensic services system and the effectiveness utilization of physical evidence in crime solving are only as good as the integrity of the crime scene investigator and the objective legal system that supports those functions. Routine and new crime scene pattern reconstruction concepts, and cases will be used to demonstrate the newest methods and techniques used in crime scene reconstruction.

Learning Objectives:

1. What is pattern evidence and where to find it at crime scene

2. There are several steps in the process of classification and reconstruction of pattern evidence

3. The process moves from pattern recognition, comparison, identification of class characteristics toward reconstruction

4. The methods of pattern evidence comparison and pattern reconstruction

5. The value and limitation of pattern evidence reconstruction

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