Combining a Line Search with an Alternate Light Source When Searching for Skeletal Remains

dc.contributor.advisorChristensen, Angi M
dc.contributor.authorBrown, Tracy E
dc.creatorBrown, Tracy E
dc.description.abstractSearches for human remains in outdoor wooded settings are typically done during the day to allow for the best possible light. As part of the process of decomposition, the skeletal system begins to become disarticulated; this natural process is sometimes altered by scavengers. In all cases, it is important to attempt collection of as many remains as possible. In the cases when remains may be fragmented and/or scavenged, it is important to ensure as many fragments are located and collected as possible. For these scenarios, it would be advantageous to make use of the fluorescent properties of bone. Once the crime scene recovery is complete, to include measurements and mapping of the incomplete skeletal fragments found during the daylight, searchers would find that returning to the scene at night and using an alternate light source (ALS) to locate any final remains is to their benefit. This research involves the comparison of day, night, and combination day/night searches. Upon completion of the data collection, it can be stated that any search involving the use of an ALS will outperform a search that does not use the ALS. When comparing the night search to the combination day/night search there are minimal differences, it is the comparison of the day search to the combination day/night search that shows significant differences in the number of remains collected. For bone fragments less than 1.5 inches, a greater proportion (p<0.001) of bones were located when combining a daytime line search with a nighttime ALS search when compared with a daytime line search alone.
dc.subjectForensic science
dc.subjectAlternate light source
dc.subjectSkeletal remains
dc.subjectSearch methods
dc.titleCombining a Line Search with an Alternate Light Source When Searching for Skeletal Remains Science Mason University's of Science in Forensic Science


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