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Unless you live in a cave, you are aware that the grand jury reached a decision in the shooting of Michael Brown. The jury’s decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson has resulted in high emotions and heated debate over the state of racial affairs and justice in the US. Clearly this is a tragic event, regardless of your own views on the underlying racial and justice issues. Yet, as scientists, it is our role to stay clear of the emotional fray and attempt to seek and illustrate the truth when possible.

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Directly after the CAC and CACLD conferences in Sonoma, I was off to beautiful South Lake Tahoe to attend the California Association of Accident Reconstruction Specialists, (CA2RS) 2014 Annual Conference – www.ca2rs.com. This group is very active in its training programs and runs two concurrent schedules – one for Northern California and one for Southern California.

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Right on the heels of my return from Korea, I was off to Sonoma County where I attended the joint meetings of the California Association of Criminalists (CAC) and the California Association of Crime Lab Directors (CACLD). These two groups are focused on the technology and valid practices for forensic investigation. Everything from DNA and blood splatter analysis to crime scene investigation and accident reconstruction is covered at the conferences by the foremost practitioners invited to present papers.

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The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of conferences and speaking engagements, First, was the amazing World Forensic Festival in Seoul, Korea. Jetlag was brutal, but I am very excited by what I experienced! As a forensic scientist or consultant, if you ever have an opportunity to participate in an international meeting, I highly suggest you do whatever it takes to attend.

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