Primeau Forensics https://www.primeauforensics.com/blog/ Wed, 09 Oct 2019 19:13:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.3 https://www.primeauforensics.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/cropped-Primeau-Forensics-Logo-White-Background-Small-32x32.jpg Primeau Forensics https://www.primeauforensics.com/blog/ 32 32 With regard to voice identification, it is scientifically known that we all have distinctive characteristics to our voice and words as well as how we pronounce those words. Each of us has a unique nasal cavity, larynx, teeth, tongue, and mouth. These distinct characteristics all come together and create a unique sounding voice that can be examined and analyzed to determine if the voices in question are from the same person. <br /> My forensic philosophy is that authentication and clarification of audio/video media combines art as well as science. The methods that I use require attention to detail and scientific principles, complemented by an appreciation for clarity and aesthetics. My techniques are derived from both a formal education and the application of skills gained by working in many forensics situations. <br /> I also look at forensics as an experimental science because there are no two cases that are the same. As a forensic expert I conduct experiments that include variables and that measure how each outcome pertains to the scientific aspect of the case at hand. My forensic processes that I use to arrive at my opinions are accepted in the scientific community and are structured and methodological. I always take scrupulous (work product) notes that are a part of each case. Primeau Forensics Primeau Forensics primeauforensics@gmail.com primeauforensics@gmail.com (Primeau Forensics) Primeau Forensics http://www.primeauforensics.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/PODCAST-THUMBNAIL-SMALL.jpg https://www.primeauforensics.com/blog/ Forensic Audio Enhancement -Equalization https://www.primeauforensics.com/forensic-audio-enhancement-equalization/ Wed, 01 Jul 2015 20:24:21 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=725 https://www.primeauforensics.com/forensic-audio-enhancement-equalization/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/forensic-audio-enhancement-equalization/feed/ 0 <p>Forensic audio enhancement is a scientific process. Remove the unwanted sound and increase the wanted sound. In many cases, based on our 34 years of experience, the wanted sound is most always dialogue. The Use of Equalizers for Forensic Audio Enhancement An equalizer is one of the most important filters or tools for audio enhancement. […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/forensic-audio-enhancement-equalization/">Forensic Audio Enhancement -Equalization</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> Forensic Audio Enhancement -EqualizationForensic audio enhancement is a scientific process. Remove the unwanted sound and increase the wanted sound. In many cases, based on our 34 years of experience, the wanted sound is most always dialogue.

The Use of Equalizers for Forensic Audio Enhancement

An equalizer is one of the most important filters or tools for audio enhancement. This is true for an audio engineer as well as an Audio Forensic Expert. There are many different types of equalizers with different capabilities. The core functions are always the same. Users may increase or decrease sound levels and frequencies. Frequencies that should be considered when performing forensic enhancement are 20 Hz to 20 kHz. All frequencies that fall into that range  are called ‘frequency bands.’ Each frequency band is typically marked by its center frequency, while the width of the band will vary between different equalizers. Some equalizers even allow the frequency band and the width to be adjusted.

These tools are crucial when performing a forensic audio enhancement. Noise and other unwanted extraneous frequency content is usually the biggest issue with audio recordings. Equalizers and filters offer the ability to remove narrow ranges of unwanted frequencies so that these unwanted noises can, for the most part, be removed from the recording. This focused process leaves all wanted frequencies like dialogue untouched.

Adobe Audition

One of the software programs we use at Primeau Forensics is Adobe Audition. It comes with the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite. Our favorite filter in Audition is the Multi-band Compressor. A compressor is another type of filter that helps enhance an audio recording to expose wanted sounds and remove unwanted sound. Another company, iZotope, has added some of their filters to Adobe Audition. Their noise reduction filter is also an excellent tool for removing unwanted sound.

Critical Listening Skills

Critical listening skills develop over time and are also referred to as ear training. Each of us has a different perception of sound. In other words, our hearing is unique to each individual. What we hear from a set of speakers or headphones is unique to us as individuals. In order to develop your critical listening muscle, you must experiment and observe. Remember, science is observation.

When using an equalizer, it’s important to be careful to boost or increase frequencies and amplitude (volume) gradually. It is also important to reduce or cut different frequency ranges selectively. This is because some of the time, removing a certain noise that appears to be at a certain frequency may seem to help. However, there could also be a lot of important wanted or voice content in that same frequency range. Making the proper adjustments with an equalizer requires both experience with the equipment, critical listening skills, and a lot of trial and error.

When we process an audio recording for forensic enhancement, we note the types of filtering and associated outcomes in our work notes. Work notes include the various filters applied to a recording, the differences in sound quality and intelligibility. The settings are then noted. Experience, the more time spent and the more audio enhancements that are successfully completed. We are extremely familiar with frequency ranges and improving the quality of audio recordings.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the use of equalizers in forensic audio enhancements.

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Forensic audio enhancement is a scientific process. Remove the unwanted sound and increase the wanted sound. In many cases, based on our 34 years of experience, the wanted sound is most always dialogue. The Use of Equalizers for Forensic Audio Enhancem... Forensic audio enhancement is a scientific process. Remove the unwanted sound and increase the wanted sound. In many cases, based on our 34 years of experience, the wanted sound is most always dialogue. The Use of Equalizers for Forensic Audio Enhancement An equalizer is one of the most important filters or tools for audio enhancement. […] Primeau Forensics 11:13
21: Audio Enhancement – Compression https://www.primeauforensics.com/21-audio-enhancement-compression/ Thu, 28 May 2015 18:57:34 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=640 https://www.primeauforensics.com/21-audio-enhancement-compression/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/21-audio-enhancement-compression/feed/ 0 <p>As an Audio Forensic Expert, knowing what tools are available for audio enhancement and how they work is extremely important. While compressors are often thought of as tools for music production, they serve many functions in the Audio Forensic world. Like with most audio signal processors, it takes training and experience to operate compressors properly […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/21-audio-enhancement-compression/">21: Audio Enhancement – Compression</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 21: Audio Enhancement - CompressionAs an Audio Forensic Expert, knowing what tools are available for audio enhancement and how they work is extremely important. While compressors are often thought of as tools for music production, they serve many functions in the Audio Forensic world. Like with most audio signal processors, it takes training and experience to operate compressors properly and effectively when enhancing audio.

When an audio enhancement is required, the recorded signal is often very low, or the desired source is unbalanced, with other signals in the recording. Compressors can increase the gain of a recording while also balancing the levels of the sound sources. While different compressors will vary, most have the same basic controls. These include the threshold, attack, release, ratio and makeup gain.

It is easy to focus on raising the level of the desired signal with a compressor and produce a loud, but unintelligible work product. Sometimes a smaller amount of compression may have a more positive effect on the audio. An experienced Audio Forensic Expert will know how to effectively clarify the recording based on his or her knowledge of audio and signal processing.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the use of compressors in forensic audio enhancements.

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As an Audio Forensic Expert, knowing what tools are available for audio enhancement and how they work is extremely important. While compressors are often thought of as tools for music production, they serve many functions in the Audio Forensic world. As an Audio Forensic Expert, knowing what tools are available for audio enhancement and how they work is extremely important. While compressors are often thought of as tools for music production, they serve many functions in the Audio Forensic world. Like with most audio signal processors, it takes training and experience to operate compressors properly […] Primeau Forensics 9:04
20: Body-worn Cameras with Sgt. Bill Tilson https://www.primeauforensics.com/20-body-worn-cameras-with-sgt-bill-tilson/ Mon, 27 Apr 2015 18:03:12 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=627 https://www.primeauforensics.com/20-body-worn-cameras-with-sgt-bill-tilson/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/20-body-worn-cameras-with-sgt-bill-tilson/feed/ 0 <p>Sgt. Bill Tilson is a police officer with the Coeur d’Alene Police Department in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He has been working in the department since September 2002 and began working with body-worn cameras in 2012 when the department began issuing them to officers. He received a Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice and Corrections from Lewis-Clark […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/20-body-worn-cameras-with-sgt-bill-tilson/">20: Body-worn Cameras with Sgt. Bill Tilson</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 20: Body-worn Cameras with Sgt. Bill TilsonSgt. Bill Tilson is a police officer with the Coeur d’Alene Police Department in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He has been working in the department since September 2002 and began working with body-worn cameras in 2012 when the department began issuing them to officers. He received a Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice and Corrections from Lewis-Clark State College and an Associates degree in Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement Administration from the College of Southern Idaho.

