Animals That Can Reveal Criminal Cases – If you hear about animals that can solve criminal cases, surely the type of animal that comes to your mind is dogs, but you need to know other animals that can solve criminal cases.
Do you know, that certain types of animals or insects are often referred to as ‘first witnesses’ in crime cases? The establishment of the Veterinary Genetic Laboratory at the University of California proves that animal DNA can connect victims or crime scenes with suspects, you know.
Saliva, urine, blood, feces, hair, or the unique abilities of animals are often used in solving various cases, ranging from animal violence, theft, and even complicated crime cases. Curious, right, what animals can uncover criminal cases? Come on, see the facts below.
Flies have a unique ability that allows them to smell death from a distance of up to 16 km. Because of this, flies are often cited as the first witnesses in crime cases. According to Texas A&M University Forensic Entomologist at College Station, Jeff Tomberlin, the presence of flies on a corpse can provide a precise picture of when an animal or a person died.
In new corpses, it is usually the group of botfly flies or meat flies that arrive first. After a few days, the humpback fly group will take over the corpse. This fly, which is fond of living in meat, can dig up to a depth of 50 cm for 4 days.
When researchers collect fly samples around a crime scene, they try to find which type of fly is the oldest and first appeared, because that will give the most accurate estimate of the time of death. However, there are other variables that need to be considered, such as the ambient temperature or the ambient weather.
The first case of using flies as a settlement is recorded in the Forensic Science book Song Dynasty (960 – 1279) by Forensic Scientist Song Ci. In 1235, a farmer in a Chinese village was hacked to death with a sickle.
The judge then collected all the farming equipment in the village. After a few minutes of being left in the open, flies gathered on one of the farmer’s sickles, attracted by the scent of a trail of blood that could not be seen by the naked eye.
It turns out that maggots aren’t just nasty crawling insects, you know. After the mother, flies, perches and lays eggs on the corpse, the maggots that hatch from these eggs usually start to appear on the 4th day.
By examining the breathing apparatus of the maggots around the corpse can determine the approximate time of death, because the maggot’s breathing apparatus will continue to change over time. These tiny larvae also like to gather at the source of wounds. So if there is a maggot’s favorite part of a corpse, it should be done an in-depth examination for important clues.
In complicated cases, often decomposed corpses were found so that the identity was difficult to determine. Well, here the maggots also show their teeth in revealing it. Because they are fond of eating sperm or vaginal fluids, doing DNA tests and dissecting the digestive tract of maggots can determine the identity of the victim.
Even if there is suspicion of poisoning in the victim, it can be detected by extracting and carrying out laboratory tests on maggots. Wow, that’s amazing, huh!
Robert Grahn, a Lecturer and Research Scientist Assistant at the University of California revealed that cats are very useful for forensic analysis because of their habit of licking and spreading saliva on their fur.
When at a stalemate, investigators usually ask to test the cat hair found around the murder victim. The case where the DNA of this adorable animal was used for the first time as evidence occurred in Canada. In 1994, a white cat fur in the victim’s jacket helped catch Douglas Beamish for the murder of his wife.
In 2009 there was also a similar case, in which Henry Lee Polk was arrested after slitting Stephen Nolte’s throat based on evidence of finding cat hair in the victim’s pocket. The DNA results in the fur led investigators to the cat that was kept by the suspect.
The establishment of the Veterinary Genetic Laboratory at the University of California as the only accredited laboratory in the United States has helped many cases in comparing DNA samples of millions of cats, dogs, horses, cows, deer, and even wolves.
Although not used specifically in the investigation process, in fact the parrot’s ability to imitate scenes and sounds has helped the police solve several complicated cases.
In 2017, Glenna Duram shot her husband, Martin Duram, in front of their pet parrot named Bud. The police had difficulty finding evidence because the perpetrator had burned the previous crime scene.
In the process of investigating, Bud then repeated the words “don’t shoot” accompanied by cursing, which is believed to be the last scene where Glenna Duram shoots Martin. Bud also often imitated the Duram family quarrels.
Seeing this phenomenon, Irene Pepperberg, a scientist at Harvard University who specifically studies parrots, said that African gray parrots are the type that best imitates human voices, so they are most often kept.