Discusses forensic anthropology, beginning with an overview of the science of forensic anthropology, which is used to identify the biological profile and provide trauma analysis. The role of the forensic anthropologist in criminal cases is also explained, and legal context is given.
Tracy Rogers, BA, MA, PhD, is the director of the Forensic Science Program at the University of Toronto Mississauga and an associate professor of anthropology. She is a forensic anthropologist who has been actively involved in case work since 1998, and is currently a consultant to the Ontario Forensic Pathology Service. Dr. Rogers has worked on cases in Ontario, Manitoba, and British Columbia, and most notably was the primary forensic anthropologist during the investigation of serial killer Robert Pickton in 2002–2003. She has been qualified as an expert witness in the B.C. Supreme Court, the Court of Queen’s Bench of Manitoba, and the Ontario Court of Justice. Her research interests involve the identification of unknown skeletal remains, including methods of estimating the age-at-death of an individual from the skeleton; skeletal sex determination; skeletal techniques for assessing the ancestry/biogeographical origin of the deceased; and positive identification of unidentified human remains. Related topics include factors influencing skeletal health, the study of juvenile skeletons, and trauma analysis. She also researches the application of new technologies to the documentation and analysis of outdoor crime scenes and clandestine graves, including 3D methods of capturing data that are both geospecific and quantifiable.
Caitlin M. Pakosh, HBSc, JD, has been working as case management counsel of Innocence Canada (formerly known as AIDWYC) since 2012 and is responsible for managing the Association’s cases across Canada. She obtained her honours bachelor of science degree, specializing in forensic anthropology and earning a minor in biology, from the University of Toronto Mississauga in 2008. Her undergraduate thesis, which examined the decomposition of dismembered pig limbs enclosed in plastic bags and submerged in Lake Ontario, was conducted during her internship with the Toronto Police Service Marine Unit and published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences in 2009. Ms. Pakosh obtained her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Calgary in 2011. She has appeared in the Court of Appeal for Ontario and has worked on intervener and appellate cases that have appeared at a variety of levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as ministerial review applications. Since 2013, Ms. Pakosh has cross-examined forensic science students in annual mock trials at the University of Toronto Mississauga, where students practise being expert witnesses. She is a member of the Criminal Lawyers’ Association and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. She is also an associate member of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the Canadian Society of Forensic Science.