Metallurgy Materials Science Engineering Expert Witness

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Metallurgy Materials Science Engineering Expert Witness

Provides Opinion & Testimony In:

Metallurgy, Materials Science, Engineering, Accident, Aircraft, Analytical, Analysis, Arson, Aviation, Automobile, Bicycle, Boat, Bombing, Bullet, Bullet Lead, Civil, Clocks, Wristwatches, Timing Mechanisms, Collapse, Contamination, Corrosion, Court Testimony, Crime Scene, Criminal, Cross Examination, Damage, Data Collection, Data Analysis, Disaster, Engineering, Metallurgical Engineering, Metallurgical, Evidence, Examination, Exhume, Explosion, Fabrication, Failure Analysis, Fire, Food Product Contamination, Forensic, Fracture, Fraud, Headlights, Taillights, Homicide, Identification Marking Restoration, Investigate, Investigation, Investigative, Lampbulbs, Law enforcement, Marine, Maritime, Materials Science, Metal, Metal Failure, Metallurgist, Moot Court, Personal Injury, Product Failure, Product Tampering, Quality Control, Railroad, Sabotage, Serial Number Restoration, Specifications, Tampering, Testimony, Testing, Transcript Review, Transportation Disaster, Welding, Wire Rope, Blast, Mine Disaster, Mining Disaster, Disaster, Tugboat, Tow, Truck, Forensic Evidence, Lab, Weapons, Fire, Explosions, Maritime, Oil Spill


Bachelor of Science, Metallurgy, Case Institute of Technology Master of Arts, Special Studies, George Washington University
Graduate studies, Materials Science & Engineering, University of Virginia

Additional Courses & Symposia

  • Physical Metallurgy, Ohio State University Shaping, Forming of Metals, Ohio State University Engineering Metallurgy, Ohio State University
  • Principles of Failure Analysis, American Society for Metals (ASM) Fractography: Practical Applications in Failure Analysis (ASM) Metallographic Interpretation (ASM)
  • Energy Dispersive X-ray Fluorescence, Kevex Corporation Statistics I, Northern Virginia Community College Statistics II, Northern Virginia Community College
  • Detection and Recovery of Human Remains, FSRTC Calculus I (refresher), Northern Virginia Community College Calculus II (refresher), Northern Virginia Community College
  • Applied Statistics for Engineers and Physical Scientists, Va. Commonwealth Univ.
  • Structure and Properties of Materials, University of Virginia Fastener Characterization by Mechanical & Metallographic Methods Manufacturing Processes & Materials, University of Virginia
  • Applied Electrochemistry, University of Virginia Explosion Effects & Structural Design for Blast

Professional Experience

Battelle Memorial Institute, Research Metallurgist Chase Brass and Copper Company, Plant Metallurgist
National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Research Metallurgist Monarch Aluminum Company, Manufacturing/Production Process Control
U.S. Marine Corps, Platoon Commander, Republic of South Vietnam Federal Bureau of Investigation, Supervisory Special Agent
FBI Laboratory, de facto Chief Forensic Metallurgist Forensic Engineering International, Principal

Court Appearances and Depositions

Testified as an expert witness in 289 local, state and federal criminal and civil matters, in 45 states (excluding Congressional testimonies and grand juries).


Bronze Star with Combat ‘V’, U.S. Marine Corps
2 Crosses of Gallantry, Republic of South Vietnam
20 additional military combat decorations

Numerous letters of commendation, including:
Personal commendation from U. S. Attorney General William French Smith
Three commendations with cash awards, from FBI Director William H. Webster
Two commendations and cash award from FBI Director William S. Sessions

Professional Affiliations

Statistical and Applied Mathematical Sciences Institute (SAMSI) National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE) American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)
American Society for Metals, International (ASM) The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society (TMS) National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Society for Experimental Mechanics (SEM) International Metallographic Society (IMS) American Foundry Society (AFS)
Failure Analysis Society (FAS) 1st Marine Division Association


Referee for Fire Technology, NFPA Editorial Advisor, The Forensic Examiner, ACFEI
Requested by UNSCOM to serve as U.N. Weapons Inspector, Iraq (1998) Editorial Reviewer, National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences

