Owing to its unique value in illuminating and revealing latent aspects of a crime, forensic science has become a mainstay of the justice system. In some cases, forensic evidence emerges as a major point of contention and battleground, when mutually recognized by opposing parties as the tipping point or tie-breaker of a case, crucial for determining the legal outcome one way or the other.
Forensic reconstruction is the application of various scientific tools to uncover the “Who”, “What”, “When”, “Where”, “Why” and “How” of an incident or a crime. It entails a coherent evaluation and a holistic perspective of diverse types of evidence, and how each piece of evidence relates to the crime. Reconstruction is a multi-faceted examination that requires scientific actions, reasoning and thought processes. It combines the otherwise separate and fragmentary elements of evidence into a single connected whole. Reconstruction is not merely a summary or structured compilation of forensic findings by experts. It involves scene analysis, forensic laboratory examinations, and an overarching critical analysis, interpretation and synthesis of all known evidence and facts. A successful reconstruction requires the forensic scientist to clearly understand the value, significance and limitations of each piece of physical evidence.
Forensic reconstruction is an essential forensic tool for the administration of justice. When employed effectively, forensic reconstruction augments the value of the evidence associated with a case, and can assist the Court in reaching an informed decision on the case.
Through this talk, participants will gain an understanding of the following:
- Types of reconstructions using trace evidence, damage and marks evidence and bloodstain patterns
- Synergies between different forensic disciplines
- Value, limitations and pitfalls of forensic reconstructions