75th SEMI-ANNUAL SEMINAR (Spring 1990)
CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF CRIMINALISTS
May 10-12, 1990
ALCOHOL ABSORPTION AND ELIMINATION- AN EMPIRICAL STUDY:
Richard Watkins, Phoenix Crime Lab, 620 W. Washington, Phoenix, AZ 85003
Alcohol absorption and elimination patterns are frequently key elements in the evaluation of DUl's and alcohol involved accidents. This study attempts to clarify those patterns under controlled conditions. Ten volunteers were dosed with bolus amounts of alcohol solution. The resultant BAC's were monitored by breath testing at approximately 8 minute intervals for approximately 4 hours. This pattern was repeated under three different eating conditions: Full stomach; empty stomach; and alcohol consumed during eating. The average time required to reach max BAC was found to be 40 minutes for full stomach, 44 minutes for empty stomach and 26 minutes for the drinking during eating condition. The theoretical max BAC was determined by projecting a straight line tangent to the alcohol reduction rate line backward to time 0. The empty stomach condition produced 101% of the expected value on 100% BAC. The full stomach and during eating conditions produced 92% of the expected values. The actual max BAC reached was 80% of the theoretical for the empty stomach, 70% for full stomach and 73% for drinking during eating. The net rate of BAC reduction (burn off) was determined to be 0.02% BAC/hr. for empty stomach, 0.018% BAC/hr. full stomach and 0.016% BAC/hr. for drinking during eating. The results indicate that the time required to reach max BAC is shorter and more predictable than previously thought. The theoretical max is highly predictable and the actual maximum BAC may be estimated to a reasonable degree.
ALCOHOL ELIMINATION RATE; A FIELD STUDY:
Sarah Yoshida, B.S., and Kathleen Ciula, M.S., California Department of Justice, Manteca Regional Laboratory, 2213 Blue Gum Avenue, Modesto, California 95351
Intoxilyzer results from over 1200 subjects were used to determine an average elimination rate. Significant differences due to gender and age were found to exist. The overall average elimination rate was 0.0178%/hr, with males averaging 0.0175%/hr and females averaging 0.0203%/hr. The rate also appeared to decrease with age, with a significant decrease noted after the age of 40.
Raymond J. Davis, Quantum Laboratories
It has been my experience over the last ten years that medical professionals and university professors are called upon to provide expert testimony in the pharmacology and toxicology of alcohol. These individuals usually have no formal training or practical experience in this field but by virtue of their degrees are permitted to testify. A recent case has shown the two common errors most often made by these 'experts'. First, how many ounces of pure alcohol would have to be in the body at the time of the test, given a specific weight (A), second, what would be the impact of a alcoholic beverage on a persons blood alcohol level given a specific body weight and concentration of the beverage (Co). The correct application of the classic Widmark formula is essential to providing competent scientific testimony.
A DEATH INVESTIGATION
Raymond J. Davis, Quantum Laboratories
A 26 year old woman was found by her husband, on the floor of their guest bedroom with a penetrating gunshot wound to her chest. The house was neat and orderly with signs of active housekeeping in progress. There was no sign of forced entry nor was there anything reported missing. The house was unlocked. A fully packed and opened suitcase was found on top of the guest bed with a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver lying on top of the clothes. This paper will cover a number of aspects of forensic science: Crime scene investigation and reconstruction, testing and interpretation, pathology of the gunshot wound, autopsy findings and the characteristics of the handgun. Based upon the facts presented, individuals attending this presentation will be asked to determine the manner of death of this woman, through confidential ballot.
DISCRIMINATION OF FIBERS, LACQUERS AND DOCUMENTS BY MICROSCOPIC SPECTROPHOTOMETRY
Peter Baurschmidt, Ph.D., Carl Zeiss Inc., One Zeiss Dr., Thornwood, NY 10594
Microscope spectral measuring techniques have become increasingly important in forensic sciences as a modern analytical tool. The Universal Microscope Spectro Photometer system UMSP-KT is specifically designed for routine work in fiber discrimination, paint chip and document identification, and counterfeit analysis. The UMSP system provides all measuring methods, such as transmittance fluorescence, and specular and diffuse reflectance. The spectral range is from UV to NIR (240-2100nm) which greatly enhances the significance of the results in work comparing minute spectral and color differences in samples (metametric effects). Fluorescence spectral analysis helps to identify optical brighteners in fibers and the type of ink used in documents. Dedicated software modules help to quantify and compare spectral data and to establish a data base.
