Deborah G. Jozwiak

320 Fisher Hall
600 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15282
Phone: 412-396-1330
Fax: 412-396-1331

    A A Email Print Share

    The Annual Conference

    Since its inauguration in the fall of 2000, the Wecht Institute has hosted an Annual Conference that convenes local and national figures from a wide variety of disciplines in an effort to shed greater light upon a particular set of issues.The Science, Law and Politics of Cold Case Investigations

    Finding Closure ad image

    14th Annual Symposium

    Power Center Ballroom
    Duquesne University


    What do the JonBenet Ramsey murder, the BTK killings and the Centennial Olympic Park bombing have in common? When does a criminal case go "cold," and what does it take to "thaw it out" again? At a time of laboratory backlogs and funding cuts, what warrants the re-opening of a cold case? How much physical evidence is enough, and what sort of witness is compelling enough? What are the political hurdles involved and how can they be overcome? How have DNA analysis and other scientific advances made it possible to re-investigate and successfully prosecute cold cases?
    What makes some cases ultimately unsolvable?
    For answers to these questions and many more, please join:
    • Internationally renowned criminalist Dr. Henry Lee
    • Manhattan District Attorney's Office Cold Case Unit Chief Melissa Mourges
    • Behavioral analyst and former FBI Supervisory Special Agent Mark Safarik
    • Detective and American Investigative Society of Cold Cases Founder Ken Mains
    • Former North Carolina cold case prosecutor Michael Parker
    ... and a host of other investigative, scientific and legal experts


    Annual Symposium

    One Day

    Annual Symposium


    Early Bird Deal

    Full Annual Symposium

    (expires 9/30/2014)

    CLE-Priv. Atty. $160 $288 $272
    CLE-Public Atty./Judges $120 $216 $204
    CE-Nurses $120 $216 $204
    CE-Coroners $85 $153 $145
    CE-Social Workers $125 $225 $213
    General Public $40 $72 $68
    Non-DU students (post-secondary) $20 $36 $34

    For Online Registration click here

    For a Finding Closure mail-in registration form, click here.

    For DU Student and Staff registration forms, click here.

    To learn more, please bookmark and visit in the weeks and months to come, or join the Institute's email list by contacting us at 412-396-1330 or


    The Assassination Archives and Research Center (AARC) is pleased to host a conference commemorating the 50th anniversary of the release of the Warren Commission Report on the Assassination of President Kennedy: "The Warren Report and the JFK Assassination: A Half Century of Significant Disclosures." The three-day conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Bethesda, Maryland, September 26 through September 28, 2014.

    The Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law will co-sponsor the conference.

    Many noted authorities have committed to speak at the conference, including Russell Baker; Prof. G. Robert Blakey; Jim D'Eugenio; Marie Fonzi; Robert Groden; Dan Hardway, JD; David Kaiser, PhD; Prof. Joan Mellen; Jefferson Morley; Prof. John Newman; Dr. Randolph Robertson; Prof. Peter Dale Scott; Dr. Wayne Smith; Tony Summers; Dr. Donald Thomas; Prof. Ernst Titovets, MD, PhD; Lamar Waldron; Dr. Cyril H. Wecht, MD, JD; and many others. A complete list of confirmed speakers and more details about the conference will be found at the AARC's website.

    Our hotel host has extended a very special room rate of only $119 (+ tax) per night for conference attendees. Double-occupancy surcharges and in-room Wi-Fi charges have been waived. For those who may want to extend your visit to the D.C. area the Hyatt-Regency has agreed to extend this special room rate to three days preceding and following the conference.

    The conference will focus on what we have learned of major significance from the additional 4 million pages released since the issuance of the Warren Report on September 26, 1964. Particular attention will be paid to disclosures made under the JFK Records Act and on the need to secure the release of the Act documents that remain withheld a half century later.

    Register at our web site now (, and please pass the word on to your respective networks.

    Also please register for e-mail updates at our web site and please also consider becoming a dues-paying member of the AARC.

    For further information contact
    Jerry Policoff, Executive Director:
    Cell: (717) 682-4434

    Previous symposiums:


    Passing the Torch
    An International Symposium on the 50th Anniversary of the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy
    October 17-19, 2013

    Following up on its world-renowned 40th anniversary conference, the Wecht Institute is pleased to announce its plans to re-convene many of the leading scientific and legal experts on the murder case that has fascinated and perplexed us for decades.  As the JFK assassination and many of its witnesses, investigators and researchers begin to recede into history, this symposium is intended in large part to interest and inform young people from the Pittsburgh region, across the country and beyond about one of the seminal events of 20th century American history, and why it still matters today.


    Post-Combat Problems in the 21st Century
    Medical, Legal, and Societal Considerations
    November 8-9, 2012

    With the return of tens of thousands of U.S. servicemen and women from Iraq and Afghanistan, among other locales, American society today faces problems not experienced on the same scale since the post-Vietnam era.  From the diagnosis and treatment of traumatic brain injuries and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder to the retrieval and identification of human remains to the challenges of returning to civilian life in a time of economic and political turmoil, the issues facing American military veterans in 2012 are legion.

    In consideration of the complex blend of medial, legal and public policy questions prompted by this topic, they Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law has selected as the theme of its 12th Annual Conference, "Post-Combat Problems in the 21st Century." Scheduled for Thursday, November 8 and Friday, November 9 in the Power Center Ballroom, the program will convene experts in such wide-ranging disciplines as psychology, DNA analysis, anthropology, occupational therapy, domestic abuse and criminal law.


    Predators and Their Prey:  A National Conference on the Investigation and Prosecution of Sexual and Violent Serial Offenders October 21-22, 2011.

    This year's conference convened experts in behavioral science, digital forensics, criminal law, vicitmology and related fields to address various topics pertaining to the psychology and modus operandi of criminal predators, as well as the latest investigative methodologies and legal strategies being used to catch and convict them.

    Conference Website


    Cause of Death:  An Interdisciplinary Look at the State of Forensic Death Investigation.  November 19-20, 2010

    Conference Website


    Evidence in the Information Age:  A National Symposium on the Collection, Analysis and Legal Application of Digital Evidence. October 23-24, 2009.

    Conference Website


    Where Fact Meets Fiction: A National Symposium on the Intersection of Forensic Science and Pop Culture: the 8th Annual Forensic Science and Law Conference.  Conference website.


    Preserving Evidence, Saving Lives: The Roles of Forensic Science, Medicine and the Law in Mass Disaster Response: The 7th Annual Forensic Science and Law Conference, Preserving Evidence, Saving Lives. Conference website


    Justice for All: A National Symposium on the Role of Forensic Science in the Evolution of Criminal Justice Reform: the 6th Annual Forensic Science and Law Conference.  Conference website.


    Tracking Terrorism in the 21st Century: A National Symposium on the Roles of Science and Law in Preventing, Investigating and Prosecuting Political Violence: the 5th Annual Forensic Science and Law Conference.  Conference information


    Solving the Great American Murder Mystery: A National Symposium on the 40th Anniversary of the JFK Assassination. Conference information


    Law, Family and Violence: A Multidisciplinary Symposium. Conference information


    DNA and the Law. Conference brochure


    Forensic Science and the Law.

    Conference brochure

    *For information on past news and events other than the Annual Conference, please click here.

    Are you interested in learning more about one of these topics, but were unable to attend the conference?  Well, click here to learn more about purchasing video from a number of the Wecht Institute Conferences and Seminars.