Forensic Science in Court

Challenges in the Twenty First Century

By (author) Hon. Donald Shelton

Publication date:

16 October 2010

Length of book:

196 pages


Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

ISBN-13: 9781442201873

Forensic Science in Court explores the legal implications of forensic science—an increasingly important and complex part of the justice system. Judge Donald Shelton provides an accessible overview of the legal aissues, from the history of evidence in court, to "gatekeeper" judges determining what evidence can be allowed, to the "CSI effect" in juries.

The book describes and evaluates various kinds of evidence, including DNA, fingerprints, handwriting, hair, bite marks, tool marks, firearms and bullets, fire and arson investigation, and bloodstain evidence. Assessing the strengths and limitations of each kind of evidence, the author also discusses how they can contribute to identifying the "who," "how," and "whether" questions that arise in criminal prosecutions.

Author Donald Shelton draws on the depth of his experiences as courtroom prosecutor, professor, and judge, to provide a well-rounded look at these increasingly critical issues. Case studies throughout help bring the issues to life and show how forensic science has been used, both successfully and not, in real-world situations.
You couldn't find a better source for grasping the issues confronting the field of forensic science today than Forensic Science in Court. As a trial judge, Donald Shelton has observed the legal process from its most critical perspective, so who better than a 'gatekeeper' to guide us? Judge Shelton provides a detailed framework for best practices in all areas of forensic science, for today and in the future. Everyone with a hand in the justice system, from judges to attorneys to expert witnesses, should read this book.