Book Review

Practical Homicide Investigation: Tactics, Procedures, and Forensic Techniques

Reference: Geberth, V. Practical Homicide Investigation: Tactics Procedures, and Forensic Techniques, 4th ed.; CRC Press: Boca Raton, FL, 2006; 999 pages; ISBN: 0 8493 3303 2 (hard), $99.95.

It has been ten years since the third edition of Practical Homicide Investigation was published. Most readers will feel the fourth edition was well worth the wait.

The most notable improvement in Mr. Geberth's latest offering is the image quality. Nearly all of the crime scene photographs are now presented in color. Updates of prior images, as well as new photographs and numerous professional medical illustrations, undoubtedly improve the quality of the book. Also, the text exhibits better formatting and wording than its predecessors.

There is a great deal of updated information presented. Expanded sections on both buried body cases and crime scene photographs are but two examples. Additional legal considerations for the homicide crime scene search are provided, with several cases painfully reminding law enforcement that there is no "homicide scene exception" to the Fourth Amendment. A section on IBIS is now included in the chapter on evidence collection.

New chapters addressing forensic DNA analysis and equivocal death investigations are included. While the former provides an exhaustive amount of information, much of it delves into the scientific and technical aspects of the procedures, thus going beyond the basic needs of collection and preservation for the crime scene examiner or detective. The latter offers four case studies in this intriguing "gray area" of death investigation.

This book continues to be a solid and necessary resource for anyone tasked with the responsibility of investigating not only homicides, but also other manners of death.

John P. Black
Columbia, SC

Journal of Forensic Identification
57 (1), 2007 \ 97-98
The International Association for Identification

The Journal of Forensic Identification is the official publication of the International Association for Identification and is devoted to publication of research and information about Forensic Identification in its various disciplines. These include Friction Ridge Skin Identification, Footwear and Tiretrack Examination, Firearm and Toolmark Examination, Questioned Documents, Polygraph Examination, Forensic Photography and Electronic Imaging, Forensic Art, Crime Scene Investigation, Bloodstain Pattern Identification, Forensic Laboratory Examination, Forensic Odontology, Digital Evidence, Forensic Anthropology and other Matters of interest in Forensic Disciplines.

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