In 1948, the First Mass Fingerprinting Operation Snagged a Horrific Child Killer

It was an unbelievably monstrous crime: a three-year-old who was in the hospital recovering from pneumonia was snatched from her bed in the middle of the night, sexually assaulted, and murdered. It appeared the girl had been held by her legs and swung skull-first into a wall until she died. »10/20/15 1:25pm10/20/15 1:25pm


How the Chinese developed forensic science in the 12th century

The fascinating legend of the Shitz duzhe extended all over China in the twelfth century: the Shitz duzhe came from a lineage of forensic judges, allegedly escaped from the fires of hell, whose supernatural powers allowed them to see through flesh, commune with the spirits, and solve the most mysterious crimes. For… »7/10/13 6:36pm7/10/13 6:36pm

How did Pablo Neruda really die? Forensic science weighs in.

Almost 40 years ago, Chilean poet Pablo Neruda died. Whether the Nobel prizewinner’s death was from prostate cancer (the official diagnosis) or poisoning has been a longstanding mystery. But earlier this week, Neruda's body was removed from its tomb, launching a forensic investigation that could establish once and for… »4/11/13 9:40am4/11/13 9:40am

6 Historical Forensic Detectives Who Deserve Their Own TV Shows

We've seen not one but two modern reinterpretations of Sherlock Holmes in the last couple of years, plus countless procedural dramas, including forensic-themed shows like Bones and CSI. Meanwhile, TV audiences are utterly charmed by historical dramas like Downton Abbey and Boardwalk Empire. And just this summer, ABC… »2/17/13 10:00am2/17/13 10:00am

How forensic pathologists used maggots to identify an "unrecognizable" body

Police investigators recently uncovered a body in Mexico that was so badly burned and unrecognizable that even its DNA could not be extracted. Desperate to identify the body, a team of pathologists took a chance by analyzing the stomach contents of the maggots who were feasting on the corpse. Much to their surprise,… »10/01/12 6:55pm10/01/12 6:55pm