Cadaver dogs--a study on detection of contaminated carpet squares

Oesterhelweg, L; Kröber, S; Rottmann, K; Willhöft, J; Braun, C; Thies, N; Püschel, K; Silkenath, J; Gehl, A (2008). Cadaver dogs--a study on detection of contaminated carpet squares. Forensic science international, 174(1), pp. 35-9. Shannon: Elsevier Scientific Publ. Ireland 10.1016/j.forsciint.2007.02.031

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INTRODUCTION: Cadaver dogs are known as valuable forensic tools in crime scene investigations. Scientific research attempting to verify their value is largely lacking, specifically for scents associated with the early postmortem interval. The aim of our investigation was the comparative evaluation of the reliability, accuracy, and specificity of three cadaver dogs belonging to the Hamburg State Police in the detection of scents during the early postmortem interval. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Carpet squares were used as an odor transporting media after they had been contaminated with the scent of two recently deceased bodies (PMI<3h). The contamination occurred for 2 min as well as 10 min without any direct contact between the carpet and the corpse. Comparative searches by the dogs were performed over a time period of 65 days (10 min contamination) and 35 days (2 min contamination). RESULTS: The results of this study indicate that the well-trained cadaver dog is an outstanding tool for crime scene investigation displaying excellent sensitivity (75-100), specificity (91-100), and having a positive predictive value (90-100), negative predictive value (90-100) as well as accuracy (92-100).

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Management

UniBE Contributor:

Oesterhelweg, Lars






Elsevier Scientific Publ. Ireland




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:56

Last Modified:

04 May 2014 23:16

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URI: (FactScience: 46600)

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