Human Remains Analysis
Human remains analysis is one of Dr. Snow's major roles as a forensic anthropologist. He is an expert in the analysis of the biological profile of decomposed, mummified, burned, skeletonized, incomplete, commingled, and fragmentary remains. Dr. Snow can quickly determine whether bones are human and whether they are forensically significant, which can save law enforcement many hours at the scene. Without a forensic anthropologist present, often much time is spent by local police examining remains only to learn later that the bones were from an animal or that they were historic in nature.
If the remains are found to be human and forensically significant, Dr. Snow then determines the biological profile, which includes the sex, ancestry, age at death, and physical stature of the individual. The biological profile of the deceased is then disseminated to law enforcement agencies for comparison to missing persons. Dr. Snow has found that many human remains are unidentified because of an inaccurate assessment of sex, ancestry, or age.
In addition, Dr. Snow is often called on to estimate time since death, as well as trauma, including gunshot wounds, sharp force trauma, blunt force trauma, and reconstruction of fragmentary remains . He uses a variety of methods to identify the remains, including individualizing characteristics, radiographic comparisons, and DNA sampling. His human remains analysis experience includes the recovery and identification in widely publicized cases including the mass graves in Kosovo, Bosnia, and the Tri-State Crematorium.