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Georgia McCrady

October 9, 2015
Evidence Report for Case # 077, Anna Garcia decedent
INTRODUCTION
Early morning on a hot, 92°F day, an emergency call came in. A man who was worried about his
neighbor called to inform the police. His neighbor, Anna Garcia was not answering her door or
phone and her dog was excitedly barking for the past two hours. H noted that she had been
wearing a sweater the last time he saw her even though they were having a heat wave. The
police and medical technicians arrived at the scene at 9:56 am, 11 minutes after the call had been
made. After breaking down the door, they found Anna’s lifeless body face down lying on the
floor in the hallway. Inside the house it was 73˚F. Anna was determined dead by the EMT. Crime
scene investigators and the medical examiner were both dispatched to the house.
SUMMARY OF FINDINGS
Crime Scene Evidence
Drug analysis. At the scene of the crime two unknown pills were found. In order to determine
what the pills were we had to experiment with different substances and compare them to the pill
substance. First we gathered cocaine, acetaminophen, acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin),
methamphetamine, ecstasy, and the unknown substance. We observed each substance’s
appearance and texture. All of the substances, including the unknown substance, were white. The
cocaine, acetaminophen, and ecstasy were powdery, while the acetylsalicylic acid,
methamphetamine, and unknown substance were grainy. Next we tested the effect different
chemicals had on the substances. First we added RxN to Ind 1 to each substance. It had no effect
on cocaine. When added to the acetylsalicylic acid and the unknown substance, it dissolved. The
acetaminophen slightly fizzed when it was added. When we added it to the methamphetamine, it
absorbed the chemical, while it slid off the ecstasy. Then we added RxN to Ind 2. When added to
cocaine it started to fizz and change color. Acetaminophen fizzed and turned black when it was
added. The acetylsalicylic acid and unknown substance turned yellow and smelled like paint.
When added to methamphetamine it turned yellow, while the ecstasy turned black. Next we
added RxN to Ind 3 to each of the various drugs. The acetylsalicylic acid and the unknown
substance, yet again, had the same reaction, when added it dissolved and smelled like vinegar.

When we added it to the cocaine, it started to fizz and smell. The methamphetamine absorbed it,
while it slid off of the ecstasy. The acetaminophen fizzed more than the others when we added it.
Finally once all of the data was collected we could deduce the identity of the unknown
substance. When we looked at how each of the substances reacted, comparing that to how the
unknown substance reacted, we saw that acetylsalicylic acid and the unknown substance reacted
the same way each time. Once we saw this we knew that the unknown substance was
acetylsalicylic acid, or aspirin.
Fingerprint analysis. At the crime scene fingerprints were found on the overturned table. Once
we collected the fingerprints we had to compare each of the persons of interest’s fingerprints to
those found at the scene of the crime. The first step to find who the fingerprints belonged to was
to figure out w\each person’s ridge pattern. There are four different ridge patterns, radial loop,
whorl, plain arch, and tented arch. When we compared the persons of interest’s we determined
that Alex Garcia, Lucy Leffingwell, and the fingerprints found at the scene had a radial loop
pattern. Erica Piedmont and Anna Garcia had a whorl pattern. Doug Greene’s fingerprint had a
plain arch. Because Anna, Erica and Doug’s fingerprint ridge patterns were not the same as the
ones found at the scene, they were

. The only two whose ridge pattern matched were Alex and

Lucy’s, so next we had to find 10 minutiae. The fingerprint found at the crime scene had multiple
forks, a hook, an eye, a delta, and an ending ridge. When we compared that to those of Lucy and
Alex we found that Alex’s was the exact same as the one found at the crime scene, therefore the
fingerprints belonged to him.
Footprint analysis. Another piece of evidence obtained from the scene of the crime were
shoeprints. To determine who they belong to we obtained each persons of interest’s shoes to
compare the bottoms to the print found in Anna’s home. Because each shoe’s pattern was
different, it was easy to compare them to the one obtained from the crime scene. After observing
each shoe we determined that the pattern on Anna’s shoe matched the one from the scene. The
person whose shoeprint was found at the crime scene was Anna Garcia.
Blood type. At the crime scene a puddle of blood and blood spatter was found near Anna’s body.
We needed to determine the blood type of that found at the scene, that of each person of interest,
and Anna’s we had to test each blood sample with three different anti-serums and how they
reacted. First we added Anti-A Serum to each blood sample. The blood samples from the scene,
Anna, Erica, and Lucy clumped, while the samples from Alex and Doug’s did not. Next we

added Anti-B Serum to each blood sample. Alex and Lucy’s blood samples clumped up, but the
sample from the scene, Anna, Doug, and Eric’s did not clump. Then Anti-Rh was added to the
blood samples. Anna’s, Doug’s, and the blood form the crime scene clumped. Alex’s, Erica’s, and
Lucy’s samples didn’t clump. Finally, we analyzed the data collected. We figured out each
person’s blood type by the blood samples reacted to each serum. Alex Garcia’s blood type is B-,
Doug’s is O+, Erica’s is A-, and Lucy’s is AB. The blood found at the crime scene was type A+,
which was also Anna’s blood type, therefore the blood belonged to her.
Hair analysis. A piece of hair was obtained at the crime scene to be analyzed as a piece of
evidence. We observed each person of interest’s hair samples and compared them to the one
found in Anna Garcia’s home. The only person whose hair sample matched that of the one
obtained from the crime scene was Anna. Each other hair sample had a different pattern and
color, so their hair could not have been the one found at the scene.
Blood Spatter
The experiment. In order to determine how far from the ground the blood was dropped, we had
to test how drop height effects the diameter of the blood spatter. First we had to identify the
problem, which was, how does height effect the spatter of the blood/? Next we had to form a
hypothesis, if height of the blood dropped increases then the diameter of the blood drop will be
larger. Our independent variable for this experiment was the height at which the blood was
dropped and the dependent variable was the diameter of the blood spatter. Our controlled
variables were what we used to drop the blood and the amount dropped. Then we gathered the
material we would need in order to complete the lab. The material were a pipette, gloves, lab
coat or apron, a meter stick, and white paper. After we had all of our materials we had to plan the
experiment. We dropped the set amount of blood (2ml) from varying heights (by 20 cm). We
taped up two meter sticks on the wall and dropped blood at varying heights. Then we measured
the blood spatter from one speck to the one on the opposite side instead of measuring the large
drop of blood on the paper.
Table 1. Blood Spatter Analysis.
Diameter of
Height (cm.)

