Since 1980, there have been over 250,000 recorded unsolved homicides in the United States, the number of missing persons and unidentified remains has been described as “the nations’s silent mass disaster”. There appears to be a lack of funding and support for any forensic research and law enforcement training, without these it seems that the number of unsolved homicides will only continue to grow.
In this VICE special we see how scientists at the Institute for Forensic Anthropology & Applied Sciences at the University of South Florida are looking to change all of that through their work at USF’s Facility for Outdoor Research and Training (FORT). Located here is a “body farm”, a place where scientists and law enforcement officials can come together to exchange knowledge about how bodies decompose in Florida’s subtropical environment. The goal is to create new processes to solve some of the nation’s cold cases.