intersession2017 forensiveScience COVER

This session gave students an insider's look into the Trace Evidence Unit at the NYPD Crime Laboratory — the largest and busiest municipal crime lab in the country. Is real crimescene investigation anything like the television series CSI? How did three tiny hairs found on a car floor mat help solve a kidnapping homicide? Lisa discussed real cases and showes how forensic scientists work meticulously on microscopic items of evidence in order to provide detectives with answers and investigative leads. Students learned how technological advances in DNA testing have drastically changed the way criminal cases are investigated and solved. This session also demonstrated how forensic scientists can put their skills to use outside the crime laboratory — from authenticating a Jackson Pollock painting to helping the writers of NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit make their series as realistic as possible.


Session Led By: Lisa Faber

Lisa Faber served as a supervising criminalist at the New York Police Department's (NYPD) Crime Laboratory, where she worked as a forensic scientist for eleven years, managing a unit that received over 3,000 cases annually. As a trace evidence analyst she performed thousands of forensic analyses and testified as an expert witness in a variety of criminal cases. Lisa also worked as the liaison between the NYPD Crime Laboratory and NYC's Rape Kit Backlog Project and the NYPD Cold Case Homicide Squad. With advancements in DNA testing technology, her role involved reviewing evidence from thousands of untested sexual assault kits and cold homicide cases in order to determine if any items were suitable for DNA testing. She implemented and managed the NYPD’s Biotracks Program, which involved collecting DNA "touch evidence" from no-suspect burglary scenes and entering eligible DNA profiles into state and national databases of convicted offenders. She was profiled in The New Yorker magazine and CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360°. She is now a forensic consultant for NBC's Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. She holds a master's degree in forensic science from George Washington University and a bachelor's degree from Harvard University.





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