Programme 2015

We’ve been working hard on this year’s programme to ensure the same quality we have brought you previously is also apparent in this year’s programme. A draft programme for this year’s conference is now available. Please note this is still in draft format and that some panels and panelists are still to be confirmed.

Saturday 10th October

Time  Exhibition Space  Common Room
09.00 – 09.30 Science stream: Introduction
(including overview of analytical chemistry)
True Crime: The Shirley Finn Murder
– David Whish-Wilson

09.30 – 10.00 Science Stream: Illicit Drugs
10.00 – 10.30 Science Stream: Clandestine Labs Maintaining Innocence
 – Jane Tudor-Owen
10.30 – 11.00 Mid-morning Break
11.00 – 11.30 Science Stream: Arson and Explosions Plot and Structure of Crime Fiction
– Dr Stephen Dedman
11.30 – 12.00 Science Stream: Trace Evidence
12:00 – 13:30 Lunch
1.30 – 2.30 Writing the Nitty Gritty – Felicity Young
2.30 – 3.30 Document Examination – John McGinn, Document Examination Solutions
3.30 – 4.30 Writing About What You Know -Paul Hardisty, Mick Barnes, Neryl Joyce
4.30 – 5.30 Accused and Convicted: How Not to Be a Forensic Toxicologist – Associate Professor Bob Mead
5.30 – 6.30 Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue – Facilitated by Dr Stephen Dedman
6.30 – 7.30 ANZFSS Sponsored Sundowner


Science stream: Forensic Chemistry
Prof Simon Lewis et al
Professor Lewis, with the assistance of other practitioners, will present how different aspects of Forensic Chemistry assist with processing the crime scene and how the science/evidence is used in the court of law.

True Crime: The Shirley Finn Murder
David Whish-Wilson
David talks about the Shirley Finn Murder – the research he did and how he then took this information and fictionalised it – what constraints there were, how much fact can you use, and how hard is it to write fiction when people involved in the story are still around.

Maintaining Innocence
Jane Tudor-Owen
Wrongful convictions have gained increasing attention since the inception of the first innocence projects in the United States in the early 1990s. To date, there have been over 300 exonerations in the US alone. This presentation will discuss the innocence movement in Australia, detailing the unique legal environment for Australian prisoners seeking exoneration. The presentation will also explore some key factors in causing wrongful convictions and how increased awareness of wrongful conviction and the work of innocence projects has influenced practices in the criminal justice system in an attempt to reduce the incidence of these miscarriages of justice.

Plot and Structure of Crime Fiction
Dr Stephen Dedman
Dr Dedman presents a panel on the plot and structure of writing crime fiction.

Writing the Nitty Gritty
Felicity Young
This panel will discuss writing about the crimes people are not often familiar with, the research that goes into this and how the story is crafted.

Document Examination – Document Examination Solutions
John McGinn – Document Examination Solutions
Our experts conduct forensic document examinations, including signature and handwriting analysis, gathering evidence to determine whether documents and the information they contain are genuine, fraudulent or counterfeit. John talks about his field of work and introduces us to the fqascinating world of document examination.

Writing About What You Know
Paul Hardisty, Mick Barnes, Neryl Joyce
Paul brings his experience and expertise from working at CSIRO into his debut novel “The Abrupt Physics of Dying”. Mick writes about his experiences with his military training, weapons expertise and his security work. Mercenary Mum is the true story of a young single mother who went from working at her local Woolworths store to serving as a soldier in the Australian Army’s elite Close Personal Protection Unit. The three talk about how their experiences have shaped their writing.

Accused and Convicted: How Not to Be a Forensic Toxicologist
Ass. Prof. Bob Mead
Objectivity in scientific investigation can be compromised by a tendency to interpret data in a manner consistent with expectations or prior theories. These “expectation effects” are most evident when the investigator is motivated to deliver a particular result, or when the data being evaluated is ambiguous and open to a variety of interpretations. In such circumstances an analyst may resolve equivocal data so as to align it with expectations, even to the extent of disregarding analytical inadequacies and inconsistencies, thereby undermining the validity of the conclusions. Expectation and observer effects are of particular concern in forensic investigation where analysts may form part of an investigative team, and as a consequence, may identify with prosecutorial goals. The prosecution and subsequent conviction of Patricia Stallings in 1991 for the murder of her infant son by allegedly administering radiator antifreeze to him from his baby’s bottle, is presented as an illustrative case.

Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue
Facilitated by Dr Stephen Dedman, Jay Watson
Discussing all things crime – from new books and shows; to the old books/shows we go back to, time and time again; to the tropes which borrow from each other such as Elementary and Sherlock; and all the police procedural shows.