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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI Forensic Science spring seminar series begins Jan. 28 with nationally known Herbert MacDonell

Media Contact: Dave Lavallee, 401-874-5862

KINGSTON, R.I. – January 26, 2005 – Locks, safes and the polygraph, underwater forensics, O.J. Simpson and entomology are among the topics that will be tackled during the University of Rhode Island’s Forensic Science seminar series this spring semester.

On Fridays from January 28 to May 6, the seminars will be held in Pastore Hall, Room 124, on the Kingston Campus from 3:30 to 5 p.m. There is no seminar on March 18 because of spring break. The program, which is free and open to the public, is offered by the URI Forensic Science Partnership.

The schedule of speakers and their topics is as follows:

• Jan. 28: Dr. Herbert MacDonell, director of the Laboratory for Forensic Science in Corning, N.Y.-- “Using People to Solve Crimes.” In 1960, MacDonell invented the MAGNA Brush fingerprint device that changed the way fingerprint evidence is processed worldwide. Author of 100 articles in professional publications, he has appeared on such programs as Good Morning America, 20/20, and Dateline NBC. He is the subject of the book, The Evidence Never Lies, and the author of Bloodstain Patterns. He has consulted on criminal cases in all 50 states and in such countries as Australia, Italy, and the Philippines. He testified in the O.J. Simpson trial and in the assassination cases of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

• Feb. 4: Dr. Albert B. Harper, director of the Henry C. Lee Institute of Forensic Science at the University of New Haven, “Recovery & Identification of Human Remains.”

• Feb. 11: Nancy Haley, supervisor of the Forensic Toxicology Laboratory at the Rhode Island Department of Health, “Forensic Toxicity.”

• Feb. 18: Mark Zabinski, R.I. State Crime Laboratory criminalist, “Using Fingerprints for Identification.”

• Feb. 25: Mark Tobias, former chief of the Organized Crime Unit for South Dakota’s Office of the Attorney General, “Locks, Safes, Polygraph.”

• Mar. 4: John Chatterton, commercial diver, scuba instructor, dive boat captain and member of the Explorers Club, “Underwater Forensics.”

• Mar. 11: Eugene A. Rugala, supervisory special agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, “Violent Crimes – Silence of the Lambs Fact or Fiction.”

• Mar. 25: Dr. Richard Saferstein, forensic science consultant, “Lindbergh to O.J. Simpson – the Expert Witness in Court.”

• Apr. 1: Don Housman, supervisor of the Forensic Consultant Unit, Death Investigations, with the Naval Criminal Investigate Service, “The Use of Bloodstains to Reconstruct Crime Scenes.”

• Apr. 8: Dr. Anthony Carpi, assistant professor of environmental toxicology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, “Forensic Research for Environmental Protection.”

• Apr. 15: Dennis Pincince of the Rhode Island State Police, “Forensic Video Analysis.”

• Apr. 22: Dr. Jason Byrd, forensic entomologist and chairman of the American Board of Forensic Entomology, “Entomology.”

• Apr. 29: Doug Ubelaker, curator of physical anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History, “Case Studies in Forensic Anthropology.”

• May 6: Dr. Maurice Marshall, a retired expert from the Forensic Explosive Lab in the United Kingdom, “Explosives Scenes – Forensics.”