September 30, 2012

Brain Injury Expert Witness On Traumatic Brain Injury Victims Part 1

In The Many Faces of TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY, brain injury expert witness Dr. John D. Lloyd, PhD, MErgS, CPE, CBIS, writes:

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is often considered the signature injury of the ongoing military conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. However, there are many more non-combat victims of the devastating effects of TBI, which can affect anyone, anytime, anywhere.

The very young and very old are both highly vulnerable to significant head trauma from otherwise innocuous household short falls. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), accidental falls are the number one cause of injury and number two cause of fatality in infants and young children. While teens and adolescents may believe they are superhuman at times, their young brains, which continue to develop into their mid-twenties, require extra protection due to the risky behaviors, which coincide with a peak in TBI fatalities. While the fully-formed adult skull may serve well as a helmet to protect the brain from milder impacts, there are many potentially injurious events that affect this group including automobile and motorcycle accidents, blunt force trauma, and impacts due to amateur and professional sports, including football, hockey, soccer, horse-riding, etc. Finally, in our golden years, where the brain atrophies, thereby increasing the risk of deformation, in combination with anti-coagulant (blood-thinning) therapies for various medical conditions can place elders at heightened risk of injury due to minor falls.

September 29, 2012

Forensic Accounting Expert Witness On Corporate Securities Lawsuits Part 1

In EFFECTIVE VALUATION & LITIGATION SUPPORT IN CORPORATE SECURITIES LAWSUITS, forensic accounting expert witness Richard M. Squar, CPA, CVA, ABV, CFF, MBA-Taxation, writes:

Okay, let’s face it. There are always important concerns for the board of directors of any company, public or private. Today you, Director, and the board and company are served a lawsuit from dissenting shareholders. The lawsuit asserts the shareholders’ right to appraisal and alleges that the directors did not meet their duties of care and loyalty to the corporation and shareholders you serve. Substantial damages are being claimed due to alleged corporate securities fraud.

Great. And you thought this was going to be a nice, warm, bright Orange County day! Do you lose your appetite, kiss and hug your spouse, and call your therapist? Of course. When the company’s legal counsel tells you not to worry, do you continue to worry? Of course. Do you go to the special board meeting with corporate legal counsel and begin dealing with the matter head-on? Of course you do. You’re a director!

The directors must, generally, perform their duties “with such care as an ordinarily prudent person in a like position would use under similar circumstances.” Violations of these duties will be asserted against the corporation and its directors by the shareholders. What areas might directors be confronted with regarding disputes involving securities that turn into litigation?

September 28, 2012

Medical Expert Testifies Re: Child's Injuries

Medical expert witness Dr. Steven Wolf testified in the case against grandparents Kenneth and Shelley Walker who are charged with giving their granddaughter second degree burns on her feet with scalding water. Wolf was one of the experts who said injuries to the two year old girl were not accidental. The Walkers are being held in the Smith County, TX, jail.

September 27, 2012

Construction Expert Witness On Defects Part 4

In Construction Process Can Lead to Defects, construction expert witness Michael S. Poles, GC, CM, RCI, DABFET, ACFE, writes on the complex process involved in a building project:

Building Materials
Before building materials can be used in any building, they are first run through a highly complex, and extensive engineering, testing, and review process. This review process is usually conducted by a vast number of independent testing laboratories and the results are reviewed by many professional committees, such as the American Society for Testing and Materials, (A.S.T.M.) and the International Conference of Building Officials, (I.C.B.O.).

Reports of the testing results and the Professional Societies' findings are published and updated regularly. These reports, often referred to as A.S.T.M. Standards, I.C.B.O. Reports, and Uniform Building Code Standards, state the minimum recommended standards for the use of the materials.

Architects and engineers refer to these "Standards" and specify them in their plans and specifications. Once these specifications are made part of the construction documents for a building project, it is incumbent upon the general contractor, all of the specialty contractors, and all of the materials suppliers to comply with the specifications.

