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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI Forensic Science Partnership Seminar Series to host expert on wood as evidence March 21

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862

URI Forensic Science Partnership Seminar Series to host expert on wood as evidence March 21 KINGSTON, R.I. -- March 18, 2001 -- An expert on wood as forensic evidence will be the speaker at the University of Rhode Island Forensic Seminar Series on Thursday, March 21 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. The lecture by R. Bruce Hoadley, professor emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, is free and open to the public. It will be held on the Kingston Campus, Pastore Hall, Room 124. Hoadley said Wood is a universal material, present everywhere in forms ranging from living trees and shrubs to building material and paper. Not surprisingly, wood is commonly present at crime scenes. Too often it is overlooked as evidence. Hoadley’s presentation summarizes the potential of developing wood evidence on the basis of species identification, material and product form, characterization of special features such as types of machining and individualization of tool marks, and associated wood preservatives, finishes and adhesives. Case studies from crimes in Connecticut and Rhode Island will be presented to illustrate examples of the forensic application of wood science and technology. Hoadley is professor emeritus in wood science and technology at UMass. He has a doctorate in forestry of wood technology from Yale University. His 38-year career at UMass focused on anatomy and physical properties of wood. He has published more than 50 articles and is the author of two books, Understanding Wood and Identifying Wood. He has served as an expert witness on homicide investigations for Henry Lee at the Connecticut State Police Forensic Lab and for other forensic agencies in New England. Every January Hoadley offers an intensive 4-day short course in wood identification through the Continuing Education department at UMass.