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Personal profile

Area of academic expertise - outline

As a forensic science practitioner for over nine years I was involved in many national and international cases, including high profile cases.  My casework portfolio incorporates multiple offence and evidence types but was usually concerned with the interpretation and evaluation of DNA evidence, particularly cases which involved interpretation of complex profiles, or results from specialist analytical techniques.  

I continue to provide consultancy and expert witness reports particulalry in cases requiring expertise in forensic toxicology (drugs/alchol in body fluids/hair samples) and crime scene examination.

My research has focused on forensic toxicology in three different areas: development and validation of GC-MS and LC-MS/MS methods for the detection of drugs of abuse in blood; quality and proficiency testing within forensic toxicology; the driver Field Impairment Test (FIT) for the detection of drug impaired drivers.  With an interest in drug impairment, I have completed the Robert F. Borkenstein Course on the effects of drugs on human performance and behaviour (recommended for giving expert opinion in cases of driver impairment).  

I also have an interest in presentation of evidence and the use of a verbal scale to evaluate scientific results.

Current research activities

My main focus for research is forensic toxicology and development of methods for alternative sample matrices.

I am actively involved in raising awareness of the increase in anabolic steroid use in society.  I am currently reviewing the availability and potential harms of performance and image enhancing drugs, with a particular focus on anabolic androgenic steroids.

I am interested in investigating how 'forensic' analytical methods can be applied to other scientific disciplines.

 

Desired research direction

It is my ambition to expand and develop reserach in the forensic sciences at UWS through (a) development of new methods for detection of controlled substances (b) having a focus on emerging recreational and performance & image enhancing drugs (PIEDs), and (c) creating a body of expertise in effective methods of interpretation and presentation of scientific evidence to lay juries.

To contribute scientific experise to an internationally recognise centre for excellence in anabolic steroid research at UWS.

Target collaborative companies

Providers of toxicological analysis, point of care drug testing devices or sample collection devices

Those providing services to people who use drugs (e.g. needle exchange programmes)

 

 

Target collaborative organisations

Scottish Institue for Policing Research and the Forensic Science Regulator

The Universities of Glasgow and Strathclyde

The Home Office Centre for Applied Science and Technology

 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Devlopment Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

External Examiner, Teesside University

1 Sep 2017 → …

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