Sgt. Tilson has seen first hand the benefits of body-worn cameras in law enforcement and has been a major part of their integration into the Coeur d’Alene Police Department. He has also dealt with many of the struggles that police departments are facing with the large amount of video that is being captured by these body cameras.

We suspect that if you are reading this post, you have a boy worn camera video and questions. Why are there glitches in the video recording? Does the time code numbers jump for no reason? Is the audio poor and need forensic enhancement? Does your body-worn camera recording have an established chain of custody? Good read about chain of custody: http://primeauforensics.com/establishing-a-chain-of-custody-for-audio-and-video-evidence 

Now listen in with Ed Primeau and Sgt. Bill Tilson as they discuss the benefits of body-worn cameras, the issues with storing the video, chain of custody procedures, and Federal standards for maintaining the video evidence.

photo credit: USCP4.NSM.Rally.USCG.WDC.19apr08 via photopin (license)

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Sgt. Bill Tilson is a police officer with the Coeur d’Alene Police Department in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He has been working in the department since September 2002 and began working with body-worn cameras in 2012 when the department began issuing them to... Sgt. Bill Tilson is a police officer with the Coeur d’Alene Police Department in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He has been working in the department since September 2002 and began working with body-worn cameras in 2012 when the department began issuing them to officers. He received a Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice and Corrections from Lewis-Clark […] Primeau Forensics 24:02
Audio Enhancement – Noise Reduction https://www.primeauforensics.com/audio-enhancement-noise-reduction/ Fri, 03 Apr 2015 20:24:31 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=599 https://www.primeauforensics.com/audio-enhancement-noise-reduction/#comments https://www.primeauforensics.com/audio-enhancement-noise-reduction/feed/ 1 <p>Most recordings that I come across as an Audio Forensic Expert require audio enhancement. This is because they are made in poor conditions and have an abundance of noise. Though there are many ways to reduce the noise floor in a recording, there is no guaranteed method. The noise floor can be defined as a sum of […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/audio-enhancement-noise-reduction/">Audio Enhancement – Noise Reduction</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> Audio Enhancement - Noise ReductionMost recordings that I come across as an Audio Forensic Expert require audio enhancement. This is because they are made in poor conditions and have an abundance of noise. Though there are many ways to reduce the noise floor in a recording, there is no guaranteed method. The noise floor can be defined as a sum of all of the unwanted signals in a sound source. This will include any background noise in an environment such as cars driving by, televisions or radios, or even other people besides the desired person speaking.

When reducing the noise is the best option, there are two common ways to do so in most audio editing software: noise reduction processing and filtering or equalization. Both processes have benefits and side effects when used to remove noise from a recording.

The most important thing to remember when removing noise from a recording is that the goal is to enhance or clarify the desired signal. Every audio recording is different, and as an Audio Forensic Expert it is my job to analyze and process each recording as needed. It takes training and experience to recognize what a recording needs in order to enhance or clarify it effectively.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the use of noise reduction in forensic audio enhancements.

photo credit: Neve Compressors via photopin (license)

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Most recordings that I come across as an Audio Forensic Expert require audio enhancement. This is because they are made in poor conditions and have an abundance of noise. Though there are many ways to reduce the noise floor in a recording, Most recordings that I come across as an Audio Forensic Expert require audio enhancement. This is because they are made in poor conditions and have an abundance of noise. Though there are many ways to reduce the noise floor in a recording, there is no guaranteed method. The noise floor can be defined as a sum of […] Primeau Forensics 11:52
18: Creating Video Work Product as an Audio Video Forensic Expert https://www.primeauforensics.com/18-creating-video-work-product-as-an-audio-video-forensic-expert/ Fri, 27 Feb 2015 19:24:11 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=579 https://www.primeauforensics.com/18-creating-video-work-product-as-an-audio-video-forensic-expert/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/18-creating-video-work-product-as-an-audio-video-forensic-expert/feed/ 0 <p>Video work product is a way to document forensic investigations, like evidence recovery, for reference at a later date. Processes and procedures are documented using a video camera by a forensic expert during a forensic investigation for future use. I have referred back to my video work product many times during the course of a […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/18-creating-video-work-product-as-an-audio-video-forensic-expert/">18: Creating Video Work Product as an Audio Video Forensic Expert</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 18: Creating Video Work Product as an Audio Video Forensic ExpertVideo work product is a way to document forensic investigations, like evidence recovery, for reference at a later date. Processes and procedures are documented using a video camera by a forensic expert during a forensic investigation for future use. I have referred back to my video work product many times during the course of a case when I have questions later in the evolution of the case. There are a few different digital video recording platforms that I use when creating ‘video work product’. Each one of these types of systems serves a certain purpose in assisting with a forensic investigation as well as the investigative process.

I personally use the VIEVU LE2 and LE3 body worn cameras. My main use for this body camera in my investigations is recording my forensic process in the field. This includes retrieving evidence from different systems so I can review the video later and include in my report to support the authenticity of my work product and any evidence used in the case.

Another type of digital video camera that I use to produce video recordings is a HDSLR photography camera. In some investigations, a single video recorded perspective may not be sufficient to display the forensic process or document the events. Having another high quality camera with flexibility of perspectives and interchangeable lenses can capture aspects of my investigation that body worn cameras cannot.

Video evidence produced by CCTV systems can help solve crime, as well as reproduce accidents and disasters as they occurred for play back in many different settings. A significant use a video forensic expert has when recording video from a CCTV system is to create an exemplar. This recording is used as a comparison file to the original evidence to help determine the authenticity of the original evidence.

It is a best practice of ours at Primeau Forensics to video record many forensic investigations like the exemplar creation process and evidence recovery so if anyone has any questions during the life of the case, this video work product can be referenced.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses creating Video Work Product for Forensic Investigations.

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Video work product is a way to document forensic investigations, like evidence recovery, for reference at a later date. Processes and procedures are documented using a video camera by a forensic expert during a forensic investigation for future use. Video work product is a way to document forensic investigations, like evidence recovery, for reference at a later date. Processes and procedures are documented using a video camera by a forensic expert during a forensic investigation for future use. I have referred back to my video work product many times during the course of a […] Primeau Forensics 9:13
17: How to Make Digital Audio Evidence https://www.primeauforensics.com/17-how-to-make-digital-audio-evidence/ Thu, 12 Feb 2015 19:34:30 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=561 https://www.primeauforensics.com/17-how-to-make-digital-audio-evidence/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/17-how-to-make-digital-audio-evidence/feed/ 0 <p>Digital Audio Evidence can often be one of the most important pieces of evidence for a case, so it should always be given a great deal of attention. I’m going to cover some tips on how to create the best audio recording possible, whether it’s a police interview, a concealed recording or anything in between. […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/17-how-to-make-digital-audio-evidence/">17: How to Make Digital Audio Evidence</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 17: How to Make Digital Audio EvidenceDigital Audio Evidence can often be one of the most important pieces of evidence for a case, so it should always be given a great deal of attention. I’m going to cover some tips on how to create the best audio recording possible, whether it’s a police interview, a concealed recording or anything in between.

One of the most common ways people create digital audio evidence is by using digital audio recorders. Law enforcement will often use them for interrogations and confessions, and sometimes even out in the field as a backup for their dash cam or body cam audio. People outside of law enforcement use them for creating audio evidence as well.

Tips on Creating Digital Audio Recordings

  1. Choose settings on the digital recorder that optimize the quality of the audio and optimize the amount of space on the recorder.
  2. Listen and note any extraneous noise present in the area before making the recording. If at all possible, remove this sound or find a way to work around it.
  3. Get as close to the desired sound source as possible when creating the audio recording. The closer the microphone is to the sound source, the better the level of the desired signal will be.
  4. Make sure the digital audio recorder is in an optimal location. Make sure that the microphone is facing the subject and that the recorder is relatively stable to avoid extra noise. If possible, use an external microphone to get better quality audio.
  5. Always create a test recording before the actual recording. Listen back carefully and adjust the settings of the recording and the location of the recorder to make sure it is capturing the highest possible level in the best quality.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the best practices for creating digital audio evidence.

photo credit: Ready to record! via photopin (license)

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Digital Audio Evidence can often be one of the most important pieces of evidence for a case, so it should always be given a great deal of attention. I’m going to cover some tips on how to create the best audio recording possible, Digital Audio Evidence can often be one of the most important pieces of evidence for a case, so it should always be given a great deal of attention. I’m going to cover some tips on how to create the best audio recording possible, whether it’s a police interview, a concealed recording or anything in between. […] Primeau Forensics 13:58
16: VIEVU Body Cameras with Steve Ward https://www.primeauforensics.com/16-vievu-body-cameras-with-steve-ward/ Thu, 22 Jan 2015 16:13:47 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=546 https://www.primeauforensics.com/16-vievu-body-cameras-with-steve-ward/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/16-vievu-body-cameras-with-steve-ward/feed/ 0 <p>Body worn cameras, a police officers tool for safety. We believe if there was more statistics available, it would help law enforcement officers decide to implement the use of body-worn cameras in their departments. We met with Steve Ward is the CEO and founder of VIEVU.  Vievu has since merged with Axon, one of the countries […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/16-vievu-body-cameras-with-steve-ward/">16: VIEVU Body Cameras with Steve Ward</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 16: VIEVU Body Cameras with Steve WardBody worn cameras, a police officers tool for safety. We believe if there was more statistics available, it would help law enforcement officers decide to implement the use of body-worn cameras in their departments.

