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Just Science Podcast: Just Footwear Forensics to Further Investigations

NCJ Number
Laura Matson
Date Published
October 2023

This Just Science podcast episode provides the audio and transcript of a discussion on the value of providing footwear investigation leads.


This third episode of Just Science Podcast’s Case Studies season features Laura Matson, an Advanced latent Print and Footwear Examiner at the Wisconsin State Crime Laboratories. The discussion addresses the difficulties of detecting and collecting footwear impressions from crime scenes, which leads to the underutilization of footwear evidence. In the episode, the podcasters discuss the value of footwear investigative leads, noting that while traditional footwear analysis compares unknown impressions to a known shoe, footwear investigative leads provide the makes and models of shoes that may have created unknown impressions. Matson describes how footwear investigative leads can accelerate an investigation, and how her team is developing a footwear database for her agency; she also provides advice for other agencies hoping to further utilize footwear evidence.