Forensic Animation


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A computer-generated animation based on the forensic evidence presented by scene investigators and law enforcement officers, which may be shown in a court case
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They observed that when the plaintiff and defense used a forensic animation to depict their own partisan theories, participants increasingly made judgments that contradicted the physical evidence, suggesting that computer-animated displays have greater impact than oral testimony.
One of the first major uses of forensic animation took place in the federal civil case for the Delta flight 191 crash.
This particular case involved the death of an off-duty motorcycle policeman and was one of the first times that a forensic animation was admitted in a UK courtroom.
One can see obvious benefits to the use of such forensic animation evidence, particularly as it is arguably less emotive and prejudicial than members of the general public being exposed to, often gruesome, post-mortem photographic evidence (March et al, 2004).
In this particular case the advice of the pathologist was seen as crucial in creating a forensic animation which accurately matched the medical opinion (8).
Although in the UK they are possibly the only forensic animation experts in a field of one, over in North America the technique is looked upon as a legal essential.
While forensic animation is often portrayed as a "silver bullet" that can turn every difficult-to-try case into an easy win, empirical research into its effectiveness with juries has yielded mixed results.
Forensic animation can often be used effectively if it is incorporated into your trial strategy.
As forensic animation gains acceptance in courtrooms throughout the nation, a general consensus on its appropriate use as demonstrative evidence is emerging.
In Clark, the court reviewed whether it was appropriate for a trial judge to refuse to admit the defendant's forensic animation of a drag-racing accident.
Noting that opposing counsel should have the opportunity to challenge the admission of a forensic animation and to cross-examine the experts who prepared it, the Clark court said trial judges should consider whether the proponent disclosed the animation and underlying data within a reasonable period of time before trial (it cited one commentator's suggestion that disclosure occur at least two weeks before trial).
So,for the first time in the history of the force, investigating officer Det Supt Julieanne Wallace-Jones turned to forensic animation.
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