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The Truth About Forensic Science

9 November 2010

Dr Mark Elliott, Senior Lecturer in the School of Chemistry, and Dr Romina Carabott of the University of Glamorgan and Expert Forensics recently gave public lectures about forensic science at events organised by the Glamorgan Women’s Institutes.  This forensic science event generated the biggest response to any activity offered by the Public Affairs committee in Glamorgan with more than 440 people across the county attending, so that the lectures were given on three separate occasions.

Dr Elliott explained the properties of DNA and the history of DNA profiling, illustrating his lecture with examples from recent and historical crimes, and a video demonstration of the extraction of DNA from baked beans!

Dr Romina Carabott of Expert Forensics described her work in forensic dentistry, giving examples of age analysis, bite mark analysis, and victim identification. Romina explained how in major incidents such as the Boxing Day Tsunami, a multi-disciplinary team worked to identify the hundreds of victims, and how the lessons from that has been used to set up preparations for other crises in the UK and elsewhere.

Both lectures were well-received, and afterwards Pam Dinham, Chair of the Glamorgan Women’s Institute said “We were grateful for the work that both had put in to preparing their presentations and their light touch and clarity made the technical content and some uncomfortable content instructive, accessible and enjoyable.”