Chapter 14 Human Remains

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Chapter 14 Human Remains. 206 bones. Forensic Anthropology. Identifies skeletal Remains where bones are the only evidence. Responsibilities. Assist in investigation of crimes. Examine and analyze human remains. Skills used to…. Recover individuals from crime scene. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Transcript of Chapter 14 Human Remains

Slide 1

Chapter 14Human Remains

206 bones

Forensic AnthropologyIdentifies skeletalRemains where bones are the only evidence


Assist in investigation of crimesExamine and analyze human remains

Skills used toRecover individuals from crime scene

Reconstruct remains to analyze effects of trauma

Identify human remains when conventional methods cannot be used

Give expert testimony

Forensic Anthropology

Remains human?Single individual or several?When did death occur?Was the body disturbed post-mortem?Gender, race, age?Cause of death?Type of death?Signs of disease, old injuries?Height, weight, physique estimated?Functions of the Skeleton:

Internal structure and support

Protection of vital organs

Attachment for muscles

Make blood cells

Storage of minerals

Types of bones:





***Most accurate if body is found within 24 hours of death

Algor mortis; cooling of the body after death

Body cools at approx. 1-1.5 degrees per hour until environmental temp is reached.

Researcher must consider factors such asEnvironmental temp.Type of clothingIs clothing wet? (aids cooling)Air movement (aids cooling)Layers of clothing (prevents cooling)Surface area/body mass ratio(small bodies will cool more quickly)Glaister formula gives hours elapsed:

98.4 internal temp________________

1.51. Determining time of deathB. Livor mortis; purple or red discoloration of the skin after death, caused by pooling of the blood due to gravity.

Begins .5 hr after death, most evident within 12 hr. After 12 hr discoloration will not move regardless of how the body is handled or moved.

Areas in contact with ground (or anything) show no discoloration because capillaries are compressed.C. Rigor mortis; stiffness in skeletal muscles 2-3 hrs after death, lasting until ~30 hrs.Smaller muscles first. Affected by temp, dehydration, condition of muscles, use prior to death, etc.Osteology; the study of bonesOsteons;

2. Animal vs Human Bone

In animals, these osteons would occur in rows (osteon banding) or rectagular shapes (plexiform bone).

Sheep tibia

Human Animal3. Estimating Height

using long bones.humerusradiusfemurtibiaSince men and women have different proportions of long bone length to total body height, we have a different formula for each sex

Height (cm)=femur x 2.21 + 61.41femur x 2.23 +69.08

tibia x 2.53 + 72.57tibia x 2.39 + 81.68

humerus x 3.14 + 64.97humerus x 2.97 + 73.57

radius x 3.87 + 73.50radius x 3.65 + 80.404. Sex Determination

Using the pelvis

These three bones fuse together to make the os coxa,or half of the pelvis.

Also, the ventral arc and the width of the pubic body

Pg. 418 in text

using the skull

Use page 421 to add other features

5. Age Determination

Epiphyses; growth plates at the end of long bones that fuse to the bone during early adulthood. (pg 423 of text)Using cranial sutures

Sagittal Suture closed:26 or older29 or older

Sagittal Suture completely open:Younger than 32Younger than 35

Using the os pubis

Furrows (youngest) SmoothBreakdown of bone6. Determining RaceCaucasoid; European, Middle Eastern, East Indian descent

Negroid; African, Aboriginal, Melanesian descent

Mongoloid; Asian, Native American, Polynesian descent

History of Forensic AnthropologyEnd of 19th centuryDr. Thomas Dwight Father of American (1843-1911) Forensic Anthropology

Dr. Thomas Dwight..

Looked at clues to ID a person from bones

Other leading forensic anthropologistsDr. George DorseyNational Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.


Dr. T.D. Stewart Curator from the Smithsonian Institute

Helped ID casualties from WWII and the Korean WarCILHICentral Identification Laboratory in Hawaii

1. ResponsibilityIdentify and repatriate American soldiers

2. How remains are analyzed..

Teams travel to field locations

Statistical methods are usedTo differentiate remains from those of the native population

The remains are taken to CILHIWhere a biological profile is created and compared to a database

Multidisciplinary approach

TEAM APPROACHForensic Pathology Determines cause and manner of death by autopsy