blood spatter

20

(cm.)
Trial 1
3

Average
Trial 2
2.5

Trial 3
4

3.16

40
8.5
9.5
9
9
60
11
17
16
15.3
80
26
23
20
23
100
27
30
32
29.6
200
38
30
35
34.3
Although we did not measure correctly there was still a relationship between the diameter of the
blood spatter and the height at which the blood was dropped. The higher up the blood was
dropped the larger the diameter of the blood spatter was. By measuring the diameter of the blood
spatter found at the scene we found that the blood fell from about 40-50 cm.
Time of Death
The experiment. When police arrived at Anna’s house they found her already dead, so we
needed to find out her time of death. In order to do so we first needed to know how ambient
temperature effects cooling of the body. First we identified the problem, how does ambient
temperature effect body cooling and what was the time of death of Anna Garcia? Next we
formed our hypothesis. If ambient temperature effects body temperature, then the body would
cool at different rates. Our independent variable was the temperature, the dependent variable was
the time it took for the body to cool, and our control was the amount of water and sodium
polyacrylate. Then we gathered the materials we needed in order to perform the experiment. We
gathered a Vernier temperature probe, a ring stand with a clamp, 3 test tubes, sodium
polyacrylate, weigh boats, a balance, a thermometer, 37˚C water, a graduated cylinder, room
temperature water, and an ice water bath. To begin the experiment we filled a beaker with
200mL if room temperature water and another beaker with 50 degrees Celsius water. Then we
measured 0.1 grams of sodium polyacrylate and added that to 20 mL of 37˚C water to create
waterlock. We hooked up the temperature probe to our computer on logger pro. Then we placed
the test tube containing the waterlock into the 50 degree Celsius water bath and let it sit. We
recorded the temperature of the waterlock at 0 minutes and every 5 minutes after that. We
repeated these steps using different temperatures for the water baths, 50 degrees, 22 degrees, and
10 degrees.
Table 2. Time of Death.

Environment

Temperature

Temperature

of Water Bath of Water
Lock (◦C)

Temp.
Change

Rate of
Change

Hot
Room Temp
Cold

(◦C)
50
21
10

0 min
32.7
32
23.1

5

10

15

20

min
35.3
32
10.8

min
33.8
21.4
11.3

min
32.3
21.2
12.2

min
28.2
21.1
13.1

(◦C)
4
11
10

0.36
0.55
0.62

Figure 1. Time of Death.

After we finished out experiment we used the Glaister equation to determine Anna’s time of
death. The Glaistere equation is a way of determining the time of death. It is (98.4 – measured
rectal temperature) ÷ 1.5= approximate hours since death. We plugged in for Anna’s measured
rectal temperature and got is (98.4 – 92.4) ÷ 1.5= 4. Anna was discovered at 9:56 am and she
died 4 hours before then making her approximate time of death around 7:00 am.
DNA Analysis
Gel electrophoresis. At the scene of the crime genetic material was obtained and DNA was
collected from it. DNA samples were collected from each person of interest and Anna in order to
determine who it belonged to. We started out by cutting the each DNA sample at GGCC between
the G and C. Then we counted how many base pairs there were in each section. The one found at

the crime scene had 5 sections with 12 in the first, 23 in the second, 11, 33, and 24. Alex’s had 4
sections with 34, 44, 18, and 6. Lucy had 3 sections with 12, 67, and 24, while Erica had 4
sections with 19, 15, 56, and 12. Doug’s DNA sample had 3 sections with 35, 11, and 57. Anna’s
sample matched the one found at the crime with 5 sections that had 12, 23, 11, 33, and 24 base
pairs.
Autopsy
The autopsy revealed that Anna had trace amounts of acetylsalicylic acid, no evidence of alcohol,
and no evidence of overdose. She had an injury on her right temple with and open wound and
pre-mortem bruising, and there were signs of a recently healed right proximal humerus as well as
the left distal tibia. There was generalized pallor and evidence of oxygen deprivation, evidence
of vomit in oral cavity, blunt trauma to the head from a fall against a solid object, and edema of
the ankles.
CONCLUSION
This case began with a call from a concerned neighbor. When Anna Garcia was found dead in
her home the investigation began. Evidence collected from the scene was collected and analyzed.
It was found that the hair, shoeprint, blood, hair, and DNA belonged to the victim, Anna Garcia.
The fingerprint belonged to her ex-husband Alex. At the scene two unknown pills were found,
which we figured out were aspirin. At the crime scene there was blood spatter, which could tell
us if a weapon was used and where it was dropped from. We discovered that the blood most
likely fell off of the table which she probably hit her head on. Anna was found already dead, so
we had to figure out her time of death which was around 7:00 am. As the evidence was collected
it became clearer what her manner of death was. Now we know that her manner of death was
most likely accidental or natural.