Forensics, Anyone?

hank-2013-bioHANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: Breaking news, this just in, and all that kind of stuff. Are you going to Bouchercon? Have you seen this? This is going to be the most fabulous session on forensics you’ll ever encounter—the amazing Jan Burke is headlining an unbelievable line-up of experts—see below. (Death investigation, cadaver dogs, crime scenes, trace evidence, and answers to all the questions you can ask.) And it costs…fifty bucks!

Click below on “workshop registration” to sign up—let me know if you have any questions. Who’s up for this? See you there!

SinC into Great Writing VI!

A Forensic Science Day with Jan Burke

Bouchercon InformationWorkshop Registration

Featuring Donald Johnson, Beatrice Crofts Yorker, Katherine Roberts, Elizabeth Smith, Cat Warren and Jan Burke*

Wednesday, Nov 12, 2014 ♦ 7:30am–3:15pm* ♦ Renaissance Hotel, Long Beach, CA

Sisters in Crime is holding its annual SinC into Great Writing! one day prior to Bouchercon. Bouchercon registration is not necessary to attend this one day workshop.

*Note Well: Because our speakers are human beings and because they may be called upon to handle cases or testify in court, program subject to change without notice.

jan-burke-200A Forensic Science Day with Jan Burke

7:30–8:00 am: Registration

8:00–8:10 am: Welcome and introduction by Hank Phillippi Ryan. Logistics announcements by Jan Burke

8:10–9:00 am: Session 1 — Crime Scene Processing with Donald Johnson

9:00–9:50 am: Session 2 — Medical Serial Killers with Beatrice Crofts Yorker

9:50–10:05 am: Break

10:05–10:55 am: Session 3 — Trace Evidence with Professor Katherine Roberts

10:55–11:25 am: Question and Answer Session for morning speakers

11:25–11:55 am: Lunch Break (box lunch provided)

11:55–12:40 pm: Session 4 — Death Investigation: Homicide Detectives and Coroner’s Investigation with Elizabeth Smith

12:40–1:30 pm: Session 5 — Working with HDR (cadaver dogs) to Find Human Remains with Cat Warren

1:30–1:45 pm: Afternoon break fruit/sodas/coffee/tea provided

1:45–2:35 pm: Session 6 — What Writers Need to Know about Forensic Science and How to Learn More about It with Author Jan Burke

2:35–3:15 pm: Session 7 — Question and Answer Session for afternoon speakers

Cost: $50 for SinC Members. Not a SinC member? Join us at the Active or Professional level ($35/$40) and then register for this workshop.

When: Workshop check-in begins at 7:30am in front of the workshop room. Room details will be sent closer to the event.

Where: Renaissance Long Beach Hotel 11 E. Ocean Blvd. Long Beach, CA 90802. You may stay at the Renaissance or stay at one of the other conference hotels and take a short walk to the Renaissance. The conference hotels will extend the discounted conference rate to you if you call them 1-562-437-5900 directly. Fly in Tuesday night and start the workshop on Wednesday.

Notes: Attending Bouchercon? Have you made your hotel reservations for Bouchercon yet?

Questions: If you have any questions, you may contact us at


Donald Johnson has been actively involved in the forensic sciences for over two decades, both as a practitioner and academician. His career began with service to the Lucas County Coroner’s Office and the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner. He then advanced to senior criminalist at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, where he was an ASCLD/LAB qualified DNA analyst and specialized in the forensic investigation of violent crimes. Professor Johnson continues to serve forensic laboratories as a consultant and trainer. Professor Johnson received his graduate degrees at the UCLA School of Medicine, and has published on research in neurobiology and criminalistics in scientific journals such as Nature, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, and the Journal of Forensic Sciences. His research has received National Institute of Justice research grants. Professor Johnson is additionally investigating the role and impact of forensic evidence in the criminal justice process under a National Institute of Justice research grant given to Drs. Peterson and Sommers of the CSULA School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics. Professor Johnson brings his casework and research experience to the classroom in his teaching of forensic science to undergraduate and graduate students at CSULA.

Katherine Roberts is a Professor at California State University, Los Angeles and the Director of the university’s Criminalistics MS Degree Program. She has served on the National Institute of Justice’s Technical Working Group for Education and Training in Forensic Science. Dr. Roberts’ research interests relate to the development and application of analytical methods to enhance the value of forensic evidence. Her current projects focus on nuclear/mitochondrial DNA analysis and trace evidence analysis.

Beatrice Crofts Yorker is the Dean of the College of Health and Human Services for California State University, Los Angeles, of which the School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics, and the university’s forensic science programs are a part. She has both a juris doctorate from Georgia State University College of Law and master’s degree in nursing from the University of California, San Francisco. She has published groundbreaking research on hospital homicides, Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy, and medical serial killers.

Elizabeth Smith is a homicide detective with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Cat Warren is a former newspaper reporter and is currently a professor at the University of North Carolina, where she teaches a variety of reporting, editing, and science journalism classes. She is also a cadaver dog handler and author of What the Dog Knows: The Science and Wonder of Working Dogs, about dogs who work in the military, in police departments, and by searching for both contemporary and historical missing remains. She’ll talk about how cadaver dogs and their handlers are trained, the environments and conditions they work in, and what we do and don’t yet know about how dogs find the missing dead.

Jan Burke is a lifetime member of Sisters in Crime and the recipient of MWA’s Edgar Award for Best Novel. A New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, she is also an active advocate for the improvement of public forensic science. She founded the Crime Lab Project and has been an invited speaker at meetings of the National Institute of Justice, the American Academy of Forensic Science, the American Society of Crime Lab Directors, the California Association of Criminalists, and other forensic science organizations. She is a member of the advisory board of the California Forensic Science Institute. With Dr. DP Lyle, she hosts Crime and Science Radio, an online program produced by Suspense Magazine.


It’s going to be fabulous! An amazing unbelievable lineup of speakers—with insight and information and insider stuff you will never get anywhere else. I mean—look at that! All for fifty bucks!


Wrong GirlHANK PHILLIPPI RYAN is the on-air investigative reporter for Boston’s NBC affiliate. She’s won 30 EMMYs, 12 Edward R. Murrow awards and dozens of other honors for her ground-breaking journalism. A bestselling author of six mystery novels, Ryan has won multiple prestigious awards for her crime fiction: the Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, and for THE OTHER WOMAN, the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award. National reviews have called her a “master at crafting suspenseful mysteries” and “a superb and gifted storyteller.” Her newest thriller, THE WRONG GIRL, has the extraordinary honor of winning the 2013 Agatha Award for Best Contemporary Novel! A four-week Boston Globe bestseller, it was dubbed “Another winner” in a Booklist starred review and “Stellar” by Library Journal.  She’s on the national board of Mystery Writers of America and 2013 president of national Sisters in Crime. Watch for her next novel, TRUTH BE TOLD, on October 7, 2014.

Visit her online at, on Twitter @hank_phillippi and Facebook at HankPhillippiRyanAuthorPage.


About Lisa Haselton

Lisa Haselton has had several short mystery stories published and has a couple of novels in various stages of completion. She always enjoys learning new tidbits about other writers, and takes great pride as an editor when working with writers on polishing their manuscripts. She's living a life around her passions for writing, photography, volunteering, and anything related to New England, particularly New Hampshire.
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