Outdoor Crime Scene Reconstruction: Advanced Methods II

This 10hr course will focus on providing details regarding why and how cartographic (mapping) documentation of outdoor forensic scenes is of vital importance to understanding what happened in the past at these scenes. The first part of the course will detail how archaeology and geotaphonomy principles and practices are used to document the outdoor scene in general. The second part of the course provides details of how to produce detailed and informative maps of the scene using common mapping instrumentation, such as the electronic total station. The final part of the class describes how to locate burial features through remote sensing, including through the use of ground penetrating radar (GPR).

Your Instructor

Dr. Dennis Dirkmaat
Dr. Dennis Dirkmaat

Dr. Dirkmaat is the Chair of the undergraduate program in Applied Forensic Sciences and the Masters of Science in Anthropology (Forensic and Biological Anthropology Concentration) at Mercyhurst University, in Erie, PA. Dr. Dirkmaat has conducted over 400 forensic anthropology cases for nearly 40 coroners, medical examiners and the state police in Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and West Virginia. He has published articles on the role of archaeology and forensic anthropology in forensic investigations, fatal fire scenes and mass fatalities.

Dr. Dirkmaat has been a member of the Federal Government’s Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team (DMORT) since its inception. Dr. Dirkmaat serves as a consultant for international companies involved in the recovery and identification of victims of plane crashes from around the world as well as other mass disaster events. He has completed two major grant projects for the design of national scene processing protocols for mass disasters, terrorist attacks and fatal fires by the National Institute of Justice, US Department of Justice. As an instructor, Dr. Dirkmaat has nearly two decades of experience organizing training courses and lecturing for local, state and federal agencies in the US, Mexico, Chile, Canada and Spain. He has also presented over 70 lectures and papers discussing forensic investigation and anthropology at numerous regional, national and international meetings.

Disclaimer: The following courses were created for educational purposes only. They contain extensive discussions of principles and practices from the discipline of forensic anthropology with images of crime scenes and human remains for illustrative purposes. All of the cases have been anonymized (no specific location, nor specific individuals will be identified) and they have been adjudicated and/or permissions obtained from the proper authorities to use them for educational or research purposes.

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