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ISBN: 9781552214121-20

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Forensic Toxicology — Alcohol and Drugs

From: Lawyer's Guide to the Forensic Sciences


Discusses forensic alcohol and drug toxicology, focusing on the science of forensic alcohol and drug toxicology and specifically considering breath and blood alcohol testing and forensic toxicological analysis. Extensive legal context is also provided.



James Wigmore

James G. Wigmore, HBSc, worked as a forensic alcohol toxicologist at the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto from 1976 until his retirement in 2005. He obtained his honours bachelor of science degree from the University of Toronto in 1980. He is a designated analyst under section 254(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada and was a member of the national advisory board, the Alcohol Test Committee (which advises the federal Department of Justice on breath and blood alcohol testing) from 1993 to 2005. Mr. Wigmore has testified in over 600 criminal trials at various levels of court, as well as in civil and coroner cases, and has published more than fifty articles in the field of forensic alcohol toxicology. In October 2005, he was the recipient of the most prestigious award of the Canadian Society of Forensic Sciences, the Derome Award, which recognizes outstanding contributions to the field of forensic science. Between 2004 and 2012, Mr. Wigmore was a faculty member of the Center for Studies for Law in Action and as such lectured at the Borkenstein Course at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. His recently published book, Wigmore on Alcohol: Forensic Alcohol Toxicology for the Medicolegal Professional (Irwin Law, 2011) has received international acclaim.

James Watterson

James Watterson, PhD, F-ABFT, is an associate professor in the Department of Forensic Science at Laurentian University. He obtained his bachelor of science degree in chemistry from McGill University and his master of science and doctor of philosophy degrees, both in analytical chemistry, from the University of Toronto. Dr. Watterson worked as a forensic toxicologist at the Centre of Forensic Sciences in Toronto before joining the faculty at Laurentian University. He is a consulting forensic toxicologist and a fellow of the American Board of Forensic Toxicology (F-ABFT). He is cross-appointed to the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry and the biomolecular sciences program at Laurentian University.

Caitlin Pakosh

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.