Category Archives: Technology

NFSTC’s live exploitation demo at SOFIC

NFSTC provided an expeditionary site exploitation demonstration at the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC) in Tampa, FL on May 15. The SOFIC conference offers opportunities for defense providers and special operations program managers to gather and share ideas.

The demonstration scenario was one faced by soldiers far too often, and increasingly by domestic law enforcement as well: a car bomb. In the scenario, operatives had retrieved a detonation device and unknown powders from a car. As the NFSTC team demonstrated how field intelligence information can be gathered by a well trained team in very little time using portable technologies.

First, the detonation device, a cell phone, was photographed and swabbed for DNA. This would normally be done after the phone is stripped of digital evidence.

Latent prints were discovered on the phone and the car door and developed using spray fingerprint power. The advantages of the powder are that far less powder needs to be used, even in windy conditions, resulting in a cleaner work area and better print visibility.

Next, the prints were lifted using tape and photographed for enrollment in biometric databases.

Once the biometric information was removed, the next team member used an Elite 100 chemical detection device (Field Forensics) to swab the phone for explosive residue, which was positively identified as TNT. In addition, the unknown powder was identified as ammonium nitrate by using the TruDefender spectrometer (Thermo Scientific).

In less than 15 minutes, our well-trained team triaged evidence, gathered biometric and chemical evidence and prepared a preliminary report for the next investigation steps.

See more here:
The Tampa Tribune covered NFSTC and field technologies (second clip in the video):
http://www.clipsyndicate.com/video/playlist/29521/4059298

Defense Media Network has posted video of the demonstration:
http://www.defensemedianetwork.com/stories/nfstc-at-sofic/

Happy New Year from NFSTC!

The new year is always a great time to welcome new challenges, excitement and new horizons. What better way to kick off 2013 than a virtual tour of the National Forensic Science Technology Center in beautiful Largo, Florida. The weather is sunny, the seagulls are soaring and the bloodstains are fresh and ready for analysis. Join us for a grand tour of our facilities and see what’s going on at NFSTC!

Click below to start your tour now!

Or you can visit NFSTC’s YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/TheNFSTC

From all of us at NFSTC, have a happy, safe and prosperous 2013.

STEM TEC students get hands-on experience with crime scene photography

On June 26th, NFSTC hosted nearly 50 high school students from Pinellas County as part of the Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM), Training for Emerging Careers (TEC): Summer Career Institute. The program introduces students between the ages of 14 and 17 to STEM careers. For the third year, NFSTC has opened its training facility to students for hands-on tours and instruction on various forensic science and crime scene investigation topics.

This year, students participated in a mini-course on crime scene photography and the High Tech Crime Institute presented information about cell phone forensics. The tours culminated with several hands-on exercises in which the students learned to document the crime scene and evidence. The scenarios included:

  • Inspecting a vehicle at a border checkpoint
  • Investigating a breaking and entering
  • Documenting a clandestine lab

“Gaining a solid footing in science and math is critical for so many reasons. Jobs are going high-tech; take DNA or cybercrime for example,” says Kevin Lothridge, CEO of NFSTC. “The key to getting these kids interested in science is not scaring them with how complex an activity might be, it is getting them engaged, and that’s what we are doing with this event. And with so many new technologies on the horizon, opportunities for exciting careers will only grow.”

The STEM TEC program, developed by Junior Achievement and WorkNet Pinellas, provides career exploration and workplace readiness training to economically disadvantaged students through a four-week summer program and year-round engagements. The program includes employer site visits to gain job shadowing experience in STEM specific fields.

For more information on the STEM TEC program, visit www.worknetpinellas.org.

NFSTC announces DNA Technical Review services

With today’s laboratories often stretched to the limit, the technical review step for forensic and database DNA testing can create a huge hurdle to timely casework. NFSTC now offers technical review services for case work and databasing, as allowed by the FBI Quality Assurance Standards (QAS) for DNA Databasing Laboratories  and Quality Assurance Standards for Forensic DNA Testing Laboratories (9/1/2011), to get your eligible profiles reviewed for faster entry into CODIS.

Laboratories can improve turn-around time while keeping analysts working the current case load, improve the chances that a perpetrator can be apprehended before striking again and exonerate falsely accused individuals.   

NFSTC offers:

  • A nationwide team of experienced casework and database analysts
  • Established processes to keep casework and database case reviews in compliance with the FBI Quality Assurance Standards (QAS) and prevent conflicts of interest
  • Flexible scheduling for on-site casework and/or database sample reviews
  • Secure file transfer systems for affordable off-site casework and/or database sample reviews

Our analysts are available for proficiency testing and will work in compliance with all laboratory requirements and protocols.  In addition, paperwork will be provided to the laboratory to demonstrate compliance with the FBI QAS.

 As per NIJ’s FY 2012 DNA Backlog Reduction Program, outsourced technical review costs can be included in your grant application. Rest assured that NFSTC will coordinate your review team in compliance with NIJ solicitation criteria and our costs have been vetted through GSA.

Our goal is to provide convenient, high-quality services to help your laboratory manage caseloads and backlogs, allowing you to optimally serve your community. For more information, quotes and scheduling, please contact us at sales@nfstc.org.