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The Forensic Anthropology Report: A Proposed Format Based on the National Association of Medical Examiners Performance StandardsP

Ann Webster Bunch, Robert Stoppacher

Abstract


Following the release of the 2009 National Academy of Sciences Report, forensic practitioners have been reviewing or developing their best practices, especially with regard to methods used in evidence testing.  Standardization of reports and terminology, although recommended in the NAS Report, has been less of a focus to date.  Subsequently, the National Commission on Forensic Science has posted an initial draft under the heading “Report Content” that summarizes the basic information required in a forensic specialty service provider report (www.justice.gov/ncfs/work-products#report).  As indicated, the draft document addresses content, not format.  Herein, the authors propose a format for forensic anthropology reports submitted to medical examiners/coroners, that is based on the performance standards established by the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME) in 2005.  Adopting such a format would provide greater uniformity and clarity across the many forensic disciplines involved in medicolegal death investigation.


Keywords


forensic science; forensic anthropology; pathology; medicolegal death investigation

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References


National Academy of Sciences (2009). “Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward”. Washington, D.C.

National Commission on Forensic Science (NCFS) website (2015) www.justice.gov/ncfs/work-products#report

Bunch, A. (2014) “National Academy of Sciences Standardization: On What Terms?” Journal of Forensic Sciences 59 (4): 1041-1045.

National Association of Medical Examiners (2006). Forensic Autopsy Performance Standards. San Antonio, TX.

Christensen, Passalaqua, and Bartelink (2014). Forensic Anthropology: Current Methods and Practice. Academic Press: New York, NY.

Byers, S. (2005) Introduction to Forensic Anthropology: A Textbook. 2nd Edition. Pearson: Boston, MA.

Burns, K. R. (1999) Forensic Anthropology Training Manual. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall Publishers.

Special Working Group for Anthropology (SWGANTH) website (2012) www.swganth.org

U.S. Legal’s Terms. 11th edition. LEI publications: Boston, MA.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18103/mra.v2i5.367

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