We met with Steve Ward is the CEO and founder of VIEVU.  Vievu has since merged with Axon, one of the countries largest dash cam and body cam manufacturers. Mr. Ward worked as a police officer in Seattle for 13 years, including 6 years on the SWAT team. Afterwards, Mr. Ward became the Vice President of Marketing and International Sales for Taser International. He has an MBA from the Edinburgh Business School, a Certificate from the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon.  Steve Ward founded VIEVU in 2007, which manufactures high definition, wearable video cameras for law enforcement and private professionals.  These camera systems have become necessary when considering the liability present in law enforcement, and also provide strong evidence for use in court.

Steve Ward is dedicated to making VIEVU cameras the most optimal body cameras for police officers and continues to provide the most updated and cutting edge hardware and software with his cameras.  VIEVU currently provides body cameras to 16 different countries and is one of the leading companies providing body worn cameras in the United States.

Now listen in as Ed Primeau and Steve Ward discuss VIEVU and the growing need for body camera video in law enforcement.

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Body worn cameras, a police officers tool for safety. We believe if there was more statistics available, it would help law enforcement officers decide to implement the use of body-worn cameras in their departments. Body worn cameras, a police officers tool for safety. We believe if there was more statistics available, it would help law enforcement officers decide to implement the use of body-worn cameras in their departments. We met with Steve Ward is the CEO and founder of VIEVU.  Vievu has since merged with Axon, one of the countries […] Primeau Forensics 16:43
15: A Step-by-Step Approach to Forensic Audio Enhancement https://www.primeauforensics.com/15-a-step-by-step-approach-to-forensic-audio-enhancement/ Mon, 19 Jan 2015 22:02:25 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=544 https://www.primeauforensics.com/15-a-step-by-step-approach-to-forensic-audio-enhancement/#comments https://www.primeauforensics.com/15-a-step-by-step-approach-to-forensic-audio-enhancement/feed/ 1 <p>One of the most common jobs for an Audio Forensic Expert is enhancing a digital audio recording for intelligibility and clarification.  Audio evidence is often recorded in less than optimal situations with poor quality equipment. This evidence can be vital to a case and when the content of the recording cannot be heard, the evidence […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/15-a-step-by-step-approach-to-forensic-audio-enhancement/">15: A Step-by-Step Approach to Forensic Audio Enhancement</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 15: A Step-by-Step Approach to Forensic Audio EnhancementOne of the most common jobs for an Audio Forensic Expert is enhancing a digital audio recording for intelligibility and clarification.  Audio evidence is often recorded in less than optimal situations with poor quality equipment. This evidence can be vital to a case and when the content of the recording cannot be heard, the evidence can become useless.  This is why the audio enhancement process is one of the most important jobs as an Audio Forensic Expert.

There is no one way to enhance an audio recording because every recording is different and will have its own issues that make the enhancement process necessary. At the same time, it is important for the Forensic Expert to be aware of the processes available so they are prepared to handle any enhancement case that comes their way.

Critical Listening

To begin the enhancement process, the Forensic Expert should use critical listening.  Before adding any processing to the audio, they should listen through the recording multiple times and make notes on the issues they hear with the recording.  Noting different sections of the audio and marking these points can be extremely helpful when fixing different problems in the recording.

Diagnostic Tools

Some audio software includes processors that help fix clipping or clicking issues in the recording.  Using this process first will help clean up the audio as much as possible before delving into more advanced techniques.  Noise reduction is also a very helpful process for removing any background noise such that is consistent throughout the recording.

Dynamics Processing

Many recordings I receive have an overall low level to begin with and simply need an increase in gain. Compressors as well as gain plugins can help raise the overall level of the recording. Compression will also help balance all of the signals in the recording.

Equalization

Equalization is another extremely helpful tool for audio enhancement.  This will allow the Forensic Expert to remove unwanted frequencies and frequency ranges by varying amounts, as well as boost desired frequencies. When using an equalizer, the Forensic Expert should experiment using their knowledge of frequencies and what they see in the recording.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the structured approach to forensic audio enhancements.

 

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One of the most common jobs for an Audio Forensic Expert is enhancing a digital audio recording for intelligibility and clarification.  Audio evidence is often recorded in less than optimal situations with poor quality equipment. One of the most common jobs for an Audio Forensic Expert is enhancing a digital audio recording for intelligibility and clarification.  Audio evidence is often recorded in less than optimal situations with poor quality equipment. This evidence can be vital to a case and when the content of the recording cannot be heard, the evidence […] Primeau Forensics 13:23
14: Video Surveillance with David Spreadborough https://www.primeauforensics.com/14-video-surveillance-with-david-spreadborough/ Thu, 11 Dec 2014 19:30:00 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=444 https://www.primeauforensics.com/14-video-surveillance-with-david-spreadborough/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/14-video-surveillance-with-david-spreadborough/feed/ 0 <p>Video Surveillance expert David Spreadborough is a CCTV investigator and a police officer for the Cheshire Police Department in Cheshire, England.  He has been a part of the police force for 23 years and began his video forensic career in 2003.  David is a member of the Law Enforcement & Emergency Services Video Association International […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/14-video-surveillance-with-david-spreadborough/">14: Video Surveillance with David Spreadborough</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 14: Video Surveillance with David SpreadboroughVideo Surveillance expert David Spreadborough is a CCTV investigator and a police officer for the Cheshire Police Department in Cheshire, England.  He has been a part of the police force for 23 years and began his video forensic career in 2003.  David is a member of the Law Enforcement & Emergency Services Video Association International (LEVA), the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA), the CCTV National Standards Forum and he sat on the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) Working Group for CCTV.  David has taken multiple training courses covering Forensic Video Analysis, CCTV installation and retrieval and Multimedia Evidence Processing. He focuses on CCTV video evidence and has spent the last few years working with CCTV manufacturers to improve the quality of systems as well as the installation and accessibility for law enforcement.

Up until November of 2014, David was the Senior Officer within the Visual Forensic Unit in the Cheshire Police Department and oversaw all major crime video investigations in the department.  It was then decided that Police Officers could no longer hold Forensic positions within the department.  David is currently looking forward to finding new ways to use his expertise as a Forensic Video Investigator and welcomes anyone who is interested in learning more about the field to contact him.

David is dedicated to the development of Forensic Video Analysis and working with new technology to improve the field.  If you would like to contact David, you can find him on linkedin.

Suggested additional reading on video evidence retrieval: http://primeauforensics.com/forensic-digital-media-evidence-retrieval/

Now listen in as Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau and Officer David Spreadborough discuss the importance of CCTV systems for law enforcement, the advancements made in video surveillance over the last decade and the challenges being faced by Video Forensic Experts today.

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Video Surveillance expert David Spreadborough is a CCTV investigator and a police officer for the Cheshire Police Department in Cheshire, England.  He has been a part of the police force for 23 years and began his video forensic career in 2003. Video Surveillance expert David Spreadborough is a CCTV investigator and a police officer for the Cheshire Police Department in Cheshire, England.  He has been a part of the police force for 23 years and began his video forensic career in 2003.  David is a member of the Law Enforcement & Emergency Services Video Association International […] Primeau Forensics 20:51
13: Voice Identification with Maria do Carmo Gargaglione https://www.primeauforensics.com/13-voice-identification-with-maria-do-carmo-gargaglione/ Thu, 04 Dec 2014 17:27:07 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=441 https://www.primeauforensics.com/13-voice-identification-with-maria-do-carmo-gargaglione/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/13-voice-identification-with-maria-do-carmo-gargaglione/feed/ 0 <p>Maria do Carmo Gargaglione is the Director of the Division of Digital and Technological Forensic Evidence at the Public Ministry of Rio De Janeiro.  She has been a speech-language pathologist for over thirty years.  She is an expert in voice identification, facial identification and handwriting analysis.  She began working in forensics in 2000 and began working […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/13-voice-identification-with-maria-do-carmo-gargaglione/">13: Voice Identification with Maria do Carmo Gargaglione</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 13: Voice Identification with Maria do Carmo GargaglioneMaria do Carmo Gargaglione is the Director of the Division of Digital and Technological Forensic Evidence at the Public Ministry of Rio De Janeiro.  She has been a speech-language pathologist for over thirty years.  She is an expert in voice identification, facial identification and handwriting analysis.  She began working in forensics in 2000 and began working for the Public Ministry in 2005. Since then, she has continued her education in the field of digital media forensics at any given opportunity, including the courses at the National Center for Media Forensics at the University of Colorado.  She was the first in Brazil to begin a division of digital media evidence with voice identification.