LIGHT AND ELECTRON MICROSCOPY OF PAINT PYROLYSIS RESIDUE
Richard S. Brown, and Thomas J. Hopen, The McCrone Group, 1412 Oakbrook Drive, Norcross, GA, 30093; James L. Small, and John H. Kilbourn, Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences
Polarized light microscopy (PLM) and scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive spectroscopy (SEM-EDS) are used as complimentary techniques to characterize the inorganic fraction of some white latex paints.
Analysis of standard paint by PLM and SEM-EDS is compared to pyrolyzed paint samples and ashed paint samples. Sample preparation, examination, and problems are discussed.
THE CAC SEMINAR PRESENTATION ABSTRACTS DATABASE
Peter D. Barnett, Stephen Cooper, Pam Smith, and the CAC Training and Resource Committee
Abstracts for presentation at CAC Semi-annual seminars for the past 10 years are now available on computer disks. Each abstract has been key-worded and indexed for retrieval using the FYI3000 test retrieval program. In addition, the index for all seminar abstracts is available on disk for searching and retrieval using FYI3000. The abstracts, index, and retrieval program are available from the CAC as a package. The retrieval program can also be used for text based information retrieval with databases that are developed by individual users. The use of FYI3000 will be demonstrated, and some applications beyond the CAC abstracts discussed.
THE INHERENT ERROR IN SIZE DETERMINATION OF RFLP’S USING MOLECULAR WEIGHT MARKERS
Dale Dykes, Shirley Miller, Moses Schenfield, PhD, Analytical Genetic Testing Center, Inc., 7808 Cherry Creek South Drive, Suite 201, Denver, Colorado 80231;
John Danilovs, PhD, Immunological Associates, 15425-E S.W. Koll Parkway, Beaverton, Oregon 97006
The basic premise inherent in using molecular weight (MW) standards to determine the size of RFLP bands is that a band of 1 Kb will migrate the same distance as a 1 Kb standard on the same gel regardless of the experimental conditions. Given this premise it should be possible to compare data bases between laboratories. However, a comparison of RFLP's hybridized with probe pl44-D6 from two laboratories clearly demonstrated a shift in position for the same samples when compared to MW standards. Comparison of laboratory protocols indicated that gel concentration might be a major factor affecting the observed band differences. Although the initial comparisons were done using identical amounts of genomic, it was proposed that the amount of genomic might also have sa significant affect upon RFLP band sizing. Parallel experiments were performed to determine the influence of gel concentration and sample amount (µg) upon the observed RFLP size. The results indicate that both experimental parameters dramatically influence the observed band sizes. This implies that pooling data bases is not justified if gel conditions and sample amounts are not identical. Furthermore, we found that genomic samples cannot be adequately compared to a MW standard unless the standard is STABILIZED with restricted genomic DNA at a concentration similar to the genomic samples in question. This new application for sizing DNA RFLP's permits accurate and consistent measurements when comparing fragments at various gel and sample amounts.
CACLD DNA BLIND TRIAL- SECOND SET
Mary H. Graves, Orange County Sheriff-Coroner, Forensic Science Services, Santa Ana, California 92701
In July 1988, CACLD sent out its second DNA Blind Trial Set to each of the three commercial laboratories: LIFECODES, Forensic Science Associates, and CELLMARK. The set of 50 samples consisted of 3 liquid bloods, 34 bloodstains and 13 semen stains, originating from 20 donors and collected by Los Angeles Sheriffs Dept., Los Angeles Police Dept., and Orange County Sheriffs Dept. Various substrates were involved. Some specimens were subjected to limited environmental stress to simulate casework material. Results reported by the three participating laboratories will be discussed.
