2. Identification of severely incinerated human remains: The need for a cooperative approach between forensic specialities. A case report

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Positive identification of incinerated human remains can be a perplexing problem, especially when there is no genetic material remaining for DNA analysis. This paper illustrates the importance of a multi-disciplinary approach to the identification of such remains, and explores the processes involved in the various effects of heat upon human bone and teeth, and the implications this has for positive identification. A case study is presented to illustrate the various problems encountered and the importance of discovering comprehensive ante-mortem records of the deceased. It is submitted that forensic odontologiste and anthropologists be included in the body recovery process, both to maximise the recovery of evidence, and to ensure that all possible avenues for positive identification are explored, so as to avoid the need to rely upon the less robust method of circumstantial identification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)356-361
Number of pages6
JournalMedicine, Science and the Law
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003

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