If you would like to contact Maria do Carmo, she can be reached by email at maglione@globo.com.

Now listen in as Maria do Carmo and Ed Primeau discuss different techniques used for voice identification, the importance of digital forensic work in Brazil, and advice for people interested in starting a career as an Audio Forensic Expert.

For more on Voice Identification, check out Ed Primeau’s latest book, “That’s Not My Voice!” available on Amazon.

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Maria do Carmo Gargaglione is the Director of the Division of Digital and Technological Forensic Evidence at the Public Ministry of Rio De Janeiro.  She has been a speech-language pathologist for over thirty years. Maria do Carmo Gargaglione is the Director of the Division of Digital and Technological Forensic Evidence at the Public Ministry of Rio De Janeiro.  She has been a speech-language pathologist for over thirty years.  She is an expert in voice identification, facial identification and handwriting analysis.  She began working in forensics in 2000 and began working […] Primeau Forensics 16:00
12: Video Forensics with Dorothy Stout https://www.primeauforensics.com/12-video-forensics-with-dorothy-stout/ Mon, 01 Dec 2014 19:05:15 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=429 https://www.primeauforensics.com/12-video-forensics-with-dorothy-stout/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/12-video-forensics-with-dorothy-stout/feed/ 0 <p>Dorothy Stout is a Video Forensics Expert and owner of Resolution Video Inc.  She has been analyzing video since 1998 and has testified in all levels of courts in the United States.  Dorothy received her Bachelor degree in Psychology and her Masters in Forensic Science and began her career at the US Postal Inspection Service. […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/12-video-forensics-with-dorothy-stout/">12: Video Forensics with Dorothy Stout</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 12: Video Forensics with Dorothy StoutDorothy Stout is a Video Forensics Expert and owner of Resolution Video Inc.  She has been analyzing video since 1998 and has testified in all levels of courts in the United States.  Dorothy received her Bachelor degree in Psychology and her Masters in Forensic Science and began her career at the US Postal Inspection Service.  She has also performed Video Analysis for the US Department of Defense Computer Forensic Laboratory and has worked with the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Security Industry Association.  Resolution Video Inc. was founded in 2004 and has continued to provide audio and video enhancement, analysis, authentication and training services for law enforcement agencies.  Dorothy is currently an adjunct professor at George Washington University, the University of Indianapolis, and the British Columbia Institute of Technology. She also teaches training workshops around the country on both Audio and Video Forensic work.

Dorothy Stout makes sure her company demonstrates integrity, impartiality, diligence and professionalism in their work, which has made her one of the leading Video Forensic Experts in the country. If you would like to contact Dorothy or Resolution Video, they can be reached online at resvid.com or by phone at 703-759-7803.

Suggested additional treading: http://primeauforensics.com/the-forensic-expert-witness-3-tips-for-preparing-to-testify/

Now listen in as Dorothy Stout and Ed Primeau discuss the effect video evidence has had on law enforcement, the challenges and limitations faced by Video Forensic Experts and the importance of connecting with other experts when beginning your career as a Forensic Expert.

 

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Dorothy Stout is a Video Forensics Expert and owner of Resolution Video Inc.  She has been analyzing video since 1998 and has testified in all levels of courts in the United States.  Dorothy received her Bachelor degree in Psychology and her Masters in... Dorothy Stout is a Video Forensics Expert and owner of Resolution Video Inc.  She has been analyzing video since 1998 and has testified in all levels of courts in the United States.  Dorothy received her Bachelor degree in Psychology and her Masters in Forensic Science and began her career at the US Postal Inspection Service. […] Primeau Forensics 18:39
11: Talking Forensics with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Allen Combs https://www.primeauforensics.com/11-talking-forensics-with-audio-video-forensic-expert-allen-combs/ Thu, 20 Nov 2014 15:58:04 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=407 https://www.primeauforensics.com/11-talking-forensics-with-audio-video-forensic-expert-allen-combs/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/11-talking-forensics-with-audio-video-forensic-expert-allen-combs/feed/ 0 <p>Allen Combs is an Audio and Video Forensic Expert with over ten years of experience in multimedia work.  He began working as an audio engineer in recording studios and continued working in music production until making the transition into digital media forensics. When he began his work as an audio & video forensic expert, Allen […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/11-talking-forensics-with-audio-video-forensic-expert-allen-combs/">11: Talking Forensics with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Allen Combs</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 11: Talking Forensics with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Allen CombsAllen Combs is an Audio and Video Forensic Expert with over ten years of experience in multimedia work.  He began working as an audio engineer in recording studios and continued working in music production until making the transition into digital media forensics.

When he began his work as an audio & video forensic expert, Allen was trained by Thomas Owen and in 2010 started his own company, Combs Forensic Services.  Since then, he has worked for numerous clients, including both law enforcement and private citizens, and has gained experience testifying in many of his cases.  Allen is an active member of the American Board of Recorded Evidence and the Audio Engineering Society.  In addition to these organizations, he is also putting together an audio forensic training course with Dorothy Stout, owner of Resolution Video.

Allen Combs bases his company on integrity, professional expertise and dedication to their clientele.  If you would like to contact Allen or Combs Forensic Services, they can be reached through combsforensics.com or allen@combsforensics.com.

Now listen in as Ed Primeau and Allen Combs discuss the drastically changing market of Audio Engineering, the importance of continuing education in the digital media forensic field, and the challenges that individuals must face when taking on a career as a forensic expert.

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Allen Combs is an Audio and Video Forensic Expert with over ten years of experience in multimedia work.  He began working as an audio engineer in recording studios and continued working in music production until making the transition into digital media... Allen Combs is an Audio and Video Forensic Expert with over ten years of experience in multimedia work.  He began working as an audio engineer in recording studios and continued working in music production until making the transition into digital media forensics. When he began his work as an audio & video forensic expert, Allen […] Primeau Forensics 20:11
10: How to Authenticate Digital Audio Evidence https://www.primeauforensics.com/10-forensic-science-how-to-authenticate-digital-audio-evidence/ Fri, 14 Nov 2014 20:45:47 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=404 https://www.primeauforensics.com/10-forensic-science-how-to-authenticate-digital-audio-evidence/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/10-forensic-science-how-to-authenticate-digital-audio-evidence/feed/ 0 <p>To authenticate digital audio evidence is an importance process to verify the integrity of a digital audio recording in court. Establishing a solid chain of custody is the first step in the authentication process but does not in and of itself authenticate a piece of evidence. We have seen audio evidence that was not authentic and was […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/10-forensic-science-how-to-authenticate-digital-audio-evidence/">10: How to Authenticate Digital Audio Evidence</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> To authenticate digital audio evidence is an importance process to verify the integrity of a digital audio recording in court. Establishing a solid chain of custody is the first step in the authentication process but does not in and of itself authenticate a piece of evidence. We have seen audio evidence that was not authentic and was stored in the original digital audio recorder that supposedly recorded it.

So why is audio authentication so important? 

The authentication process determines whether or not the audio recording in question has been tampered with.  In this age of digital audio, edits can be made and covered up very easily. There are free versions of audio editing software available on line that can make edits that alter the events or conversation that originally occurred in digital audio recordings. Most of the time, if an audio recording is edited after downloading to a computer and before authoring a CD, the editing can be detected by analyzing the audio file.

What is the process of authenticating digital audio evidence?

There are five steps that one must complete to properly authenticate digital audio evidence.

1. Establish a chain of custody. If the expert is able to retrieve the evidence from the original source, in most cases that will automatically create and establish a chain of custody. If it’s not possible for the forensic expert to retrieve the recording, then the forensic expert must carefully go through all of the documents and reports that arrived with the evidence. When the chain of custody cannot be established, the forensic examiner must rely on other techniques as well as their own expertise to determine the authenticity of the evidence.