SEAL BOMBS: TO EVERYTHING THERE IS A PORPOISE
Martin Fink, San Diego County Sheriffs Crime Laboratory, 3520 Kurtz Street, San Diego, California 92110; Albert C. Myrick, Jr. and Cheryl Glick, Southwest Fisheries Center, National Marine Fisheries Services, PO Box 271, La Jolla, California 92038
1988 amendments to the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 restrict the use of seal bombs in commercial yellowfin tuna fishing to Class-C pest control devices and set an April 1, 1990 deadline to prohibit or restrict their use unless determinations were made to show that "such devices do not result in physical impairment or increased mortality of marine mammals". To check compliance with the U.S. Department of Transportation's definition of an explosive pest control device, seven types of seal bombs—two from the United States, three from Mexico, one from Panama, and one from Costa Rica—were analyzed to determine the powder charge weight, chemical composition of the powder, percentage of each powder component, and percent TNT equivalence of the powder charge.
THE EXAMINATION OF HANGING CHADS ON ELECTION BALLOTS
Peter D. Barnett, Forensic Science Associates, 3053 Research Drive, Richmond, CA 94806
Most jurisdictions in California use the punch card ballot in elections. With this ballot, the voter must remove a small tab of paper, the "chad", to indicate his vote on each ballot item. In some instances, this chad is not completely removed and may actually be replaced in approximately its original position when the ballot is removed from the voting machine. In other instances, absentee voters, who do not use a voting machine, may incorrectly punch their ballots. In close elections, each ballot is inspected by election officials and people who contest the election and those ballots in which the chad is not completely removed become the subject of dispute. Microscopic examination of the paper fibers can sometimes, but not always, resolve the dispute. In a recent election with over 5500 votes cast, the determination of whether or not that chad had been punched out by the voter on 3 ballots meant the difference between passage and defeat of a school bond measure. The examination of the disputed ballots, and experiments conducted to determine what might happen under various conditions of marking the ballot will be described.
INTERPRETATION OF SPATTER OF MULTIPLE DROPS OF BLOOD
Jeff Ribordy-Corral, M.P.H., and John I. Thornton, D.Crim., Forensic Science Group, School of Public Health, Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA 94720
There have been numerous studies dealing with the interpretation of bloodstains at crime scenes, and the behavior of single drops of blood is fairly well understood. In actual case situations, however, it occasionally happens that one or more drops of blood drip directly onto the first drop deposited. In this study, the patterns exhibited by multiple drops of blood were observed. Human blood was dropped onto a non-porous surface at heights up to 24 inches, with the number of drops varying from 2 to 8. The number of blood drops and the number of smaller, satellite droplts appear to show a log relationship that is statistically significant.
FORENSIC ANALYSIS FOR ANABOLIC STEROIDS AND HUMAN CHORIONIC GONADOTROPIN- A REVIEW OF CASE STUDIES
Paul Colman, Ph.D., Erin A'Hearn, B.A, Robert Taylor, B.S., and Sam Le, M.S.; The Los Angeles County Sheriffs Scientific Services Bureau, Los Angeles, CA 90057
Four selected case studies are presented as examples of the following: (1) the mismarked steroid tablet; (2) the unmarked steroid tablet; (3) extraction and hydrolysis of an akly-steroid dissolved in oil; and (4) HCG detection by immunoassay. Case I - SEARLE #1401 counterfeit tablets, CHC13 extract analyzed by FT-IR and GC/MSD confirmed the presence of 17-alpha-methyltestosterone, and not Oxandrolone. Case II - A look-a-like "minibennie" tablet, CHC13 extract analyzed by GC/MSD confirmed the presence of both 17-alpha-methyltestosterone and methandrostenolone. Case III -Boldenone Undecylenate dissolved in vegetable oil, MeOH extract subjected to alkaline hydrolysis yields Boldenone as confirmed by GC/MSD analysis. The alkaline hydrolysis of the 17-alkyl-steroid linkage affords improved gas chromatography with reduced analysis time. Case IV - HCG, testing with rabbit antiserum to HCG by Ouchterlony double diffusion immunoassay detects 5 IU of HCG from a hypodermic solution.
AUTOMATED GC-FTIR ANALYSIS OF MIXTURES OF FORENSIC INTEREST
Forrest Weesner, Ken Kempert, Nicolet Instrument Corporation, 5225 Verona Road
Madison, WI 53711
Infrared chromatographic detectors provide an alternative to mass spectrometry for verifying the identity of compounds responsible for chromatographic peaks. In many cases, infrared detection is preferred for identification of closely related isomers or compounds which produce molecular ions in low abundance in electron impact sources. The ability to provide unambiguous structural verification of most controlled substances is well within the capabilities of GC-IR, yet the technique seems to be underutilized in the forensic laboratories. Low samples throughput is often an objection. Automated GC-IR operation is not widely practiced but can be used to achieve acceptable sample throughput. This presentation will discuss instrumentation, software and data types pertaining to lightpipe GC-IR, with an emphasis on automated operations. Applications to mixtures of amphetamines and metabolites will be shown.