September 26, 2012

Computers Expert On Recovering Deleted Email Part 2

In Challenges in Recovering Deleted Email computers expert witness Steve Burgess writes:

There are three main types of email in common usage - Microsoft Outlook (often paired with a Microsoft Exchange Server), text-based email client programs, and web-based email, or webmail.

In Microsoft Outlook, all emails are kept in one large, encrypted, non-text file - the PST, or Personal Folders file. Outlook has additional functions and additional content as well. There is an integrated address book, multiple mailboxes, a calendar, and a scheduler, all of which are contained within the PST file. When one looks into a PST file with a file editor or word processing application, there is little or nothing intelligible to the human eye. The file content looks like nearly random characters.

In general, the PST file must be loaded into Outlook to be read. When an email is deleted, or even when it is purged, it may be kept within the body of the single large file, but become inaccessible to the program. Some deleted data may be recovered by manipulating the file though a manual process, repairing the resultant file, and then loading back into Outlook.

Read more: http://www.burgessforensics.com/email_challenges.php.

September 24, 2012

Fire Expert Witness Testifies In Arson Case

Fire expert witness John J. Lentini testified last week in defense of Joseph Awe who is in prison for arson. Lentini, CFEI, F-ABC, of Scientific Fire Analysis, LLC, says the fire that burned down the Marquette County, WI, JJ's Pub was an accident started in an electrical box and not arson. The expert authored the book Scientific Protocols for Fire Investigation.

September 23, 2012

LACBA To Present Expert Witness Workshop

The Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Trial Advocacy Section on Monday, Oct. 8 presents its “TAP (Trial Advocacy Project): Expert Witness Workshop.”

According to the LACBA meeting announcement, “The Expert Witness Workshop” provides introductory and advanced level instruction on how to use expert witnesses in civil and criminal actions, with special emphasis on expert testimony.

According to the announcement:

“Topics covered in the program include evidentiary rules regarding expert opinions, taking and defending expert depositions, how experts can help and hurt a case, direct and cross-examination of expert witnesses, establishing and challenging expert qualifications, and advanced expert testimony techniques. In the workshop portion of the program participant’s conduct direct and cross-examination of an expert witness.”

The event begins at 8:30 a.m. at the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Mock Courtroom, 1055 West 7th Street, 27th Floor, Los Angeles.

Information is available by telephoning (213) 896-6560.

September 22, 2012

eDiscovery Webinar

Paralegal Knowledge Institute is offering a free one hour webinar Dispute Resolution and eDiscovery October 30, 2012. The instructors are Yoav M. Griver, Esq., Partner at Zeichner Ellman & Krause LLP and Daniel Garrie, Esq, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Legal Technology Risk Management and the Journal of Cyber Warfare. They co-authored the book, Dispute Resolution and eDiscovery.

More info: http://www.paralegalknowledge.com/eDiscoveryDisputeResolution

September 21, 2012

Computers Expert Witness On Computer Forensics

In What's the Future of Computer Forensics?, computers expert witness Steven G. Burgess writes:

As for 5 years from now, I see three things continuing to advance at a rapid clip:

1: Hardware -The size of storage media & memory and the speed of processors.
I expect that in 5 years, computers will come standard with 5TB or more of storage and that portable media like flash drives will carry something like 250GB of data - what the average hard drive was holding one or two years ago. In 5 years, computers will probably be 7 or 8 times faster. So these things will hold lots and lots more data and people will fill them up with lots & lots more data.Therefore, each computer forensics job will require sorting through and analyzing many times more data than today.

2: Computer Forensic Tools - The capabilities, automated nature and cost of computer forensic tools.
I expect that in 5 years, computer forensic tools will be about 5 times as fast, and twice as sophisticated. That means that even with all the additional data, the average, non-automated job will take about the same effort as it does now.

However, a lot of automated tools for collection and initial processing are starting to be released. These tools can be used by less-trained people, so it may be that data collection and preliminary processing will be faster due to automation.

I expect that the cost of computer forensic tools will not go down in relative terms. However, more Open Source forensic tools will be available for free for those willing to learn to use them.

