Many homicide investigations begin with little more to go on than a notion that someone died at the hand of another human.
Sometimes, though, all detectives have to go on is, well, a single body part, such as a human skull found in the woods among sticks and dried leaves.
The deceased could have met their end by animal attack, a fall, suicide, natural causes, or…murder. Therefore, close examinations of the remains are crucial. And, after a closer look at the skull in the above two photos we see something of definite interest—scrape marks consistent with the use of a tool with serrated edges, such as a steak knife. Murder? How else would the blade of a steak knife contact bare human bone?
So what’s the next step for detectives? Where and how do they begin when all they have to go on is a skull?
Well, it’s important to know the name of the victim, if possible. Then it’s easier to develop a list of potential suspects.
With no obvious source of DNA—blood, hair, body fluids, tissue, etc., the next place to search would be the root/pulp of the teeth.
In this case, forensic investigators extracted the molars (the only teeth remaining in the jaw bone) and packaged them for delivery to a testing lab. And, since detectives were simultaneously working a missing person case of suspicious nature, they obtained blood samples from the child of the missing person.
Officials sent the blood samples along with the teeth, hopeful that results would bring closure to both cases.
Unfortunately, due to exposure to harsh conditions and wildlife, no DNA was found in the teeth. The forensic anthropologist in charge then decided to try a unique approach—take core samples of the skull.
Using a drill much like the one found in a homeowner’s workshop or garage, and a specially designed bit, they obtained six plugs/cores.
The cores were packaged in a sterile tube and sent to a Lab Corp facility for testing, and for another attempt to match the skull with the blood samples obtained from the child.
As is the case with all forensic testing requests, proper documentation was again submitted.
This time, thanks to the persistence of investigators, the lab announced a positive match of the DNA found in the core samples and that found in the blood taken from the child. The murder victim and missing woman were proven to be one and the same.
Investigators could then begin their search for the killer. First up…the boyfriend, and it wasn’t long before he was serving time in prison.
Everyone has their own pet names for various items, and many people have used cute little nicknames for their favorite or not so favorite people. But when it comes to cops and their slang, well, it’s a language all it’s own. For example…
A little while – response offered to bad guys when they ask what they’re going to jail for… “A little while.”
Aluminum Shampoo – using a metal flashlight to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Angry Betty – usually a high and crazy, mad, arms-flailing female crackhead
Back To The Barn – heading back to the police station
Badge Bunny – woman obsessed with cops (I mean really obsessed…well, you get the idea). Cop groupies.
Basket Weave – design that’s stamped into a leather gun belt
Break Leather – drawing a firearm/weapon from its holster
California Roll – when a driver almost, but not quite, stops at a stop sign (they slowly roll past the sign through the intersection, never coming to a complete stop)
Canoe Maker – a medical examiner (during autopsy, an M.E. “scoops” out the insides leaving behind a human “canoe”)
Code Brown – got to get to the bathroom, and fast!
Connect The Dots – using a metal flashlight to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Cue Ball – a bad guy, especially a gang member, with a shaved head
Deuce – driving under the influence
Doing The Funky Chicken – a “Tasered”suspect’s flailing and erratic movements
Driving Miss Daisy – having an older, supervisory officer riding along on patrol
Duracell Shampoo – using a metal flashlight to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Fish Eye – a person is said to “fish eye” when he knows an officer is watching him, so he pretends not to notice. However, he’s quite obviously watching the officer out of the extreme corner of his eye while trying to keep his head aimed straight ahead
Flashlight Therapy – using a metal flashlight to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Foot Bail – to run from the police
Frequent Flyer – the person you arrest over and over and over again. Think Otis Campbell of Mayberry.
Grunt – patrol officer
Gump – Cross-dressing male prostitute. “Gender Unknown Male Prostitute”
Hang Paper – issue a traffic citation (ticket)
Happy Feet – suspect is a runner, or is about to flee
John Wayne – excessive use of force (He went all “John Wayne” on that guy.”)
Lead Poisoning – multiple gunshot wounds (Look at all the bullet holes. He must’ve died of lead poisoning)
Light ‘Em Up – initiate a traffic stop by turning on blue lights. Also used as an unofficial command to begin firing at a suspect(s)
Maglite Shampoo – using a metal flashlight to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Minnow Mounties – Fish and Game officers. Also known as Moose Marshals
Mutt – criminal. AKA – suspect, slimebag, scrote, and a**hole
On The Beach – suspended from duty
One-Oh-One X-ray – a male dressed as a female
Opossum Cop (‘Possum Cop) – Texas game warden
Organ Donor – a person riding a motorcycle without wearing a helmet
Out Of The Bag – an officer out of uniform, or a plainclothes officer/detective
Overheads – lights on top of a police car. AKA – lightbar
Paper Hanger – person who writes fraudulent checks
Pickle Park – highway rest area frequented by men attempting to “hook up” with other men
Polyester Pig Pile – When several officers “pile on” an extremely combative suspect to effect an arrest
Pumpkin Patch – Holding cell (bull pen) housing new prisoners dressed in orange jumpsuits
Q-Tips – elderly, white-haired folks traveling the highway, usually to and from Florida. From a distance they have the appearance of Q-tips lined up in a box
Rabbit – run from the police
Scooby Snack – a suspect who’s bitten by a police k-9
Screen Test – slamming on the brakes so the unruly, spitting suspect in the rear seat slides forward, hitting their head/face on the screen/divider between the front and rear compartments
Sergeant In The Trunk – GPS tracking system on patrol cars (an officer’s whereabouts is known at all times)
Swivel Head – the head-turning reaction exhibited by bad guys when they see a passing police car
Three-Striper – sergeant
Two Beers – the almost-always-used answer by drunk drivers when asked how much they’ve had to drink
Walkin’ the Dog – taking a break
Walnut Shampoo – yep, you guessed it, using a wooden baton to deliver a polite “love tap” to a combative suspect’s head
Whale – black and white police car with no lightbar
Yardbird – a suspect who springs from the bushes and takes off running
Zebra – a sergeant who’s not well-liked. An “ass” with stripes