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Drug Overdoses, Right to Confrontation Among Issues Examined in Forensic Fridays Series

The Forensic Fridays continuing legal education (CLE) and professional education seminar series at Duquesne University continues this fall by exploring issues including death by medication, the Sixth Amendment right of confrontation, contemporary post-combat problems and forensic technology.

Presented by the Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law, the four-part series will feature:

  • Friday, Sept. 7, Death by Medication: Investigating the Prescription Drug Abuse EpidemicTopics include systemic problems in pharmaceutical care and medicine, and mechanisms of accidental overdose deaths.Featuring guest U.S. Attorney David Hickton and presenters Dr. Bruce Dixon, former director of the Allegheny County Health Department; Dr. Fred Fochtman, professor of pharmacy at Duquesne and former chief forensic toxicologist for the Allegheny County Coroner’s Office; Dr. Mary Mihalyo, assistant professor of pharmacy practice at Duquesne and clinical pharmacy coordinator for Trinity Health System; and forensic pathologist Dr. Cyril Wecht, whose expertise has been sought on the drug-related deaths of Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson.
  • Friday, Oct. 19, Scientific Evidence and the Right to ConfrontationThe seminar will take a look at procedural and substantive issues related to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, in which the court held it was a violation of the Sixth Amendment right of confrontation for a prosecutor to submit a chemical drug test report without the testimony of the person who performed the test. Featuring presenters James Kane Record, attorney and professor of criminal justice at California University of Pennsylvania, and Jane Campbell Moriarty, professor of law at Duquesne.
  • Thursday, Nov. 8, and Friday, Nov. 9, Post-Combat Problems in the 21st CenturyHeld in conjunction with this, the Wecht Institute’s 12th annual conference, the event will address the problems and issues faced in America with the return of tens of thousands of U.S. servicemen and women from Iraq and Afghanistan. Featured presenters TBA.
  • Friday, Dec. 14, Enhancing Courtroom Knowledge of Forensic TechnologyThis seminar will focus on introducing and enhancing the legal community’s understanding of the continuously evolving disciplines of forensic chemistry and DNA analysis and how they relate to the Frye or Daubert standards of admissibility.

All seminars, with the exception of the November Wecht Conference, will be held from 1 to 4:30 p.m. in the Africa Room of the Duquesne Union.

For more information, including cost and available continuing education credits, call visit www.duq.edu/forensics/forensic-fridays/, email wechtinstitute@duq.edu or call 412.396.1330.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.