The Questioned Document Section provides forensic support to local, state and federal law enforcement agencies by conducting forensic examinations on evidence collected during an investigation. It is made up of only one forensic scientist in the Topeka laboratory and is the only American Board of Forensic Document Examiner (ABFDE) Certified Scientist in the four state area.
Its main focus is to process alleged forged documents to determine authorship, origin or authenticity. Other important examinations:
- Examine machine generated documents to determine the source
- Examine papers and inks
- Physical matches of such things as pieces of automotive parts, duct tape, torn papers, stamps, etc.
Handling and Submission of Evidence
When handling an item of evidence, always wear gloves. Handle the item in places where the item is not usually handled. Packaging material may protect the item from damage, but it also can damage indented writings. If possible, limit the movement of the evidence inside the package. If an item has been processed by the contributing agency, please note this on the evidence custody receipt (ECR) when submitting.
The original item of evidence should always be submitted if at all possible. If submitting crime scene photographs and/or images, please indicate the specific images that are to be examined.
Known Writings (exemplars) of suspects, victims or other individuals should always be submitted for comparison. These known writings can include previous letters to family members, notes, homework, and exemplar booklets. These should be submitted as separate items on the ECR.
This is accomplished through written reports that contain results of examinations and technical information relating to the evidence and by providing expert testimony concerning information and opinions contained in the reports.
If you have any questions on a specific case or if we can assist you in any way, please do not hesitate to contact the KBI Document Section at the following laboratory:
KBI Topeka Laboratory
For more on information relating to handwriting analysis see these links:
The American Board of Forensic Document Examiners, Inc. (ABFDE)