Author(s): Schuler RL, Kish PE, Plese CA
The analysis of bloodstain patterns can assist investigators in understanding the circumstances surrounding a violent crime. Bloodstains are routinely subjected to pattern analysis, which is inherently dependent upon the ability of the examiner to locate and visualize bloodstain patterns on items of evidence. Often, the ability to properly visualize bloodstain patterns is challenging, especially when the stain patterns occur on dark and/or patterned substrates. In this study, preliminary research was performed to better understand how near-infrared reflectance hyperspectral imaging (HSI) could be used to observe bloodstain patterns on commonly encountered black fabrics. The ability of HSI to visualize latent bloodstains on several commonly encountered substrates is demonstrated. The images acquired through HSI are of sufficient quality to allow for differentiation between stains produced from an impact mechanism or a transfer mechanism. This study also serves as a proof of concept in the differentiation of multiple staining materials. Because of its ability to generate spectral data, the data provide a preliminary separation of stains where more than one type of stain existed.