Forensic Materials Analysis

Trace evidence analysis can make or break a legal case. Good news: our technical experts are equally skilled in the lab and the courtroom.

The presence of trace evidence at crime scenes can provide valuable information for investigations including murders, assaults, robberies, hit and runs, and other types of unlawful activity. It's important to understand the value of these types of evidence analyses to provide investigational leads, establish associations, and reinforce findings from other types of evidence. And sometimes you only get one shot to run an experiment.

Gateway Analytical offers trace evidence analysis by forensic experts on hairs, fibers, paint, and general unknowns. Our technical experts are also court qualified experts and can offer onsite or remote testimony for deposition or trial.

More specifically, we offer the follow forensic testing services:

  • Hair Examination: Hair is a common form of trace evidence that can be found at crime scenes and on victims and/or suspects. We use microscopy to analyze hair evidence, determine species and body origin, note optical characteristics, and compare questioned samples to known exemplars. We can also assess if DNA analysis would be an appropriate follow-up test (please note that we do not perform DNA analysis in-house).
     
  • General Physical and Chemical Analysis: Gateway Analytical scientists are experts in the identification of unknown material. We utilize a multi-tiered approach to analyzing materials. Our comprehensive identification process includes the use of microscopy, FTIR, Raman, SEM-EDS, and specialized sample preparation techniques.
     
  • Fiber: Fibers are ubiquitous to the environment and therefore are commonly found during evidence collection during criminal investigations. Gateway Analytical uses microscopy, FTIR, and Raman to identify fibers. It should be noted that fiber analysis is performed only under our ISO accreditations.
     
  • Paint: Paint evidence is most commonly found during hit and run cases, automobile accidents, and burglaries. Gateway Analytical has experience in examining automotive and architectural paints using microscopy, FTIR, Raman, SEM-EDS, and specialized sample preparation techniques. It should be noted that paint analysis is performed only under our ISO accreditations.

Want to learn more? Make an inquiry and tell us how Gateway Analytical can support your forensic analysis project.