Noteworthy / Sample Cases

  • TWA 800 Aircraft Disaster: Mid-air explosion of flight TWA 800 enroute from New York’s Kennedy Airport to Paris, France, on July 17, 1996.
  • Mid-air Breakup of Missouri Air National Guard F-15C: Crash of F-15C attributable to longeron fatigue failure resulting in nationwide grounding of all F-15A/B/C/D aircraft.
  • Sago Coal Mine Disaster: Complex materials interaction issues relating to methane gas explosion, Sago, W.V., January 2, 2006. Thirteen trapped miners; one survivor.
  • U.S. v. [Blackwater Worldwide personnel]; incident involving Blackwater Personal Security Detail (PSD) in September 2007 escorting convoy of US State Department vehicles en route to meeting in western Baghdad with USAID officials, resulting in17 Iraqi civilian fatalities in Nisour Square, Baghdad.
  • U.S. v. Aafia Siddiqui; Trial of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui for attempted murder with M4 rifle; trial in NYC, NY, from Guantanamo. Terminal ballistics and GSR (gunshot residue) issues from shooting reconstruction: evaluation of wall damage claimed to be bullet holes from high velocity impact of M855 (SS109) projectiles (bullets).
  • BOMBING, Olympic Park: Pipe bomb explosion at Centennial Park, Atlanta, GA, during 1996 Olympics.
  • Charles Stuart: National notoriety and local racial strife in Massachusetts resulting from incident where Stuart and his pregnant wife were shot in their vehicle; Stuart called “911” from his vehicle while wounded. Notoriety resulted in TV movie “Good Night, Sweet Wife” (CBS) and several books.
  • U.S. v. Walter Leroy Moody: Defendant sentenced to 7 life terms plus 400 years for mailing package bombs that killed U.S. Appellate Court Judge Robert S. Vance and civil rights attorney Edward Robinson.
  • EXPLOSION, USS Iowa: explosion resulting in numerous sailor fatalities during training operation.
  • Susan B. Anthony silver dollar recovery. Developed technique for U.S. Mint to recover thousands of mis-minted silver dollars embedded in lucite for collectors.
  • PRODUCT TAMPERING; U.S. v. Joseph Earl Meling, product tampering of SUDAFED capsules; defendant convicted of contaminating capsules with sodium cyanide to murder his wife, and of causing the deaths of several consumers purchasing SUDAFED.
  • FOOD PRODUCT TAMPERING; nationwide alert for contaminated Girl Scout cookies.
  • TRAIN DERAILMENT, Panama City, FL; 129 car derailment releasing chlorine gas which killed 8 people. Incident featured in Newsweek and numerous other news periodicals.
  • EXPLOSION in Wilberg Coal Mine, Orangeville, UT; coal mine explosion of such severity that it took approximately two years to recover bodies of 27 miners who died in the mine.
  • Scaffold Collapse, Willow Island, WV; wire rope failure that caused collapse of scaffold used in construction of nuclear facility, resulting in 51 deaths.
  • U.S. v Buck Walker & U.S. v. Stephanie Stearns; “hippie” couple alleged to have murdered Malcolm (“Mac”) and Eleanor (“Muff”) Graham on Palmyra Island in the South Seas. Skull found by beachcomber on deserted beach in the South Seas 12 years later, depicted on the cover of And The Sea Will Tell by Vincent Bugliosi (author of Helter Skelter and prosecutor of Charles Manson); also subject of popular TV movie “And The Sea Will Tell” (CBS).
  • Lt. Colonel William Higgins, Commander of U. N. Forces, kidnapped and killed, Beirut, Lebanon.
  • Achille Lauro Cruise Ship; terrorism aboard cruise ship.
  • Judge Alcee Hastings; impeached Federal judge accused of misconduct and obstruction of justice. Tensile testing and failure analysis of purse strap of Judge Hastings’ purse.
  • TRAIN DERAILMENT, Mobile, AL; “Sunset Limited” derailment, worst in U.S. history, resulting in the deaths of 47 passengers on September 23, 1993.
  • ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER; Oil spill, San Juan, Puerto Rico, January 7, 1994, involving motorized vessel (M/V) Emily S. (tug) and barge Morris J. Berman, with 662,000 gallons of #6 fuel oil.
  • UNABOM; Sixteen package bombs sent to/opened by various technical personnel.
  • BOMBING, Oklahoma City, OK; bombing of Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995.
  • PATENT INFRINGEMENT Litigation: Brunswick v. U.S. Army; materials design of radar- scattering camouflage netting used by U.S. Army in Kuwait-Iraq conflict. Devised unique testing technique to determine spatial relationship of critical component fibers for U.S. Justice Department.
  • WELDMENT FAILURE resulting in tragic auto accident due to roadway debris from 50-lb. steel plate falling from commercial truck under tow, nearly decapitating victim driver in vehicle behind tow, September 2000, causing massive I-95 traffic stoppage. Cause: poor maintenance and defective weldment on battery compartment of truck under tow.
  • FIRE at Dogwood Elementary School, Reston VA; Elementary school fire resulting in total destruction of school ($17 million loss), November 2000. Unsolved by fire investigators for months. Forensic metallurgical assistance provided to Fairfax County Fire & Rescue attributed cause of fire to defective ceiling-hung clock.
