HemoSpat version 1.8 introduced the capability to do stain selection within HemoSpat. Using reference images, the user analyzes one stain in the image and the Point Select tool allows the analysis of any other stain in the image very quickly.

This process has several benefits:

  • it speeds up the documentation process dramatically
  • it encourages the use of more stains for an analysis
  • it allows peer review of the stain selection process

In June 2015 I had the opportunity to teach a HemoSpat course at the Canadian Police College (CPC). We used HemoSpat version 1.8 and focused on using the new stain selection technique. It was clear that documenting the scene was a lot faster and that the analysts tended to use more stains in their analysis of the impact patterns. Overall it was a great validation of the process.

This was also a great opportunity for me to see the new feature in action – what worked, what didn’t, and what could be improved. I used this information along with feedback from the class in order to fine tune the process. HemoSpat version 1.9 introduces these refinements to make the process clearer and more streamlined.

HemoSpat Stain Selection - Example Reference Image

HemoSpat Stain Selection – Example Reference Image

In this article I will outline the process of documenting and analyzing stains using the new Point Select tool.


I had the opportunity to teach a two day HemoSpat course at the Canadian Police College (CPC) this past week. Last year, Sgt. Jennifer Barnes, a HemoSpat user from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), contacted me and asked if I ever put on HemoSpat workshops. This conversation evolved into the creation of a two day class organized by Sgt. Beverly Zaporozan the Forensic Identification Training Coordinator at CPC. She did a fantastic job organizing everything so it all ran smoothly.

We had fourteen students from across Canada and the US. They came from five different organizations: several RCMP National Forensic Identification Support Services sections, the Edmonton Police Service, the Toronto Police Service, the Waterloo Regional Police Service, the Vancouver Police Department, and the US Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) were all represented.

The course had both classroom and practical components. The lecture part covered scene documentation extensively – both surface and pattern – along with a review of key concepts and sections on how HemoSpat works under the hood, 3D exporters, working with laser scanner point clouds, and some cast-off pattern research.

Over the course of two days, the students documented and analyzed two scenarios – the first consisted of multiple impacts using “regular surfaces”:

CPC HemoSpat Course - Scenario 1

CPC HemoSpat Course – Scenario 1

The second one had multiple angled surfaces – a sloped ceiling and a cabinet in the corner – and multiple impacts:

CPC HemoSpat Course - Scenario 2

CPC HemoSpat Course – Scenario 2

One of the areas we focused on was the use of the new Reference Image and Point Select tool from HemoSpat 1.8. This allows the analyst to photograph groups of stains and do stain selection in HemoSpat.

CPC HemoSpat Course - Reference Image Example

CPC HemoSpat Course – Reference Image Example
Any stains in this image may be used for analysis

This sped up the documentation process dramatically. It was also interesting to note that, as a result of the new technique, the analysts tended to work with more bloodstains than they normally would.

Staff Sgt. Gord Lefebvre of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) provided invaluable assistance – creating the patterns, teaching part of the pattern documentation section of the course, and answering questions in the hands-on documentation and analysis parts.

CPC HemoSpat Course - Gord Creating An Impact Pattern

CPC HemoSpat Course – Gord Creating An Impact Pattern

The feedback from the students was overwhelmingly positive so I hope I will have the opportunity to teach the course again and that we can open up the registration to other organizations.

CPC HemoSpat Course - Scenario Analyzed

CPC HemoSpat Course – Scenario Analyzed
Exported in 3D and displayed using Apple Preview

We collected all the data – photographs and location documentation – from the six experiments (three groups, two scenarios each). If any HemoSpat users are interested in downloading this data, please contact me.

Bloodstain Search and EnchanceMartin Eversdijk [Loci Forensic Products] and Paul Kish [Forensic Consultant & Associates] are conducting a Visualization of Latent Bloodstains course at Elmira College in Elmira, NY, USA. There are two sessions: 6-10 June, 2011 and 13-17 June, 2011. Each session is limited to 16 participants.

This course will provide the participants with first-hand knowledge of how and when to employ searching and enhancement techniques to locate and visualize latent bloodstains. Students will acquire first-hand knowledge of the benefits as well as the limitations of commonly used chemical searching and enhancement techniques.

Upon completion of this course, the participants will have acquired a basic understanding of how and when to use blood searching and enhancing chemicals to assist in their investigation where latent blood is suspected.

This course is recommended for investigators, crime scene technicians, and forensic scientists who routine search for blood at crime scenes as well as on articles of physical evidence.

Some of the topics include:

  • Searching vs. Enhancing Techniques
  • Blood Searching Techniques using Luminol, Lumiscene, and Fluorescein
  • Blood Enhancement Techniques including Amido Black, Acid Fuchsin (Hungarian Red), Aqueous Leucocrystal Violet (ALCV), Titanium Dioxide, and others
  • Photographic Documentation
  • Introduction to IR Photography
  • Health and Safety Issues

For more information, you may download the brochure at the Loci Forensic Products Lumiscene page.

Brian Allen of the Ontario Police College (OPC) is accepting applications for an Advanced Bloodstain Pattern Analysis Course taking place at OPC in Aylmer, Ontario, Canada from 30 August – 04 September 2010.

This course is designed for those wishing to become Bloodstain Pattern Analysts. It is expected that students will have previous bloodletting crime scene experience. Emphasis is on presenting BPA expert evidence, report writing and the analysis of complex bloodletting scenes. Students will be exposed to the latest computer analysis technology.

Further information may be obtained at the Ontario Police College or by contacting Brian Allen:

Brian Allen - Instructor
Forensic Identification Training
Ontario Police College
10716 Hacienda Rd., Box 1190
Aylmer, Ontario
N5H 2T2

Phone: (+1) 519-773-4258
Fax:   (+1) 519-773-5762