2. Critically listen to the audio recording. During this process the expert should note unusual sounding sections in the recording, referred to as anomalies. They should place markers near any anomalies they hear for later reference when compiling a forensic report. Inconsistencies in sound quality, noise floor, and level of the recording are all important to pay attention to.  The forensic expert should use both studio monitors and headphones with flat frequency responses to best hear everything that is going on in the recording.

3. Electronically measure aspects of the recording. The forensic expert should use the audio forensic software they have to note the frequency ranges, levels and other aspects of the recording. Marking what frequency ranges voices or other sounds are in compared to the noise floor can also help the expert better detect sudden changes and other anomalies in the recording that may indicate tampering.

4. Visually inspect the audio recording. This step will go hand in hand with electronic measurement. The forensic expert should analyze the waveform characteristics and look for any anomalies present. The expert can also use spectrum analysis and spectrograms to better see the behavior of the frequencies and detect breaks or changes in the signal or noise floor.

5. Analyze the metadata. The forensic expert will also need to inspect digital information of the recording such as the hex information, sampling rate, bit depth and file format. This will need to be compared with an exemplar recording so that anomalies can be properly detected. Digital footprints are almost always left on recordings when they are created and when they are edited using other software.

For a forensic examiner to authenticate a piece of audio evidence, the examiner must prove beyond any doubt that the recording is in its original form and has not undergone any tampering.  If a piece of evidence is not authentic, it should not be used in court because it may be incomplete or altered to purport events that did not occur.

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To authenticate digital audio evidence is an importance process to verify the integrity of a digital audio recording in court. Establishing a solid chain of custody is the first step in the authentication process but does not in and of itself authentic... To authenticate digital audio evidence is an importance process to verify the integrity of a digital audio recording in court. Establishing a solid chain of custody is the first step in the authentication process but does not in and of itself authenticate a piece of evidence. We have seen audio evidence that was not authentic and was […] Primeau Forensics 13:07
9: How to Recover Digital Media Evidence https://www.primeauforensics.com/9-how-to-recover-digital-media-evidence/ Fri, 07 Nov 2014 20:58:16 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=396 https://www.primeauforensics.com/9-how-to-recover-digital-media-evidence/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/9-how-to-recover-digital-media-evidence/feed/ 0 <p>I’d like to discuss evidence recovery, specifically digital media evidence recovery.  Having a forensic expert retrieve the evidence maintains the quality of the evidence and can help ensure that the original evidence stays intact on the original system so it can later be retrieved by other parties.  This is why it is extremely important that […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/9-how-to-recover-digital-media-evidence/">9: How to Recover Digital Media Evidence</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 9: How to Recover Digital Media EvidenceI’d like to discuss evidence recovery, specifically digital media evidence recovery.  Having a forensic expert retrieve the evidence maintains the quality of the evidence and can help ensure that the original evidence stays intact on the original system so it can later be retrieved by other parties.  This is why it is extremely important that only a trained expert retrieve the evidence.  In this episode, I will cover proper procedures for evidence retrieval, proper handling of the evidence and what precautions one should take when retrieving digital media evidence from a recording system.

Steps for Proper Evidence Retrieval

1. Research before retrieving the evidence.  The forensic expert should learn everything they can about the recording system beforehand.  Connecting with the manufacturer, reading the manual and researching further online all benefit the expert.  This will make analyzing and operating the system onsite easier for the expert and optimize the retrieval process.

2. Obtain any necessary software, proprietary player or codec. If the system records proprietary or encoded files, the expert should obtain the player or codec beforehand.  If that is not possible, the expert should be prepared to install the necessary player or codec onsite from either the recording system or client.  More often than not, modern digital surveillance systems require a special codec or proprietary player and without this installed, the forensic expert will not be able to access the digital media evidence.

3. Record the evidence retrieval process. The forensic expert should record both audio and video of the evidence retrieval to include in the chain of custody and forensic report.  When I am recovering evidence from a digital recording system, I always have a VIEVU body camera on my person, as well as a digital audio recorder in my pocket.  Along with authenticating the evidence, this can serve as the expert’s notes later on in the investigation in case they need to refer to something that was discussed during the evidence retrieval.

4. Photograph and inspect the digital recording system. The forensic expert should include photographs of the unit in their report and take careful notes on anything they notice about the unit.  This could include damage, tampering or any other abnormalities they notice on the recorder.  Along with the video recording, it is usually beneficial for the expert to photograph anything they note during the process.

5. Follow the manual for the highest quality retrieval. The expert should have the manual with them when retrieving the evidence to make sure that any copy or export is in the highest quality format and does not affect the original recorded file.
photo credit: iLike iRiver via photopin (license)

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I’d like to discuss evidence recovery, specifically digital media evidence recovery.  Having a forensic expert retrieve the evidence maintains the quality of the evidence and can help ensure that the original evidence stays intact on the original syste... I’d like to discuss evidence recovery, specifically digital media evidence recovery.  Having a forensic expert retrieve the evidence maintains the quality of the evidence and can help ensure that the original evidence stays intact on the original system so it can later be retrieved by other parties.  This is why it is extremely important that […] Primeau Forensics 12:13
8: How to Give an Expert Deposition https://www.primeauforensics.com/8-how-to-give-an-expert-deposition/ Thu, 30 Oct 2014 15:14:19 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=372 https://www.primeauforensics.com/8-how-to-give-an-expert-deposition/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/8-how-to-give-an-expert-deposition/feed/ 0 <p>An Expert Deposition is one of the most important activities performed by forensic experts, second only to the final testimony.  A deposition is the process where the opposing lawyers question the forensic expert, under oath, about what they are going to testify during trial.  These questions are designed for the opposing lawyer to gain information […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/8-how-to-give-an-expert-deposition/">8: How to Give an Expert Deposition</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 8: How to Give an Expert DepositionAn Expert Deposition is one of the most important activities performed by forensic experts, second only to the final testimony.  A deposition is the process where the opposing lawyers question the forensic expert, under oath, about what they are going to testify during trial.  These questions are designed for the opposing lawyer to gain information about the investigation that the forensic expert performed, to learn what the expert would testify about in court.

Just like testifying in court, it is very important for the forensic expert to prepare beforehand for the deposition.  Carefully sifting through his or her investigation with a fine tooth comb, and reviewing all investigative notes can make a large difference on their success when being deposed.  The forensic expert should also work with their client lawyer directly to learn what information the opposing lawyer will be most interested in and how to properly express their answers.

Ten Tips for Giving a Good Deposition

  1. The forensic expert should dress professionally.  I always wear a suit and tie when being deposed.
  2. The expert should only answer the questions that are asked.  They should avoid elaborating too much on their answers in order to avoid giving away too much information.
  3. The forensic expert should always prepare with their client lawyer.  The lawyer will always know more about the case and what information should be shared.
  4. The expert should be aware of anyone attending the deposition remotely and make sure to make eye contact with him or her through the camera being used in the system.
  5. The forensic expert should speak clearly so the court reporter can accurately type everything they say during the deposition.  Sitting close to the court reporter if possible can greatly help.
  6. The expert should always obtain a copy of the transcript to make sure all of the information is accurate.
  7. The expert should arrive early to the deposition.  They may not know the location well and allowing extra time can save the expert from being late.
  8. The expert should bring a current copy of their curriculum vitae to make sure that it is presented as part of the deposition.
  9. The expert should have all of their notes ready in front of them as well as their forensic report.  Any evidence that needs to be presented should be ready as well.  If evidence needs to be presented from a computer, the expert should make sure that it is working properly beforehand.
  10. Finally, the forensic expert should practice their deposition.  Even beyond rehearsing with their client lawyer, the expert should go through all of their notes and reports prior to being deposed.  They should spend time the night before double-checking all of their information to ensure they are ready for the deposition.  More often than not, this can make a difference in the deposition.

Listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses how to properly prepare for and give a good deposition.

