1st Edition

Tire Tread and Tire Track Evidence
Recovery and Forensic Examination

ISBN 9780849372476
Published February 19, 2008 by CRC Press
368 Pages 271 Color & 200 B/W Illustrations

USD $160.00

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Book Description

Police success in linking vehicles to the scene of a crime through the impressions and tracks those vehicles leave behind has long served as a successful and reliable forensic tool. The collection and forensic evaluation of that evidence, however, requires specialized knowledge, training, and expertise.
Drawing from the author’s 34 years of experience, first as an FBI examiner and currently as a private consultant in the area of tire evidence, Tire and Tire Track Evidence: Recovery and Forensic Examination is the most comprehensive and up-to-date volume available on the subject. Covering all aspects of the field, the book begins with general information on the modern pneumatic tire and basic terminology. For both the crime scene technician and the forensic examiner, the author addresses information on both how to recover tire track evidence and how to photograph and cast the individual tread detail from those impressions.
The book explains and illustrates the necessary information on obtaining known exemplars; tire manufacturing, and retreading tires. It explains important aspects of tires including their tread design and dimension, noise treatment, general wear and individual acquired characteristics. The author instructs on applying that knowledge while conducting a structured examination procedure, resulting in the final evaluation of evidence and report writing as well as the presentation of tire evidence in court. He provides information on databases and resources along with case examples, including the Oklahoma City bombing.
Informative and useful, this book gives crime scene technicians and forensic examiners the tools to accurately and reliably collect, recover, and examine tire evidence.

Table of Contents

General Tire Information
From the Wheel to the Tire
The Pneumatic Tire
Tire Footprint or Contact Patch
How a Tire Carries the Load
Tire Evolution
Original Equipment Manufacturer Tires (OEM)
Replacement Tires
Tread Design
Information on Sidewalls
Wheels and Rims
Track Evidence
Track Evidence
How Vehicles Track
Tread Width
Track Width
Turning Diameter
Rolling Circumference
Making Measurements of the Suspect Vehicle
Aftermarket Wheels and Tires
Other Track Evidence
Documenting and Recovering Tire Impression Evidence
The Crime Scene
Putting Tire Impression Recovery in Perspective
Detail Retained in Impressions
Recovery of Impression Evidence
Original Tire Evidence
Photographing Tire Evidence at the Crime Scene
Casting Three-Dimensional Impressions
Dental Stone Materials
Determining the Powder-to-Water Ratio
Preparing the Impression for Casting
Labeling the Cast
Recovering the Cast
Drying and Cleaning the Cast
Tire Impressions in Snow
Dry-Casting Snow Impressions
Snow Print Wax® and Snow Impression Wax
Casting Snow Impressions with Sulfur
Lifting Tire Impressions
Known Exemplars of Tires for Elimination and Examination
General Information
Documenting Tires from Elimination Vehicles
Known Exemplar Impressions of a Suspect Vehicle
Dual Tire Assemblies
Key Points
Tire Manufacturing
Designing a Tire
Tire Mold Types
Mold-Making Methods
Tire Manufacturing
Tire Components
Building the Tire
Molding and Curing
Final Finishing and Quality Control
Retreaded Tires
Retreading Defined
How Tires Are Retreaded
Tire Inspection
Pre-Cure Method
Pre-Cure Tread Design Stock
Ring Tread Process
Mold Cure Method
Retread DOTR Number
Determining Whether a Tire Is Retreaded
Forensic Significance of Crime Scene Impressions Made by Retread Tires
Tread Design and Dimension
Tire Parameters Affect Design
Tread Design
Tread Design Terminology
Tread Design Categories
Other Categories or Types of Tread Design
Tread Dimension
Accuracy of Tread Dimensions in Impressions
Factors in Dimensional Evaluation
Noise Treatment
Modern Noise Treatment Differs on Each Tire Side
Tires without Noise Treatment
Tread Wear Indicators
Using Tread Wear Indicators and Noise Treatment Together
Noise Treatment and Tread Wear Indicator Combination Possibilities
Vehicles Tires of Multiple Tread Designs
Vehicle Tires of Varying Sizes
Tire Wear
Use of Wear in Forensic Examinations
Wear Terminology
Causes of Tire Wear
Characteristics of Tire Wear
Wear Characteristics Retained in Two-Dimensional Impressions
Wear Characteristics Retained in Three-Dimensional Impressions
Sipe Characteristics Change with Wear
Groove Depth and Taper
Tread Wear Indicators
Tread Depth Gauges
Potential Unreliability of Tread Depth Measurements
Forensic Significance of Wear
Individual Characteristics
The Individualization of a Tire
Examples of Individual Characteristics of Tires
Recording Individual Characteristics in a Substrate
Weight of Individual Characteristics
Changes in Individual Characteristics with Additional Wear
Examination Methodology and Procedure for Comparison of Tire Impressions
Structured Examination Procedure
Note Taking
Preparation for Examination
The Process of Examining Tire Impressions
Possible Results Regarding Tread Design and Dimension
Different Tread Design
Similar or Same General Tread Design
Tread Design and Dimension Correspond
Continuing the Examination Process
Partial Width Impressions
Reporting Results
The ACE-V Method
Additional Comments
Presenting Tire Evidence in Court
Demonstration Aids
Planning Ahead
Pre-Trial Meeting with Attorney
Testifying to Your Conclusions
Resources and Databases
Tire Guides, Inc.
Tire Business
Tire Retread Information Bureau
JATO Dynamics
Michigan and RCMP Track Databases
European Databases
SICAR TreadMate
Case Studies
Kunz Family Homicides
Mary Lou Arruda Homicide
Hit-and-Run Civil Case
The Tire Evidence in the Oklahoma City Bombing Case

