Much of the forensic literature is buried in journals that are no longer in print, or not available in libraries or online. The following is a bibliography of papers of interest to those studying forensic dentistry. For each paper there is a very brief “summary” and a link to the PDF article. These articles are provided for academic use only. If you hold the copyright to these publications and object to them being used in this way – please let us know using the contact us page.[hr]You can download here a list of all of the papers from 1960 through to 2011 – and many of the historical papers are here for you to use; download here.[hr]
You can link directly to all of the papers here, and they are broken down into sections under the menu.
1. 1960 Fearnhead RW. Med Sci Law; 1:273-77 Facilities for forensic odontology. Describes the use of hand drawn acetate overlays. Draws the conclusion that “evidence which involves the identification of a person by tooth-marks left as bruises in flesh should never be admitted”. Describes simple experiment. One of the first papers to question the use of bitemark evidence based upon the reliability of the technique.
2. 1963 Taylor DV. Brit Dent J; 114:389 The law and the dentist. Written by a dual qualified dentist and lawyer. Describes all aspects of forensic dentistry, including bitemarks. States “..unlikely to establish convincing proof in most cases”.
3. 1966 Layton JJ. J Forensic Sci Soc; 6:76-80 Identification from a bitemark in cheese. A bitemark in cheese found at a crime scene. Control bitemark made in similar cheese by the suspect and twenty points of similarity are discussed. Suspect admitted guilt. States that BMs can never be as positive as fingerprints.
4. 1966 Harvey W, Butler O, Furness J, Laird R. J Forensic Sci Soc; 8(4):157-219 The Biggar murder. Dental, medical, police and legal aspects of a case “in some ways unique, difficult and puzzling”. Extensive case report detailing a Scottish murder in which bitemark evidence played a key role in the conviction of the defendant, includes reports, numerous “dummy casts” over 80 pages and makes fascinating reading. One can reflect that little has changed in 50 years….
5. 1968 Furness J. Br Dent J; 124(6):261-7 A new method for the identification of teeth marks in cases of assault and homicide. Paper describes the inking of the occlusal surfaces of the teeth which are then photographed and placed on white board. Lines of comparison are drawn with photographs of the injury. Technique is still used today for court exhibits depicting bitemark comparisons.
6.1969 Furness J. J Forensic Sci Soc; 9:126-75 Teeth marks and their significance in cases of homicide. Paper claims to differentiate between marks made in self-defence, those made sadistically and “love-nips”. Unconvincing. Numerous case examples given. There is somewhat of a debate on the psychology of biting and the inferences that can be made about an attacker from the injury.