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An Expert Deposition is one of the most important activities performed by forensic experts, second only to the final testimony.  A deposition is the process where the opposing lawyers question the forensic expert, under oath, An Expert Deposition is one of the most important activities performed by forensic experts, second only to the final testimony.  A deposition is the process where the opposing lawyers question the forensic expert, under oath, about what they are going to testify during trial.  These questions are designed for the opposing lawyer to gain information […] Primeau Forensics 11:06
7: Importance of the Chain of Custody for Digital Media Evidence https://www.primeauforensics.com/7-importance-of-the-chain-of-custody-for-digital-media-evidence/ Mon, 27 Oct 2014 19:50:38 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=365 https://www.primeauforensics.com/7-importance-of-the-chain-of-custody-for-digital-media-evidence/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/7-importance-of-the-chain-of-custody-for-digital-media-evidence/feed/ 0 <p>Establishing chain of custody when authenticating digital media evidence for use in the courtroom is extremely important. The chain of custody must account for the seizure, storage, transfer and condition of the evidence.  The chain of custody is absolutely necessary for admissible evidence in court. Importance to the expert My forensic software allows me to look […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/7-importance-of-the-chain-of-custody-for-digital-media-evidence/">7: Importance of the Chain of Custody for Digital Media Evidence</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 7: Importance of the Chain of Custody for Digital Media EvidenceEstablishing chain of custody when authenticating digital media evidence for use in the courtroom is extremely important. The chain of custody must account for the seizure, storage, transfer and condition of the evidence.  The chain of custody is absolutely necessary for admissible evidence in court.

Importance to the expert

My forensic software allows me to look at the metadata or digital information of an audio or video recording, but does not always allow me to understand how a recording was created.  Just because the information is missing from the metadata does not mean that a recording has been compromised.  This is why the chain of custody information is important to a forensic examiner. It helps show where the file came from, who created it, and the type of equipment that was used.  That way, if I want to create an exemplar, I can get that equipment, create the exemplar and compare it to the evidence to confirm the file properties.

Importance to the court

When I testify in court with a piece of evidence, I am always prepared with the chain of custody.  As I mentioned earlier, without a complete chain of custody, it can become very easy for the opposing attorney or prosecutor to challenge or dismiss the evidence presented.  Having a complete chain of custody form, as well as any other accompanying forms and including any visual proof of retrieval, such as pictures or video, greatly helps prove the authenticity and admissibility of the evidence in the courtroom.

Recently, new ways of establishing a chain of custody have come about and are slowly becoming accepted in the legal community.  Online services are now available for digital evidence that record the chain of custody and who has received the evidence.  The evidence is stored in cloud space and eliminates the need for repeated transference of physical copies.  It maintains standardized security procedures and is also useful as a backup storage space for surveillance cameras.

Chain of custody is important to the court because if I find something wrong with the evidence during the authentication process, it allows me to go back and determine who was responsible for the evidence up until that point. 

Importance to the investigation

The chain of custody is important to the investigation process because it is the first step when authenticating digital audio and video evidence.  Identifying this chain of custody provides information about whether or not this evidence has been copied or cloned.  As technology advances and becomes more accessible, digital media evidence has become easier to edit, modify and alter.  The Scientific Working Group on Digital Evidence (SWGDE & IOCE) defines Original Digital Evidence as, “Physical items and the data objects associated with such items at the time of acquisition or seizure.”  It is not always possible to receive the evidence from its original source at the time of acquisition or seizure.  Very often, I receive digital media evidence from a client who may have received it from the police or another source.  When this occurs, I have to pay careful attention to the reports, depositions and other legal documents that accompany the evidence.  This paper trail must be part of an unbroken timeline that shows exactly where the evidence has been between its creation and my examination of it.  When I encounter any gaps in this timeline that can raise questions to the authenticity of the evidence, further investigation becomes necessary.

There are occasions when I am asked by the client to physically retrieve the evidence directly from the recorder that created it.  This process creates the chain of custody for my investigation.  When an expert creates the chain of custody, it removes all doubt as to the authenticity of the evidence.   This process has become more common throughout my investigations when the original evidence is available for my retrieval.  To further authenticate this process, I create audio and video recordings of the retrieval process, which becomes part of the chain of custody. In addition, when I am at the site and I retrieve the digital evidence, I have access to the administrator information about that evidence, such as an administrative log, date and file info, and who accessed the files.  The more information an expert can retrieve strengthens the authentic chain of custody that is created.

Primeau Forensics’ chain of custody process

  • Save original package materials
  • Take photos of physical evidence
  • Take screenshots of digital evidence content
  • Document date, time and any other information of receipt
  • Ingest a bit for bit clone of digital evidence content into our forensic computers
  • Perform a hash test analysis to further authenticate working clone

All of the above information outlined in our forensic procedure for creating a chain of custody is important and necessary to include when creating a forensic report.

When examining digital media evidence, especially digital audio and video recordings, you should never examine the original file.  Always make sure that when you process a piece of evidence, you work on the copy of that file so that the original remains untouched at all times.  That way, if you have to go back to compare your work product to the original, you’ll have that original file preserved.

It doesn’t matter what forensic science you are an expert in.  The chain of custody is always important.  Maintaining that chain of custody is crucial for the credibility of your work product and eventual testimony.

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Establishing chain of custody when authenticating digital media evidence for use in the courtroom is extremely important. The chain of custody must account for the seizure, storage, transfer and condition of the evidence. Establishing chain of custody when authenticating digital media evidence for use in the courtroom is extremely important. The chain of custody must account for the seizure, storage, transfer and condition of the evidence.  The chain of custody is absolutely necessary for admissible evidence in court. Importance to the expert My forensic software allows me to look […] Primeau Forensics 8:59
6: Continuing Education as a Forensic Expert https://www.primeauforensics.com/6-continuing-education-as-a-forensic-expert/ Thu, 09 Oct 2014 18:05:26 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=355 https://www.primeauforensics.com/6-continuing-education-as-a-forensic-expert/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/6-continuing-education-as-a-forensic-expert/feed/ 0 <p>As a forensic expert, continuing your education in your field of expertise is extremely important in remaining a credible forensic expert.  I practice audio and video forensic work and at the rate that technology is evolving, it’s important for me to stay up to date on all of the latest advancements in the field. This is […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/6-continuing-education-as-a-forensic-expert/">6: Continuing Education as a Forensic Expert</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 6: Continuing Education as a Forensic ExpertAs a forensic expert, continuing your education in your field of expertise is extremely important in remaining a credible forensic expert.  I practice audio and video forensic work and at the rate that technology is evolving, it’s important for me to stay up to date on all of the latest advancements in the field. This is not exclusive to digital media forensics.  New developments are made in all areas of expertise.  Being an expert witness requires you to have current and accurate knowledge in your field of expertise.

When an expert witness is first called to the stand in a courtroom, their client lawyer will begin with the direct examination.  During this, the lawyer will ask questions that establish the expert witness’s qualifications and credentials.  After the direct examination, the opposing prosecutor or attorney will question the witness and challenge them as an expert witness.  The more experience and credentials you have in your field, the harder it becomes for the opposing attorney to disqualify you as an expert witness. Certifications and diplomas are documented proof of your relevance and credibility as an expert in your field.

Get involved in organizations related to your field.

I am a member of the American College of Forensic Examiners Institute and am on the advisory board of Recorded Evidence.  We help determine the qualifications for Audio Forensic Experts and are currently updating the test to become certified.  It is extremely important be forward thinking when managing your career as a forensic expert.  Its not enough to be status quo when you are a forensic expert. You have to have the most accurate and up to date knowledge and be able to apply that knowledge to remain a credible forensic expert.

Now listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses the importance of continuing your education in your field as a forensic expert.

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As a forensic expert, continuing your education in your field of expertise is extremely important in remaining a credible forensic expert.  I practice audio and video forensic work and at the rate that technology is evolving, As a forensic expert, continuing your education in your field of expertise is extremely important in remaining a credible forensic expert.  I practice audio and video forensic work and at the rate that technology is evolving, it’s important for me to stay up to date on all of the latest advancements in the field. This is […] Primeau Forensics 8:58
5: How to Perform a Voice Identification https://www.primeauforensics.com/5-how-to-perform-a-voice-identification/ Mon, 29 Sep 2014 18:11:13 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=347 https://www.primeauforensics.com/5-how-to-perform-a-voice-identification/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/5-how-to-perform-a-voice-identification/feed/ 0 <p>Voice Identification (also known as Speaker Recognition) plays a very important part in the forensic world.  I practice voice identification regularly as an Audio Forensic Expert and I believe it is a viable and often crucial science when working on a forensic assignment.  I chose this topic for this podcast because I just released my […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/5-how-to-perform-a-voice-identification/">5: How to Perform a Voice Identification</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 5: How to Perform a Voice IdentificationVoice Identification (also known as Speaker Recognition) plays a very important part in the forensic world.  I practice voice identification regularly as an Audio Forensic Expert and I believe it is a viable and often crucial science when working on a forensic assignment.  I chose this topic for this podcast because I just released my new book “That’s Not My Voice!: A Practical Understanding of the Art and Science of Modern Voice Identification.”  In my book, I cover the basics of human hearing and my approach to voice identification.

