Murray, Raymond C (World of Forensic Science)
7/2/1929br /> AMERICAN
Over the course of his career, Raymond C. Murray turned his knowledge of geology into a critical tool for crime investigators. He worked for several years as a geology professor before also becoming a forensic geologist, aiding law enforcement officers and testifying in criminal cases. Murray has written numerous books on the subject, including Forensic Geology, the first textbook of its kind.
Murray had an early interest in geology. He attended the University of Wisconsin, Madison, earning a master's degree in geology in 1952 and a doctorate in geology in 1955. After graduation, he was hired by Shell Development Company in Houston, Texas, to work as a manager of geology research, a position he held for the next eleven years. But ultimately, Murray decided to move into academia, taking an associate professor position at the University of New Mexico in 1966.
In 1967, Murray was offered a job at Rutgers University, and became the chairman of the geology department there. It was at Rutgers where Murray first became involved in forensic geology. A Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agent had come to Murray with soil involved in a crime investigation, and asked Murray for help. From that point forward, Murray continued his work as a professor, but also expanded his knowledge and expertise into the world of forensic geology. In 1975, along with fellow Rutgers professor John Tedrow, Murray published Forensic Geology: Earth Sciences and Criminal Investigation. It was the first textbook written on the science. A revised edition was published in 1991.
Murray left Rutgers in 1977 to take a position at the University of Montana. There he continued his work in forensic geology, often testifying as an expert witness and lecturing at crime laboratories around the world. He retired from the University of Montana in 1996, devoting more time and attention to his private forensic geology practice. In 2004, Murray wrote and published his latest book on the subject, Evidence from the Earth: Forensic Geology and Criminal Investigation. In this text he details the many ways geologists have been able to analyze forensic data and reveal soil and rock evidence.
SEE ALSO Careers in forensic science; Soils.