Assault: A Forensic Handbook
Marc A. LeBeau and Ashraf Mozayani
Academic Press, San Diego, California, 2001
Carl S. Hornfeldt
Manager of Professional Services
Orphan Medical, Incorporated
Marc A. LeBeau
and Ashraf Mozayani brought together toxicologists, sexual assault
nurse examiners, psychiatrists, law enforcement professionals, and
attorneys who share their expertise about the many aspects of drug-facilitated
sex crimes in Drug-Facilitated Sexual Assault: A Forensic Handbook.
These authors provide a comprehensive examination of drug-facilitated
sexual assault. In the Preface, the editors acknowledge that "This
book was written to aid the 'investigators' of drug-facilitated
sexual assault (DFSA). This includes law enforcement, medical professionals,
rape crisis personnel, attorneys, and forensic scientists who are
put into the difficult situation of dealing with this crime. It
was also written to help dispel a number of myths that exist surrounding
in order to better educate these investigators."
The first two
chapters lay the foundation for drug-facilitated sexual offenses.
The first chapter is devoted to the victim. It provides a description
of the victims of these crimes, how they become victimized, and
the various relationships the victims have with their assailants.
It outlines the scope of the problem in the United States, describes
the physical and emotional suffering that victims endure, and offers
valuable suggestions for investigators interviewing drug-facilitated
sexual assault victims. The chapter also describes the uniqueness
of the crime pattern, the victim's trauma, and the legal protocols.
The second chapter
describes the perpetrators of these crimes, who they are, the reasons
they perform these acts, and their modes of operation. The author
points out that the perpetrators are not always strangers but can
be family, acquaintances, or friends relying on the amnesia the
drug induces. The perpetrators can also be older, weaker offenders
relying on the incapacitation a drug produces. The use of factual
statements and descriptions from drug-facilitated sexual assault
victims make this part of the book poignant as well as informative.
The next six
chapters of the book, Chapters 3-8, provide detailed information
about the drugs most commonly used to perform these crimes. Each
drug is described with its role in sexual assault crimes; its clinical
and toxic effects; its chemistry, physicochemical properties, pharmacokinetics,
and pharmacology; and the analytical methods used to detect each
agent or family of agents. These chapters cover common and classical
agents such as ethanol, flunitrazepam, hallucinogens, opioids, and
GHB, as well as less commonly considered agents including antihistamines
discuss evidence collected from drug-facilitated sexual assault
crimes. Chapter 9 discusses techniques for collecting evidence of
a biological, chemical, and genetic nature. It includes what can
be collected as evidence from the victim (e.g., urine, blood, hair,
saliva); and from the crime scene (e.g., pills, containers, condoms);
and how it should be collected, preserved, and transported. Chapter
10 offers descriptions of toxicology, serology, and DNA analyses,
including available techniques, limits of detection, and result-reporting.
Chapter 11 discusses
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE) and physicians referred to
as Sexual Assault Forensic Examiners (SAFE). The nurses and physicians
are part of the Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) providing forensic
evaluation, treatment of rape-related trauma, and sexually transmitted
disease prophylaxis for the drug-facilitated sexual assault victim.
The chapter also describes the role of nurse specialists in crisis
intervention and legal advocacy referral.
The last two
chapters of the book, Chapters 12 and 13, discuss the criminal investigation
and prosecution of drug-facilitated sexual crime cases. Chapter
12 explains culture trends and the drugs associated with them. It
provides descriptions of the current rave scene and popular club
drugs, innovative techniques for interviewing drug-facilitated sexual
assault victims and suspects, protocols and strategies used during
investigations and interviews, information on the use of sexual
assault evidence kits, and advice on testing and interpreting the
samples and results. Chapter 13 presents the steps involved in preparing
for the pretrial and trial. It examines the value of the evidence,
the interpretation of the results, and the role and credibility
of the prosecution and defense experts such as the sexual assault
nurse examiner or the toxicologist. The authors discuss the cross-examination
of jury members, witnesses, and experts; the challenge of being
cross-examined; and the preparation of arguments and conclusions.
have included the following three appendices to assist the investigator:
A is a sample questionnaire for drug-facilitated sexual assault
B is a sample toxicological request form for drug-facilitated
sexual assault cases.
C is a sample search warrant for drug-facilitated sexual assault
Sexual Assault: A Forensic Handbook is referred to as a handbook;
however, it is better described as a comprehensive textbook. Each
chapter is thoroughly referenced. This 300-page book should be considered
a valuable resource for anyone involved in the investigation, evaluation,
treatment, and prosecution of drug-facilitated sexual assault.