CLEAN-UP PROCEDURE FOR MICROCRYSTALLINE TESTS ON HEROIN SAMPLES USING PREP-TLC
Lansing J. Lee, Oakland Police Department Criminalistics Laboratory, 455 Seventh Street, Room 608, Oakland, CA 94607
Often microcrystal tests on heroin samples are not possible due to interfering compounds. A clean-up procedure using prep-TLC on an ether extract from bicarbonate solution, followed by running the microcrystal tests directly on the silica gel scraped spot was investigated. Best results were obtained when approximately 1mg of heroin was spotted (NOT streaked) on the silica gel plate, and the heroin spot (UV visualization) was carefully scraped to avoid non-heroin containing silica gel. From the single heroin spot it is possible to simultaneously run Mercuric Iodide, Mercuric Chloride, Platinum Chloride and Gold Bromide microcrystal tests and obtain characteristic crystal forms.
"CONSISTENT WITH" (STARRS5 BUGBEAR): THE ESCHAR OF INDIVIDUALIZATION TERMINOLOGY. ELUCIDATION AND RECTIFICATION OF FUZZY TERMINOLOGY USED TO INFER THE POSSIBILITY OF AN INDIVIDUALIZATION
Robert Ogle, Jr., Forensic Science Consultant, 801 Jefferson St., Suite 1A, P.O. Box 3087, Fairfield, CA 94533
The terminology resorted to by criminalists and other "Forensic Scientists" when attempting to adumbrate an opinion of individualization is probed by the author. The Fundamental Unit (FU) of Individualization is elucidated and the cant exploited by the examiner to avoid presenting an opinion possessing accuracy, brevity or clarity is exposed. The process of individualization is linked to the foundational requisites of taxonomy and identification which form the scientific principles upon which any attempt at individualization must rest. Some tongue-in-cheek alternate phrases for "consistent with" are also presented for the criminalists' consideration for use.
WASHED SEMEN STAINS
Robert S. Blackett, M.F.S., Arizona Department of Public Safety Crime Laboratory, PO Box 15500, Flagstaff, AZ 86011
It is not unusual for the author to encounter stains, particularly in panty crotches, which do not give any chemical tests, but nonetheless yield spermatozoa on extraction. One possible explanation for this is that the item has been washed. Thirteen separate semen stains were prepared on different new cloth samples. The stains were halved, the half of each stain was washed in a standard washing machine and dried in a dryer. Both halves were then subjected to standard serological testing: acid phosphatase, p30, ABO, and PGM, as well as sperm extraction (1 minute vortex, 10 minutes ultrasound, Christmas Tree stained). Spermatozoa were extracted and identified from all washed stains, although at much lower frequency than from the corresponding unwashed half. In general, chemical tests on the washed halves failed, although small spots of acid phosphatase activity were occasionally seen, and 4/13 gave detectable ABO activity. Additional results and methodology will be presented. If possible, DNA testing will also be done.
DETECTION OF SEQUENCE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN GC VARIANTS USING THE POLYMERASE CHAIN REACTION
Rebecca Reynolds and George Sensabaugh, 140 Warren Hall, Forensic Science Group, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720; Daniel Gregonis, PO Box 569, San Bernardino, County Sheriffs Department, San Bernardino, CA 92402
We have developed a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) system for typing Gc variants. Two Gc cDNA sequences (type 1 and type 2) have been published and compared. There are 4 regions of apparent polymorphism that result in amino acid differences at codons 152, 311, 416, and 420. We used the PCR to amplify and analyze these regions. The sequence differences in codons 416 and 420 result in differences in restriction enzyme (RE) sites between type 1 and type 2 DNA. Since the differences between the IF and IS subtypes were not known, we isolated DNA from individuals representing the 6 possible Gc phenotypes, amplified this region using the PCR and performed RE and DNA sequencing analysis on each sample. The 6 genotypes give 6 distinct RE digestion patterns, allowing unambiguous typing of Gc by this method. In addition, this sequence information allowed us to identify the amino acid differences between the Gc subtypes in this region. We are continuing our analysis of this region and the other polymorphic regions to better characterize these DNA sequence variants.
