I am very pleased to have been contributor to a new textbook, Forensic Document Examination in the 21st Century. The text was edited by Jan Seaman Kelly and Miriam Angel and will be published by CRC Press.
My personal contribution is chapter 3 entitled “The Logical Approach to Evidence Evaluation”. The complete list of contributors is impressive and includes Jan Seaman Kelly, Miriam Angel, Brett M.D. Bishop, Rigo Vargas, Mara L. Merlino, Samiah Ibrahim, Lucinda Risi, Lisa M. Hanson, Carolyne Bird, Linda L. Mitchell, Elaine X. Wooton, Donna O. Eisenberg, Thomas W. Vastrick, Marie E. Durina, Kathleen Annunziata Nicolaides, Khody R. Detwiler, Tobin Tanaka, Larry A. Olson, Zain M. Bhaloo, Peter Tytell, Timothy A. Campbell, and Mark T. Goff. Read more
I was pleased be a co-contributor for Dr. Linton A. Mohammed’s latest textbook, Forensic Examination of Signatures. Other contributors, along with Dr. Mohammed, were Lloyd Cunningham, William Flynn, and Kathleen Nicolaides, with the Foreword by the esteemed Professor David Kaye. The text was published June 6, 2019 by Elsevier’s Academic Press (ISBN: 978-0-12-813029-2, https://doi.org/10.1016/C2016-0-04445-5).
The book focuses on the forensic examination and evaluation of signatures which is one of the most difficult areas of Forensic Document Examination. My contribution was Chapter 11 entitled “Conclusions, Reporting and Testimony”, co-written with Dr. Mohammed. Read more
The 78th Annual General Meeting of the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners (ASQDE, Inc) was held August 10th through 14th, 2020. It was a new type of meeting necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The meeting was originally planned to be held in Frankenmuth, Michigan but a (very wise) decision was made to hold an entirely virtual meeting instead. The theme for this year was “Future-Proofing Questioned Documents”. Read more
One of the projects I had the pleasure to be involved in was the “Expert Working Group for Human Factors in Handwriting Examination”. The WG was convened in 2015 to conduct a scientific assessment of the effects of Human Factors in Forensic Handwriting Examination, with the support of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) Office of Investigative and Forensic Sciences (OIFS) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Programs Office.
It was a lengthy process involving a lot of people drawn from many different domains. The authors of the report included Melissa K. Taylor, Carolyne Bird, Brett Bishop, Ted Burkes, Michael P. Caligiuri, Bryan Found, Wesley P. Grose, Lauren R. Logan, Kenneth E. Melson, Mara L. Merlino, Larry S. Miller, Linton Mohammed, Jonathan Morris, John Paul Osborn, Nikola Osborne, Brent Ostrum, Christopher P. Saunders, Scott A. Shappell, H. David Sheets, Sargur N. Srihari, Reinoud D. Stoel, Thomas W. Vastrick, Heather E. Waltke, and Emily J. Will. Read more
I recently published an editorial in the Journal of the Canadian Society of Forensic Science. Two versions were published almost simultaneously (the original written in English and a translation in French) entitled, respectively, “CSFS Document Section Position on the Logical Approach to Evidence Evaluation and Corresponding Wording of Conclusions” and “La position de la Section des documents de la SCSJ sur l’approche logique de l’évaluation de la preuve et le libellé des conclusions”.
I wrote these in my capacity as the sitting chairman of the Documents section of the CSFS, on behalf of the members of that section. The impetus for writing them was to introduce the “logical approach” and related topics to the Canadian forensic community in a ‘formal’ way (hopefully resulting in ongoing discussion) and to provide the public and the courts with the perspective of forensic practitioners who have reviewed the literature and studied this issue in depth. To that end, the document references many initiatives relating to the topic. I will note that it’s not a perfect document but it covers the main points reasonably well.
Please note that this position paper was first written a few years ago. There was considerable delay in publication relating to the production of an acceptable French-language translation of the document. I must thank Julie Binette who was invaluable in that process. The delay, however, means the references provided in the paper are not fully up-to-date with the very latest developments in this area.
Nonetheless, that shortcoming doesn’t detract from the position expressed. Today there is even more support and justification than is outlined in the paper.