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In Tire Tread and Tire Track Evidence: Recovery and Forensic Examination William J. Bodziak has crafted a sweeping, thorough treatment of every aspect of examinations and comparisons relating to tires. This comprehensive work integrates the hard, solid science and the subtle nuance of both procedural techniques and theoretical concepts. Bodziak articulately conveys the subjects clearly and unambiguously. From law enforcement agencies and crime laboratories to private examiners -- from district attorney offices to defense attorneys -- for anyone who documents, collects, evaluates, examines, or compares tires or tire prints or impressions -- Tire Tread and Tire Track Evidence: Recovery and Forensic Examination is the definitive resource.
— Rocky S. Stone, Albuquerque Police Department Crime Laboratory (retired), Forensic science private consultant

“This book is a must-have reference for any agency that compares, collects, or potentially could collect tire track evidence. 
“... I was pleasantly taken aback by how much I gleaned from reading this book.  I think any analyst who’s been doing this for a number of years will have the same experience.  For the experienced examiner, this book contains a great deal of information about tire manufacturing and how the various manufacturing processes can manifest themselves in the crime scene impressions ... .
“The book is well organized and thoroughly explains key details of both the collection and comparison processes. ...  Any agency that deals with tire track evidence on a regular basis ... will benefit from reading this book and having it as a reference.
“The book is illustrated with good quality color photographs and illustrations ...  useful tools for applying real world situations to what is being described in the book.
“The book also contains information about the most modern manufacturing techniques, and discusses issues relating to the most recent phenomenon in tire track comparisons: digital photography.
“...   I expect I’ll be using this book for reference for many years to come.”
— G. Matt Johnson, International Association for Identification, Science and Practices Subcommittee on Footwear and Tire Track Examination, Chairman


"…There is no doubt that any forensic examiner who works in the field of tire examination and comparison will find it imperative to add this to their library. …  Photographs and step by step instructions will aid those of all levels of experience … a thorough read of this book will bring any reader to a much greater understanding of the different degrees of tire impression conclusions and their potential value to an investigation.… Mr. Bodziak once again displays his great skill for attention to detail, comprehensive coverage and complete explanation of a forensic discipline.  There is no stone left unturned … This book is a first rate publication and destined to be a must have for the shelves of every crime laboratory."

— Lesley Hammer, Supervisor, Forensic Physical Unit, Alaska DPS Scientific Crime Detection Laboratory, writing in Science and Justice