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Numbers Meets CSI: Qualifying Value of Forensic Evidence

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Nick Stokes of CSI using fingerprints to identify the murdered and Charlie Eppes of Numbers solving crimes via mathematical equations lead many people to assume that forensic science is a highly technical field relying on experts that always have a definitive answer about culpability. In fact, forensic statistics is a relatively new field that is working to establish investigative techniques and quantitative methods that ensure accuracy in suspect identification. There are about 25 statisticians worldwide working in forensics science. Two of these happen to be in the mathematics and statistics department at South Dakota State University and have recently received a $780,300 grant to advance the science.

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No Silver Bullet: Iowa State Study Identifies Risk Factors of Youth Charged with Murder

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News of a school shooting or a homicide involving a teenage suspect always leads to the question of why? It is human nature to want an explanation, but too often, the rush to judgment clouds reality, said Matt DeLisi, a professor of sociology at Iowa State.

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How Do Authorities Determine Time, Cause of Death?

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New Approaches Needed for People with Serious Mental Illnesses in Criminal Justice System

Responding to the large number of people with serious mental illnesses in the criminal justice system will require more than mental health services, according to a new report.

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Video Blinds Us to the Evidence

Where people look when watching video evidence varies wildly and has profound consequences for bias in legal punishment decisions, a team of researchers at NYU and Yale Law School has found. This study raises questions about why people fail to be objective when confronted with video evidence.

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Lone Wolf Terrorists Target Police More, but Attacks Not More Frequent

Lone wolf terrorist attacks are not on the rise as popular culture might lead one to believe — but the attacks are more personal, use high-velocity firearms and targeting military and police.

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New Study Out of Villanova University Finds Release of Violent Video Games May Actually Reduce Real-World Violence

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Researchers Develop Improved Means Of Detecting Mismatched DNA

Researchers at Johns Hopkins have identified a highly sensitive means of analyzing very tiny amounts of DNA. The discovery, they say, could increase the ability of forensic scientists to match genetic material in some criminal investigations. It could also prevent the need for a painful, invasive test given to transplant patients at risk of rejecting their donor organs and replace it with a blood test that reveals traces of donor DNA.

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Study: Web Based Training Can Reduce Campus Rape

Web-based training targeted at college-aged men is an effective tool for reducing the number of sexual assaults on U.S. campuses, according to a researcher in the School of Public Health at Georgia State University.

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Scientific Risk Assessments May Result in More Equitable Sentences

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Chris Slobogin of Vanderbilt Law School backs the use of scientific risk assessment in criminal sentencing.

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