News and Events

Forensic Odontology: Is it CSI Dentistry?

Forensic Dentistry

March 01, 2014
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, San Francisco

Event Category: Conferences and Retreats|Special Events|Continuing Education

If you are curious how forensic dentists work within the criminal justice system, how your dental practice might someday be involved in a dental identification or human abuse report or how some of California's high-profile criminal cases have used forensic dentistry, then join us for this informative program. The presenters are all diplomates of the American Board of Forensic Odontology, fellows of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and consultants to the California Department of Justice, Missing and Unidentified Persons Unit. They will discuss their experiences with dental identifications in mass disasters such as 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina; bite mark evidence in assaults, abuse and homicide cases; animal cases such as the SF Zoo tiger case in 2007; dental aspects of specific California cases including the Xiana Fairchild kidnapping and homicide and the Castro Valley teen Jane Doe case; and identification efforts with the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, the 1991 East Bay firestorm and the 2010 San Bruno pipeline explosion.

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You Will Learn

  • Dental identification techniques in mass disasters, accidents and homicides
  • How bite mark evidence is used in cases involving assaults, abuse and homicides
  • How the Department of Justice uses dental evidence in cases with missing and unidentified persons
  • The importance of dental records for dental identification in forensic cases

Who Should Attend

All dentists and allied dental professionals are encouraged to attend this informative course.

Tuition:  $245 Dentists; $185 Allied Dental Professionals (includes continental breakfast)   
Program:  9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Check-in:  8:30 am
Credits:  This activity is designated for 6 continuing education credits

Register online >>


Duane Spencer, DDS, is a forensic dental consultant to Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Solano and Merced counties and to the California Commission on Peace Officers' Standards and Training. He has lectured internationally and has published works with an emphasis on child abuse recognition. A 1965 graduate of the USC School of Dentistry, Dr. Spencer maintains a private pediatric dental practice in Walnut Creek, CA.

John Berk, DDS, is a forensic dental consultant to Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo and Solano counties. A fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and a member of the Federal Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team Region IX, Dr. Berk lectures frequently on forensic odontology. He is a 1970 graduate of UCSF School of Dentistry and currently teaches at Pacific's Union City Dental Care Center.

Gregory Mar, DDS, MA, is a forensic dental consultant to the San Francisco Medical Examiner and a lieutenant with the San Francisco Police Department. A 1988 graduate of Pacific, Dr. Mar has a private practice in San Mateo and is a part-time assistant professor in the Department of Dental Practice at Pacific. He also received a master's degree in educational psychology from University of the Pacific in 1993.

James Wood, DDS, is a forensic dental consultant to six Northern California counties and was a co-founder of the California Dental Identification team. He is also a member of the Federal Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team and served in the identification efforts at the World Trade Center after 9/11 and in Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. He has lectured extensively in the field of forensic dentistry. Dr. Wood has maintained a private practice in Cloverdale since 1987 and is current chair of the California Dental Political Action Committee.