THE POLYMERASE CHAIN REACTION (PCR) IS A METHOD FOR THE ENZYMATIC AMPLIFICATION OF SPECIFIC REGIONS OF DNA
S. Walsh, et al., Department of Human Genetics, Cetus Corporation, Emeryville, CA 94608
The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a method for the enzymatic amplification of specific regions of DNA. PCR makes possible the analysis of genetic variation from samples containing minute quantities of DNA, or from samples containing substantially degraded DNA This report describes the PCR based analysis of sequence polymorphism at the HLA locus DQα, as well as other PCR genetic markers. The HLA-DQα system, which is now available as a kit, detects six alleles and has a discriminating power of 0.93. Population frequency data as well as forensic casework data will be presented.
DNA PROBE D4S139/PH30; THE OCCURRENCE AND INTERPRETATION OF THREE BAND PATTERNS
Howard C. Coleman, GeneLex Corp, 1000 Seneca St.,Seattle, WA 98101; John S. Waye, PhD and Ron M. Fourney, PhD, Central Forensic Laboratory, RCMP, Ottawa, Ontario K1G 3M8, Canada
The evaluation of single, highly polymorphic DNA loci has become a standard forensic test. One commonly used VNTR locus, D4S139, contains internal restriction site polymorphisms in some individuals. This has been demonstrated by the analysis of single and double digest restriction maps. The frequency of occurrence of the site polymorphism for Hae III ranges from approximately 1% in the Caucasian population to as high as 10% in a Native American population. When calculating the expected frequency of occurrence of a DNA profile that contains a site polymorphism and hence a third band, the frequency of the site polymorphism can be used with the frequency of the most common band detected in the DNA profile.
A PROCEDURE FOR IMPROVING THE RHODIZONATE-GSR TEST ON BLOOD STAINED GARMETS
Lucien C. Haag, Forensic Science Services, Phoenix, AZ 85019
Representative types of clothing with bullet holes surrounded by lead-containing GSR deposits were partially stained with human blood so as to mask a portion of the GSR deposits. These blood stains were "fixed" by a 3 to 4 month exposure to air and ambient temperatures that often reached 90 to 100°F. Subsequent slow desorption of the blood in trays of normal saline solution at approximately 65°F was found to remove the majority of the blood without measurable dissolving or diffusing the lead-containing residues. A much improved pattern of lead deposits could then be lifted and developed with the tartrate buffer/filter paper technique.
THE APPLICATION OF ANALYTICAL IMAGING TO THE RETRIEVAL OF UNSOLVED HOMICIDE MISSLES
Eugene J. Wolberg, B.S., San Diego Police Crime Lab, M.S.-725, 1401 Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101
The ability of the crime lab to examine on a routine basis, missles from unsolved homicides is dictated by workload, recognition of a series, and retrieval abilities. As the size of the files grow, a time efficient method must be devised. The use of current image processing technology will be discussed as to the ability to reduce bullet striations to line/area maps. These digital maps will be stored on disk and integrated with class information. With class and striae information on disk, computer searches can be made on routine submissions to the lab. An expansion of this process would be the data base linking to other crime laboratories which share gang activity. While this work is in the initial stages, it shows much promise.
THE IN-SITU PERFORMANCE OF THE 147 GRAIN 9MM SUBSONIC BULLET AND ITS CORRELATION TO 10% BALLISTIC GELATIN
Eugene J. Wolberg, B.S., San Diego Police Crime Lab, M.S.-725,1401, Broadway, San Diego, CA 92101
Eighteen shootings are reviewed as to the terminal performance of the 147 grain subsonic bullet in living tissue. The terminal ballistic performance is the compared to the ballistic performance data in 10% ballistic gel at 4°C. A close correlation was found, verifying Dr. Fackler's ballistic gel can be used a reliable predictor of ballistic performance in living tissue, in terms of expansion characteristics and expected penetration depth of test missiles. This ballistic model can be used in investigations of beyond GSR range, muzzle to target distance determinations. The Methodology is dependent on trajectory software and reduced velocity test loadings that simulate down range velocities and calculated energies at the target range.