How do you perform a voice identification?

The process of voice identification is done through multiple steps.  The first step is critical listening.  When you first receive a recording from a client, its important to listen through the recording in its entirety and take detailed notes on what you hear.  In order to continue with the voice identification process, an exemplar is needed as a comparison to the recording in question.  Exemplars are supervised recordings of predetermined spoken word samples strictly made for voice identification comparison.  Electronic measurement has become possible with audio software that include spectrum graphs.  This allows you gather notes on specific information on the frequency ranges of the two recordings.  Visual inspection of the waveform should be done next.  During this step, you will analyze and compare the waveform of each recording.  Words will have different lengths and varying levels for different syllables in the words.

Emergency Voice Identifications are cases where creating an exemplar of the voice in question is not an option.  This is typically when a threat has been called in to a company and they believe they know who called in the threat.  In these cases, I must use any possible recording of the accused person such as a recorded voice mail or outgoing voice message.  These are difficult cases but it is very important that the company stay in control of the situation before approaching the suspected person.

Now listen in with Ed Primeau as he discusses the Voice Identification and the steps that must be taken to accurately and effectively perform the process.

For more on Voice Identification, check out Ed Primeau’s latest book, “That’s Not My Voice!” available on Amazon.

The post 5: How to Perform a Voice Identification appeared first on Primeau Forensics.

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Voice Identification (also known as Speaker Recognition) plays a very important part in the forensic world.  I practice voice identification regularly as an Audio Forensic Expert and I believe it is a viable and often crucial science when working on a ... Voice Identification (also known as Speaker Recognition) plays a very important part in the forensic world.  I practice voice identification regularly as an Audio Forensic Expert and I believe it is a viable and often crucial science when working on a forensic assignment.  I chose this topic for this podcast because I just released my […] Primeau Forensics 12:14
4: Forensic Science – How to Prepare to be an Expert Witness https://www.primeauforensics.com/4-forensic-science-how-to-prepare-to-be-an-expert-witness/ Tue, 16 Sep 2014 18:24:29 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=338 https://www.primeauforensics.com/4-forensic-science-how-to-prepare-to-be-an-expert-witness/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/4-forensic-science-how-to-prepare-to-be-an-expert-witness/feed/ 0 <p>Becoming an expert witness is a challenging step for a forensic expert. In an earlier post we talked about putting together your CV and its importance in building your credibility as a forensic expert. Now, we will go over the how to prepare yourself and your team for trial and what to expect when testifying in […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/4-forensic-science-how-to-prepare-to-be-an-expert-witness/">4: Forensic Science – How to Prepare to be an Expert Witness</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 4: Forensic Science - How to Prepare to be an Expert WitnessBecoming an expert witness is a challenging step for a forensic expert. In an earlier post we talked about putting together your CV and its importance in building your credibility as a forensic expert. Now, we will go over the how to prepare yourself and your team for trial and what to expect when testifying in the courtroom.  Not all forensic experts decide to become expert witnesses and appear in court.  There are many qualified experts who choose to avoid the stress of testifying and focus on the outside forensic work that they specialize in.  Testifying in court is challenging and requires a lot of preparation to withstand the pressure of the courtroom.

Personally, I have found that there are two aspects to my career as a forensic expert.  The first is my forensic talent, which I make sure to continuously improve by furthering my education in the field every year.  The second is testifying.  This skill almost outweighs an expert’s laboratory experience.  This requires you to not only know your field of expertise but also know how to act in the courtroom.  I have worked on and testified in dozens of forensic assignments and court cases, which has helped build my reputation and credibility as an expert witness.

In this episode, we’ll go over the importance of completing forensic assignments and testifying, the courtroom experience, what it means to be under oath, preparation for the trial, how to dress and act when testifying, how to best answer questions while on the stand, the direct examination and the cross examination.

Now, listen in with Audio and Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he discusses what to expect when becoming an expert witness and testifying in court.

The post 4: Forensic Science – How to Prepare to be an Expert Witness appeared first on Primeau Forensics.

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Becoming an expert witness is a challenging step for a forensic expert. In an earlier post we talked about putting together your CV and its importance in building your credibility as a forensic expert. Now, Becoming an expert witness is a challenging step for a forensic expert. In an earlier post we talked about putting together your CV and its importance in building your credibility as a forensic expert. Now, we will go over the how to prepare yourself and your team for trial and what to expect when testifying in […] Primeau Forensics 14:38
3: Forensic Science – Writing Your Forensic Report https://www.primeauforensics.com/3-forensic-science-writing-your-forensic-report/ Fri, 05 Sep 2014 19:53:40 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=327 https://www.primeauforensics.com/3-forensic-science-writing-your-forensic-report/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/3-forensic-science-writing-your-forensic-report/feed/ 0 <p>The forensic report is a forensic experts full report of their work on a case for court.  It includes everything the forensic expert did while examining the evidence along with their findings throughout the investigation.  In this post, we will briefly talk with Chicago trial attorney Shawn Warner about the importance of the forensic report and […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/3-forensic-science-writing-your-forensic-report/">3: Forensic Science – Writing Your Forensic Report</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 3: Forensic Science - Writing Your Forensic ReportThe forensic report is a forensic experts full report of their work on a case for court.  It includes everything the forensic expert did while examining the evidence along with their findings throughout the investigation.  In this post, we will briefly talk with Chicago trial attorney Shawn Warner about the importance of the forensic report and what makes a great forensic report. The examples I will use today are about combining forensic sciences and forensic clues to help develop and process a case for trial.

Analyzing all information and determining what process to use are typical for most forensic investigations.  Building the forensic report is key in preparing for trial.  The forensic report contains all of the work that was put into your investigation and covers all of the facts for the case.  This ensures that nothing is left out of an expert witness’s deposition or testimony.

I use audio and video forensics in combination quite often. The publicized shooting of a firefighter on his wedding night by an off duty Kansas City Police Officer is an example where I combined forensic sciences in order to bring out the facts of the shooting. I was given a cell phone video recorded by a witness.  The video included much of the confrontation but not the entire confrontation.  I could hear the dialogue between the two men in the cell phone audio. One of the first things I did after I loaded this cell phone video into Adobe Premiere Pro CS 6 was develop and process the audio portion of the video to better hear the words spoken. Next I loaded a second video I was given which was from a nearby CCTV camera across the street in a parking garage.  Then I synced the two videos together so the viewer could see and hear all the events as they occurred in both recordings.

In this weeks podcast, listen in with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he talks about the importance of a forensic report and its importance in a case.

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The forensic report is a forensic experts full report of their work on a case for court.  It includes everything the forensic expert did while examining the evidence along with their findings throughout the investigation.  In this post, The forensic report is a forensic experts full report of their work on a case for court.  It includes everything the forensic expert did while examining the evidence along with their findings throughout the investigation.  In this post, we will briefly talk with Chicago trial attorney Shawn Warner about the importance of the forensic report and […] Primeau Forensics 8:05
2: Forensic Science – How Attorneys Select Forensic Experts https://www.primeauforensics.com/2-forensic-science-how-attorneys-select-forensic-experts/ Fri, 29 Aug 2014 20:42:00 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=322 https://www.primeauforensics.com/2-forensic-science-how-attorneys-select-forensic-experts/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/2-forensic-science-how-attorneys-select-forensic-experts/feed/ 0 <p>Shawn Warner is a 25 year veteran Chicago trial lawyer. In this post, we are going to discuss the role of the forensic expert. Why hire forensic experts? What do lawyers look for when hiring forensic experts? Shawn Warner is licensed in Illinois but also works on cases across the United States.  He has worked on […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/2-forensic-science-how-attorneys-select-forensic-experts/">2: Forensic Science – How Attorneys Select Forensic Experts</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 2: Forensic Science - How Attorneys Select Forensic ExpertsShawn Warner is a 25 year veteran Chicago trial lawyer. In this post, we are going to discuss the role of the forensic expert. Why hire forensic experts? What do lawyers look for when hiring forensic experts?

Shawn Warner is licensed in Illinois but also works on cases across the United States.  He has worked on many medical malpractice cases, personal injury cases and business litigation.  He frequently employs expert witnesses to testify in court.  Shawn has gathered knowledge on what qualifies an expert witness to testify in court, what juries expect and accept in expert witnesses, and helpful tips on how expert witnesses should approach their testimony in court.  Many of his previous cases have proved how invaluable a forensic expert can be when helping the jury understand and reach a verdict on the case. Forensic experts help explain complicated issues brought into the court room so that the jury can understand the case and reach a decision.  They must have real world experience as well as a strong education to prove that they are an expert in their field.

