Forensic Dental Evidence

2nd Edition

An Investigator's Handbook

Editors: C. Michael Bowers
Print ISBN: 9780123820006
eBook ISBN: 9780123851635
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 27th August 2010
Page Count: 368
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Forensic Dental Evidence, Second Edition provides the base for investigating, identifying and processing forensic dental evidence. This edition leads off with an explanation of dental nomenclature and quickly advances to the newest developments in trace dental evidence, methods for trace DNA evidence, and mass disaster cases (9/11, Bali, Thailand). Bowers covers how digital imaging of evidence has assisted in cases where incarcerated individuals have been exonerated. This volume provides the necessary tools and practical suggestions for forensic scientists and investigators charged with analysis of a crime scene. With an emphasis on the proper use of scientific methods, knowledge of analytical limitations and the necessity for team training, planning and multi-level management, Forensic Dental Evidence, Second Edition provides invaluable practical information. Contemporary cases and interesting historic cases, including an Egyptian mummy and Adolf Hitler, demonstrate relevant case methods.

This is a must-have resource for forensic scientists and law enforcement involved in processing crime scenes and conducting criminal investigations. This book will serve as an excellent reference for medical examiners, forensic pathologists, defense and prosecuting attorneys and crime scene investigators who need the latest in forensic information.

Table of Contents

Contributors Photo Credits Foreword Preface to Second Edition Preface to First Edition Acknowledgments Introduction

  1. Historical Dental Investigations Overview The Forensic Examination of Herakleides The Aging of Herakleides The Odontological Identification of Adolf Hitler, Using Cinematographic Documents Introduction A Short Biography of Adolf Hitler Hitler's Death Remains and X-Rays High and Moderate Degrees of Concordance Conclusions Dental Forensic Identifications: The Beginnings to the Nineteenth Century Hesi-Ré: The First Dentist Lollia Paulina: The First Record of Forensic Dental Identification Dr. Joseph Warren: The First Forensic Dental Identification in the United States Edinburgh 1814: The First Use of Dental Evidence in a Court Case Tooth Eruption Patterns as an Age Determinant Parkman/Webster Murder Trial, Boston 1850: The First Court Case Largely Built on Dental Evidence John Wilkes Booth: Identification of the Infamous Assassin The “Bazar de la Charité” Disaster Results in the World’s First Forensic Odontology Text
  2. Dental Detectives Who Is a Qualified Forensic Dentist? Advice: Use the Best What Dentists Do What to Do When “a Skull with Some Teeth” Has Been Discovered The Use of Teeth by Forensic Science Factors that Change the Appearance of Teeth Over a Lifetime The Language of Dental Identification Tooth Names and Quantity of Teeth in Adults and Children Human Tooth Morphology The Dental Investigator's Role in Forensic Case Work Collecting and Preserving Useful Evidence Scientific Dental Investigations The Most Famous Bitemark Case of the 20th Century Woman’s Identity Confirmed by a Missing Tooth
  3. The Next Level in Victim Identification: Materials Properties as an Aid in Victim Identification Introductio


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About the Editor

C. Michael Bowers

C. Michael Bowers is an Associate Clinical Professor at the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA. He is also the Deputy Medical Examiner in Ventura, California. Dr. Bowers is a practicing forensic dentist and consultant who has testified and worked on hundreds of cases where dental evidence has been involved. He is a former Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Odontology, a Senior Crime Scene Analyst for the International Association for Identification (IAI) and has written other articles, chapters and books on forensic dentistry. He owns and operates his own dental practice in Ventura, CA.

Affiliations and Expertise

Associate Clinical Professor, Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA; Deputy Medical Examiner, Ventura, CA, USA


"This book, really more impressively a treatise, leaves no (dental) stone unturned in explicating the history, the savoir faire, the investigative potential, the litigation and the research firmly establishing the foundations of dental identifications in the firmament of the forensic sciences." - James E Starrs, Professor Emeritus of Law & Forensic Sciences, The George Washington University 

"Forensic Dental Evidence: An Investigator's Handbook is a must-read for all participants in the criminal justice system--judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, investigators and police, to name a few--as well as all forensic odontologists. C. Michael Bowers, one of the world's most renowned forensic dental experts, draws upon a wealth of his expertise and that of others to put forth in a highly accessible book information and guidance that will surely prevent misidentifications and wrongful convictions." - Maurice Possley, Northern California Innocence Project at Santa Clara University Law School, Santa Clara, CA; Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist

"...this book comprehensively covers concepts and protocols necessary for criminal investigation involving dental evidence and will be of educational value and interest to many categories of reader. It is practical, up to date, informative, well-illustrated and appropriately cautionary."-- Judith A Hinchliffe, Independent Forensic Odontologist, New Zealand in Journal of Forensic Odonto-Stomatology (2011)