Uniting forensics, law, and social science in meaningful and relevant ways, Forensic Science and the Administration of Justice is structured around current research on how forensic evidence is being used and how it is impacting the justice system. This unique book—written by nationally known scholars in the field—includes five sections that explore the demand for forensic services, the quality of forensic services, the utility of forensic services, post-conviction forensic issues, and the future role of forensic science in the administration of justice. The authors offer policy-relevant directions for both the criminal justice and forensic fields and demonstrate how the role of the crime laboratory in the American justice system is evolving in concert with technological advances as well as changing demands and competing pressures for laboratory resources.

The Demand for Forensic Services
The demand for forensic services

No one seriously questions whether the demand for forensic services has increased over the past several decades. There is ample proof that over this period, more evidence has been submitted to crime laboratories, used in criminal investigations, and presented in judicial proceedings. What is commonly debated, however, are the sources of the increased demand and the role (and effect) of forensic evidence on the administration of justice. This section includes three readings that speak to the issue of demand. First, in “A Historical Review of the Demand for Forensic Evidence,” Joseph L. Peterson begins by taking the reader through an important discussion of forensic evidence potential—that is, what physical evidence is and what it can tell ...

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