3: Bad guys - Anti-forensics tools & schemes, sophistication of hackers
There's always a race between how harmful software and cyber-marauders can be and the defenses against them. There is also software constantly being developed to stump investigation by erasing or scrambling traces of wrongdoing. This trend will continue to accelerate and there will continue to be an uneasy balance between the two sides, with lots of collateral damage. In most cases, people will continue to forget to hide or cover all of their tracks and there will still usually be evidence to find.

Read more: http://blog.computerforensicsblog.com/

September 20, 2012

Patents Expert Witnesses

Patents expert witnesses may testify on computer patents, design patents, international patents and licensing, and related matters. On patentdamages.com, attorneys Chris Marchese and Justin Barnes comment on "the fast moving world of patent damages." Sign up for their blog here: http://feeds.feedburner.com/PatentDamages.

September 19, 2012

Construction Expert Witness On Defects Part 3

In Construction Process Can Lead to Defects, construction expert witness Michael S. Poles, GC, CM, RCI, DABFET, ACFE, writes on the complex process involved in a building project:

Cost vs. Profit
The pursuit of lower costs can become a powerful driving factor, which all too often leads to construction defects, especially during a recession such as the current recession that the construction industry has faced throughout the past four years. These highly competitive elements are forcing contractors into resorting to the
widespread practice of using semiskilled, and, most often, unskilled labor to perform skilled labor tasks. These skilled labor tasks in the past have always required extensive training, certification, and years of experience.

In addition to this widespread and growing practice of the utilization of questionably skilled labor, supervision is also waning. All too often, semiskilled and even unskilled crews are left to their own devices to perform their work on the job site without proper supervision or even without any supervision at all.

September 17, 2012

Wireless Technology Expert Witness On Hiring An Expert Part 1

In The Seven Rules for Hiring a Wireless Technology Expert, wireless technology expert witness Jonathan Wells PhD, MBA,
President, AJIS Wireless Consulting, writes:

Nowadays, wireless technology is ubiquitous. We all carry cell phones, navigate via GPS, check our emails when sitting in coffee shops and hotel rooms, and connect to the internet wirelessly from our homes and offices. Wireless technology is readily available, always on, and everywhere.

The use of wireless technology in litigation is also common. Wireless forensics is becoming widely used in both criminal and civil cases. Wireless technology can be used to remotely monitor phone calls, emails and internet activity, track cell phones, determine the position of criminal activity, and establish the location of parolees and fugitives. In the intellectual property area, vast numbers of mobile, cellular and wireless patents are awarded annually. Wireless
technology experts can support patent litigation by providing expertise and analysis on issues of infringement, validity, and value.

There are a number of factors that make retaining a wireless technology expert a daunting experience. The field of wireless technology is wide, the topic is deep and the specifics are complex. This article provides seven things you should look for when hiring a wireless technology expert to help guide you through this minefield.

September 16, 2012

Environmental Expert On Construction Project

Environmental expert Edward Kuk spoke before the Bridgewater, NJ, planning board regarding the environmental impact should developer Steven Lang build 18 homes on 34 acres of woodlands. Sixty nearby homeowners are hoping to stop approval of the construction application citing negative impact on wildlife and vegetation.

September 15, 2012

Criminalistics Expert Witness Testifies In Christopher Vaughn Case

Criminalistics expert witness expert witness Paul Kish testified in the case against Christopher Vaughn who says his wife gunned down their three children before taking her own life. The bloodstain expert said the evidence does not support Vaughn's defense.

September 12, 2012

Emergency Medicine Expert Witness On CT Scan Risks

In CT Scans Linked to Leukemia and Brain Cancer, emergency medicine expert witness Dr. Barry Gustin writes:

Children undergoing computed tomography (CT) scans with cumulative radiation doses of about 50 mGy had about triple the risk for leukemia, and those who received doses of about 60 mGy had nearly triple the risk for brain cancer, according to the results of a retrospective cohort study published online June 7 in the Lancet. Radiation exposure from CT scans in childhood could triple the risk of leukemia and brain cancer.

