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Commingled Human Remains

  • ID: 2857096
  • Book
  • July 2014
  • 544 Pages
  • Elsevier Science and Technology
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Commingled human remains are encountered in situations ranging from prehistoric ossuaries to recent mass fatality incidents. Commingled Human Remains: Methods in Recovery, Analysis, and Identification brings together tools from diverse sources within the forensic science community to offer a set of comprehensive approaches to resolving issues associated with commingled remains. This edition focuses on forensic situations, although some examples from prehistoric contexts are also addressed. Commingling of bones and other body parts is a major obstacle to individual identification that must be addressed before other forensic determinations or research can proceed. Regardless of the cause for the commingling (transportation disaster, terrorist attack, natural disaster, genocide, etc.) it is critical that the proper experts are involved and that the proper techniques are employed to achieve the greatest success in making identifications. Resolution of commingling nearly always requires consideration of multiple lines of evidence that cross the disciplinary lines of modern forensic science. The use of archaeology, DNA, and forensic anthropology are several areas that are critical in this process and these are core topics presented in this book. Even a relatively "simple” mass fatality event can become very complicated once body fragmentation and commingling occur. Expectations associated with all phases of the process from recovery of remains to their final identification and release to next of kin must be managed appropriately.

  • A powerful resource for those working in the forensic sciences who need to plan for and/or address the complex challenges associated with commingled and fragmentary human remains
  • Written by an international group of the foremost forensic scientists presenting their research and candid experiences of dealing with commingled human remains, offering recommendations and providing "lessons learned" which can be invaluable to others who find themselves facing similar challenges
  • Contains chapters on remains recovery, laboratory analysis, case studies, and broader topics such as mass fatality management and ethical considerations

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1: Commingling Analysis: Historical and Methodological Perspectives
2: Spatial Analysis of Mass Grave Mapping Data to Assist in the Reassociation of Disarticulated and Commingled Human Remains
3: Recovery Methods for Cremated Commingled Remains: Analysis and Interpretation of Small Fragments Using a Bioarchaeological Approach
4: More Pieces of the Puzzle: F.B.I. Evidence Response Team Approaches to Scenes with Commingled Evidence
5: The Use of Radiology in Mass Fatality Events
6: A Practical Method for Detecting Commingled Remains Using Epiphyseal Union
7: Application of Portable X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) for Sorting Commingled Human Remains
8: Osteometric Sorting
9: Estimating the Number of Individuals Represented by Commingled Human Remains: A Critical Evaluation of Methods
10: Assessment of Commingled Human Remains Using a GIS-Based and Osteological Landmark Approach
11: Human Cremation: Commingled and Questioned Identity
12: Marrying Anthropology and DNA: Essentials for Solving Complex Commingling Problems in Cases of Extreme Fragmentation
13: Prioritized Sampling of Bone and Teeth for DNA Analysis in Commingled Cases
14: A Multidisciplinary Approach to Commingled Remains Analysis: Anthropology, Genetics and Background Information
15: Blast and Crash Incidents: Resolving Commingling at the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System
16: Forensic Investigation of Suicidal Bombings in Israel: Balancing Religious Considerations with Medicological Responsibilities
17: Anthropologist-Directed Triage: Three Distinct Mass Fatality Events Involving Fragmentation and Commingling of Human Remains
18: Recovery and Identification of Victims of the Colgan Air Flight 3407 Crash
19: The Korea 208: A Large-Scale Commingling Case of American Remains from the Korean War
20: Data Management and Commingled Remains 
21: Resolving Commingling Issues During the Medicological Investigation of Mass Fatality Incidents
22: Mass Fatality Management and the Effects of Commingling
23: The Social Complexities of Commingled Remains
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Adams, Bradley
Dr. Adams' expertise is in the field of Forensic Anthropology. He is currently the Director of the Forensic Anthropology Unit for the Office of Chief Medical Examiner in New York City. Dr. Adams and his team are responsible for all forensic anthropology casework in the five boroughs of New York City (Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island). Dr. Adams and his team are also integral players in the ongoing recovery and identification work related to the September 11, 2001 attacks of the World Trade Center. Prior to accepting the position in New York, Dr. Adams was a Forensic Anthropologist and Laboratory Manager at the Central Identification Laboratory (CIL) in Hawaii from 1997-2004. The CIL is responsible for recovering missing U.S. military personnel from remote locations across the globe and its staff utilizes forensic anthropology as a key component in the identification efforts. While with the CIL, Dr. Adams directed large-scale recovery operations in such locations as Vietnam, Cambodia, North Korea, and Papua New Guinea. Dr. Adams has served as an expert witness in Forensic Anthropology in multiple court cases, he has worked as the project osteologist on several archaeological excavations, he has authored/edited several books, and he has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals on topics relating primarily to forensic anthropology. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Anthropology, a Fellow with the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, a founding board member of the Scientific Working Group for Forensic Anthropology, and a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Forensic Sciences.
Byrd, John
Dr. John E. Byrd earned his doctorate from the University of Tennessee in 1994. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Anthropology and serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Forensic Sciences. He has been Laboratory Director at the Central Identification Laboratory, Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command since 2009.
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