In this weeks podcast, listen in with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau and Chicago Trial Lawyer Shawn Warner as they discuss the qualifications and importance of Forensic Expert Witnesses in court.

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Shawn Warner is a 25 year veteran Chicago trial lawyer. In this post, we are going to discuss the role of the forensic expert. Why hire forensic experts? What do lawyers look for when hiring forensic experts? Shawn Warner is a 25 year veteran Chicago trial lawyer. In this post, we are going to discuss the role of the forensic expert. Why hire forensic experts? What do lawyers look for when hiring forensic experts? Shawn Warner is licensed in Illinois but also works on cases across the United States.  He has worked on […] Primeau Forensics 9:44
1: Forensic Science – How to Build Your Expert Witness Curriculum Vitae (C/V) https://www.primeauforensics.com/1-how-to-build-your-expert-witness-curriculum-vitae-cv/ Fri, 29 Aug 2014 19:40:28 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=317 https://www.primeauforensics.com/1-how-to-build-your-expert-witness-curriculum-vitae-cv/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/1-how-to-build-your-expert-witness-curriculum-vitae-cv/feed/ 0 <p>My name is Ed Primeau and I am an audio video forensic expert. I develop or process audio and video evidence to better hear and see the events as they occurred in the audio or video recording. I also authenticate audio and video evidence to learn if the evidence presented is real and can be […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/1-how-to-build-your-expert-witness-curriculum-vitae-cv/">1: Forensic Science – How to Build Your Expert Witness Curriculum Vitae (C/V)</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p> 1: Forensic Science - How to Build Your Expert Witness Curriculum Vitae (C/V)My name is Ed Primeau and I am an audio video forensic expert. I develop or process audio and video evidence to better hear and see the events as they occurred in the audio or video recording. I also authenticate audio and video evidence to learn if the evidence presented is real and can be used in court. In the following article I will share my thoughts on how to honor forensic science and build your expert witness curriculum vitae.

In this first episode of ‘Blindspot’, I want to cover an overview of the qualifications of a forensic expert. If you are thinking of a career as a forensic expert, you better begin with a solid foundation in your area of expertise. This is on the job experience, activity both behind a desk and in the field. Your forensic career will grow as your work experience grows. To document this experience, as forensic experts we create what is referred to as a curriculum vitae which is a Latin word meaning ‘the course of life’ in other words, things that have happened in your life. A C/V is a document that lists your education, work experience, articles published and reviewed by your peers as well as continuing education and associates you belong to. Eventually your C/V will also list the legal cases you have word on and successfully completed.

So where do you begin with creating your C/V?

As a forensic expert, your C/V is the most important and most used document you will ever have as a forensic expert. This is the document that will allow everyone who reads it an understanding of your education and experience as well as life accomplishments as a forensic expert. The reader will know your experience and how it relates to the work you are doing or have already completed. Your C/V is also very important when qualifying you testify in court. Your C/V is also an integrity foundation. Forensic experts must have integrity.

In this weeks podcast, listen in with Audio & Video Forensic Expert Ed Primeau as he talks about the importance of a C/V and it’s role in your professional career as a forensic expert.

The post 1: Forensic Science – How to Build Your Expert Witness Curriculum Vitae (C/V) appeared first on Primeau Forensics.

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My name is Ed Primeau and I am an audio video forensic expert. I develop or process audio and video evidence to better hear and see the events as they occurred in the audio or video recording. I also authenticate audio and video evidence to learn if th... My name is Ed Primeau and I am an audio video forensic expert. I develop or process audio and video evidence to better hear and see the events as they occurred in the audio or video recording. I also authenticate audio and video evidence to learn if the evidence presented is real and can be […] Primeau Forensics 11:50
The Forensic Expert Witness: 3 Tips For Preparing to Testify https://www.primeauforensics.com/the-forensic-expert-witness-3-tips-for-preparing-to-testify/ Fri, 28 Feb 2014 17:11:40 +0000 http://www.primeauforensics.com/?p=298 https://www.primeauforensics.com/the-forensic-expert-witness-3-tips-for-preparing-to-testify/#respond https://www.primeauforensics.com/the-forensic-expert-witness-3-tips-for-preparing-to-testify/feed/ 0 <p>It is very important that the forensic expert witness must prepare to testify. Proficiency in their field is certainly a prerequisite for all who testify in court as an expert witness. However, preparing to Testify is a process. I will share three tips on how to maximize preparing to testify with you below. With the […]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com/the-forensic-expert-witness-3-tips-for-preparing-to-testify/">The Forensic Expert Witness: 3 Tips For Preparing to Testify</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.primeauforensics.com">Primeau Forensics</a>.</p>

It is very important that the forensic expert witness must prepare to testify. Proficiency in their field is certainly a prerequisite for all who testify in court as an expert witness. However, preparing to Testify is a process. I will share three tips on how to maximize preparing to testify with you below.

With the benefit of my 35 years experience, I believe that a good expert witness must also qualify as an expert in communicating clearly and persuasively on the witness stand. In short, expertise in testifying is just as important as expertise in a particular field of knowledge. Here, then, are 4 tips for expert witnesses and the attorneys they work with.

Tip #1

Make sure that the judge and jury are fully convinced that you are, without any doubt, a true expert in your field. Proving your status as a recognized, fully qualified expert is the foundation upon which all your testimony rests. The more impressive your credentials, the greater the weight given to your testimony. For that reason, I always have several copies of my CV available for review by opposing counsel, judge, and jurors, as well as a copy that is entered into evidence.Always supply the attorneys on your side with a clear outline of facts designed to help establish your credibility as an expert witness. You can even provide them with a list of suggested questions that will help substantiate your qualifications in a succinct, logical manner. It has been my experience that if I do not earn the respect and trust of the jury before presenting the facts, then my testimony will fall on deaf ears. Similarly, make a list or an outline of the order and substance of the points you plan to make, and provide it to the attorneys who have engaged you as an expert witness. There is no one more qualified than you to suggest a line of questioning to follow during your direct examination. You have a broad overview of the beginning, middle, and end of your investigation, the story of what you found and how you found it. By their very nature, people are constantly attempting to make sense of their experience. Psychologists have found that one of the ways they do this is by creating narratives, forging links between the facts of their experience and creating causal chains. If the story you present is a good one, if it is clear and compelling, then the jury will remember it and give it the credence it deserves. Especially in cases where there are many facts to bring out, a detailed outline serves as a road map for the attorney to follow. Under the pressure of appearing in court, it is surprisingly easy to overlook important facts that must be highlighted during your testimony.

Tip #2

Sitting alone, I always rehearse aloud what I want to say when I testify. This helps me remember the order in which I want to present my findings. More importantly, it allows me to practice explaining, in simple language, the results of my investigation. My goal is to present, explain, and illustrate my findings so that the average 12-year old can understand me. Juries are easily bored by technical jargon and obscure scientific concepts. I strive to be clear and concise, and to allow the natural enthusiasm I have for my area of expertise to show through. People love to learn about new things(though this flame is often extinguished by the time they graduate from high school).One of my favorite film directors, Stanley Kubrick, once said, “To be boring is the worst sin of all.” Our world is alive with facts and ideas, emotions and events. Life is inherently interesting. Appearing as an expert witness should not give someone license to put the jury to sleep.

Tip #3

Extremely valuable is conducting a mock trial. I recently testified as a video forensics expert in one of the most complex cases of my career. We spent two days on a mock trial, with one lawyer doing direct and another cross. Over time, I was able to answer every question clearly and without hesitation, even those questions that challenged my findings and expertise. By the second day, we had arrived at a list of all the questions the prosecutor would be most likely to ask during cross-examination. At trial, the prosecution had only two questions for me, because we had already answered most of his questions on direct examination. Anticipating and pre-empting questions from the opposition is a highly effective legal strategy. Because it was complete and candid, my testimony was largely immune to challenge from the prosecution. A trial consists of many large and small battles, which determine the outcome of the war, the verdict. In that sense, my testimony was an overwhelming victory for our side.

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It is very important that the forensic expert witness must prepare to testify. Proficiency in their field is certainly a prerequisite for all who testify in court as an expert witness. However, preparing to Testify is a process. It is very important that the forensic expert witness must prepare to testify. Proficiency in their field is certainly a prerequisite for all who testify in court as an expert witness. However, preparing to Testify is a process. I will share three tips on how to maximize preparing to testify with you below. With the […] Primeau Forensics 2:24 yes