April162012

Estimation of postmortem interval

Establishing the time of death or postmortem interval (interval between time of death and when the body is found) is not always easy.

Exact time of death cannot be determined unless the death is actually witnessed, however different types of information can be used to help determine postmortem interval. The longer the postmortem interval, the harder it is to be exact, although the more factors that are taken into account, the more reliable the estimate is likely to be.

Factors involving the body include rigor mortis (stiffening of muscles after death), livor mortis (also known as postmortem hypostasis or lividity, the discolouration of the body after death due to blood settling under gravity), algor mortis (body cooling) and decomposition. The stomach contents can also be examined as well as the scene of death including environmental conditions such as temperature.

Reference: Dix, J., Graham, M. (2000) Time of Death, Decomposition and Identification: An Atlas. Florida: CRC Press.

April112012
Thumb print manicure

Thumb print manicure

11AM
March252012
March242012
deastrumquodvicis:

scipsy:

The “Body Farm” In Texas where anthropologists study human decomposition.

Not only do I like the photograph, I find this very interesting. (and it’s in my state somewhere.)

deastrumquodvicis:

scipsy:

The “Body Farm” In Texas where anthropologists study human decomposition.

Not only do I like the photograph, I find this very interesting. (and it’s in my state somewhere.)

March232012
March222012
Elizabeth Short, known as The Black Dahlia, born in 1924, was discovered murdered in 1947 in a vacant lot, torso cut in two and drained of its blood, a chunk of flesh taken from her leg and stuffed up her genitals, her hair freshly shampooed and still wet.
Read More

Elizabeth Short, known as The Black Dahlia, born in 1924, was discovered murdered in 1947 in a vacant lot, torso cut in two and drained of its blood, a chunk of flesh taken from her leg and stuffed up her genitals, her hair freshly shampooed and still wet.

Read More

March212012
March202012
March192012

Establishing identity in fire victims

Fires can cause extensive damage to bodies, often leaving them unrecognisable. Many things can be used to help identify victims of fires:

  • Tattoos
  • Scars
  • Breast implants (the silicone doesn’t burn easily and they are marked with individual serial numbers)
  • Prosthetics (again, have individual serial numbers)
  • Replacement joints and pacemakers (don’t burn and also have serial numbers)
  • Bone structure
  • Paperwork and possessions
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