Appendix A

Appendix A - Sociology and Anthropology 252: Appendix...

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Appendix A: Forensic Anthropology Forensic Anthropology is an applied branch of biological anthropology in which principles of osteology and skeletal biology are used in legal or criminal investigations. Reconstructing the circumstances not only of homicides but also of accidental deaths, suicides, war crimes, and combat deaths. Forensic anthropologists bring a broad perspective of natural human variation, human osteology, and natural selection to their work. Because the morphological form of the skeleton of a human is dictated by its function in life and its evolutionary history, the forensic anthropologist can reconstruct what happened to a victim just before, around the time of, and after death and determine the probably age, sex, and ancestry of the victim from skeletal remains. Usually involved when soft tissue remains are absent or too badly decomposed to help with assessment of the cause and manner of death. The Investigative Process: generally begins at the scene of recovery, with the most immediate work being done on site where the body is found or through to be buried. The area is cordoned off to limit disturbance. The area is surveyed for additional remains and may undertake excavation; the use of archaeological techniques to retrieve additional remains Once recovered, the remains are moved to the lab for more detailed examination. There they are logged into evidence files, and a strict chain of custody is established to ensure that they cannot be tampered with in case they become evidence. The remains may be cleaned of adhering soft tissue and dirt, then laid out in anatomical position, the way they would have looked in the skeleton in life. An osteological inventory is made of each bone present. Most adult humans have 206 bones, many of which are extremely small. The bodies of fetuses and children contain many more bones because
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Appendix A - Sociology and Anthropology 252: Appendix...

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