The study authors note that CT scans are very useful diagnostically, but that children are more radiosensitive than adults and may therefore have additional potential risks for cancer from ionizing radiation. The study goal was to determine the excess risk for leukemia and brain tumors after CT scanning in a cohort of children and young adults.

September 10, 2012

Construction Expert Witness On Defects Part 2

In Construction Process Can Lead to Defects, construction expert witness Michael S. Poles, GC, CM, RCI, DABFET, ACFE, writes on the complex process involved in a building project:
Competitive Bidding
The low bidder gets the contract. With the competitive bidding process, the only way for a contractor to be awarded the contract is that he / she must first be designated the low bidder. In order to be designated the low bidder, it can either mean that the successful bidder has a substantial following of subcontractors and material
suppliers that are highly cost effective and are capable of furnishing low quotations for their collective work. Or, it could mean that one or more of them omitted one or more items in their cost breakdown that could equate to a lot of money ... missed.

When a low bid is received by a general contractor from their subs and suppliers, it is often wondered by the recipient just what and how much the low bidder left out of his / her bid and whether or not to take the chance of using that low bid. The dilemma is always raised ... "Well, if they bid this number to us, then they surely must
have bid it to our competition". And, to make things worse, most of the sub bids are received by telephone only moments before the prime contract bid is to be submitted, and; therefore, the general contractor has precious little or no time available to scrutinize this temptation, otherwise known as the "last minute low bid".

September 9, 2012

Professional Engineering Expert Is Key Speaker At Construction Seminar In Qatar

Professional engineering expert witness Paul Gogulski says the construction industry can rebuild America. "Provided we learn from history, improve ethics and let civil engineers take the lead, we can rebuild America," said Paul Gogulski. Mr. Gogulski is the key speaker at a construction and engineering seminar in Qatar Sept. 9-11.

Mr. Gogulski is a professional engineer and president of Gogulski & Associates Inc. with over 50 years’ experience in general contracting, forensic engineering, facilities planning and construction consulting

September 7, 2012

Accident Reconstruction Expert Witness Testifies In Bicycle Deaths

Accident reconstruction expert witness Charles Ruble testified in the San Antonio, TX, homicide trial of Gilbert John Sullaway Jr. Sullaway killed two bicyclists in 2009 when he was speeding and drove onto the shoulder of the San Antonio highway.

September 6, 2012

Child Sexual Assault Expert Witness Testfiies In Case Against Four Boys

Child sexual assault expert witness Tara Healy testified in the case against four 12 and 13 year old New York defendants. Healy is the sexual assault forensic examiner for Good Samaritan Hospital, Ramapo, NY, and examined the 14 year old girl. Rockland County Court Judge Sherri Eisenpress is presiding.

September 4, 2012

Construction Expert Witness On Defects Part 1

In Construction Process Can Lead to Defects, construction expert witness Michael S. Poles, GC, CM, RCI, DABFET, ACFE, writes on the complex process involved in a building project:

When relative to construction claims, the word defect also equates to financial disaster when it reaches litigation.

The process that it takes to construct any building project is an extremely complex process. It is replete with architects, engineers, professional societies and associations, manufacturers and suppliers, building officials, general contractors, specialty contractors, and a virtual army of labor which lends itself to numerous volumes, many years of education, and specialized training.

As with most businesses, construction is an extremely competitive industry. Often referred to as a "dog-eat-dog" way to make a living.

This article is intended to give the reader a thumbnail sketch of how the system, as it applies to the construction process, really works and how it can often lead to defects during construction.

September 2, 2012

Forensic Pathology Expert Witness Testified In Drew Peterson Case

Forensic pathology expert witness Dr. Mary Case testified in the murder case against Drew Peterson. Dr. Case is a professor in the Saint Louis University School of Medicine Department of Pathology specializing in adult head trauma as well as the Chief Medical Examiner of St. Louis County, Mo. She testified that the injuries Kathleen Savio, Peterson's third wife, suffered were not consistent with falling in her bathtub.