  • COLLAPSE OF BUCKET TRUCK BOOM ARM; bucket truck boom arm, used to trim and clear tree limbs from vicinity of electrical power lines in Warrenton, Virginia, collapsed during use, November 2000. Failure attributable to defective manufacturing technique (weldment).
  • BICYCLE FATALITY; Moped conversion bike, with caliper hand brakes, became uncontrollable when brakes were applied, causing rider to be ejected over handlebars, resulting in rider fatality. Loss of control attributable to improper bicycle modification.
  • VEHICULAR FATALITY; Driver stopped on Interstate 95 with mechanical problems was killed by commercial truck while awaiting roadside assistance. Metallurgical examinations confirmed that disabled vehicle’s lights, including emergency flashers, were incandescent and visible at time of truck impact.
  • CORROSION: Premature condenser tubing failures. Well-known construction contractor experienced through-wall corrosion of stainless steel condenser tubing within one year of construction for utility client in Colombia, South America. Three metallurgical entities disagreed as to cause, majority concluding microbiologically induced corrosion (MIC). Indisputable determination of cause: improper heat treatment of tubing, not MIC.
  • CORROSION: Determination of cause and fault for metal building roof corrosion, installed one year earlier; Wilmington, NC.
  • CORROSION: Determination of cause & fault for metal building roof corrosion, Annandale, VA.
  • CORROSION: Determination of cause & fault for multi-million dollar power generating trailers for large-scale emergency power, Wheeling, IL.
  • CORROSION: Determination of cause & fault for multi-million-dollar firing range automatic target system failures installed one year earlier for FBI Quantico training facility.
  • CORROSION: Authentication of disputed origin of historical artifact: “six-shooter” owned by leader of last famous outlaw gang in the U.S.: the ‘Bob Dalton Gang’.
  • CORROSION: Numerous cases in marine and industrial environments, including the environmental disaster at Escambron Beach, Puerto Rico, mentioned above, where corrosion played integral role in sequence of disastrous events.
  • CORROSION: Determination of cause & fault for pervasive corrosion of expensive paper testing laboratory instruments for well-known paper manufacturer.
  • EXPLOSION FAILURE of chamber structure used for demilitarization processes at Army Research Laboratory (ARL), Aberdeen Proving Grounds (APG), Aberdeen, MD.
  • TRAJECTORY ANALYSIS: Terminal ballistics reconstruction analysis of military engagement (shooting) in jungle/rain forest by Philippine Army near Kananga, Leyte, P.R., November 15, 2010, where over 245 military bullets (5.56 mm M193 in M-16 rifles) were expended. Victims of mistaken identity were unarmed and engaged in scientific research, including renowned botanist, Dr. Leonardo Co.
  • FASTENER FAILURE ON YACHT: Fatigue failure of fastener on “Destiny” yacht attributable to deficient design, manufacturing, construction, installation practice.
  • MISCELLANEOUS: Work ladders; hunter’s tree stand; wire rope & cables; fire sprinkler system corrosion; foundry & casting matters; obliterated serial number & identification marking restorations; oil drilling equipment; fasteners (nails, screws, staples, bolts, nuts, etc.); missile guidance system components (radar waveguides); aircraft, boat and ship corrosion; aviation components; false claims act; fraud against the government; automobile accidents & components (fractures, failures, speedometer, headlights, taillights, etc.); timing mechanisms (clocks, watches, etc.); manufacturing processes; statistical process control; metal building corrosion; mine disasters; transport disasters (maritime, aviation, rail); quality control; standards & specifications; welding; fires & explosions; M4 launch and penetration mechanics with M855 (SS109); terminal ballistics; gunshot residue (GSR); bullets; firearms; toolmarks; body armor; apple brandy alembic in distilling process; operational failures/explosions of firearms during user use (aka, ‘kaBooms’).
    Various cases featured on “America’s Most Wanted”, “Unsolved Mysteries”, “60 Minutes”, “20/20”, “Dateline”, “Primetime”, “Eye to Eye”, “48 Hours”, “Forensic Files”, “FBI Files”, “The Discovery Channel”, “The Learning Channel”, CNN, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), and National Geographic Channel.

Speaking Engagements

  • ASM, COMS (Central Ohio Metallographic Society), Columbus, OH Ohio State University
  • Welding & Testing Technology 8th Annual National Conference (31 professional societies, Knoxville, TN) ASM, Philadelphia, PA (Liberty Bell Chapter)
  • MTI (Metal Treating Institute), Secaucus, NJ ASM, Hartford, CT
  • ASM, Bethlehem, PA ASM, New Haven, CT ASM, Nashua, NH ASM, York, PA
  • ASM, Charlotte, NC ASM, Cincinnati, OH
  • AWS (American Welding Society), York, PA University of Pittsburgh
  • ASNT (American Society for Nondestructive Testing), ASM, Hampton, VA AWS, ASM, Houston, TX
  • ASM, Peoria, IL
  • AWS, Los Angeles, CA AWS, Baltimore, MD AWS, Hampton, VA ASM, Baltimore, MD ASM, Washington, DC ASM, Johnson City, TN
  • ASM, South Bend, IN (Notre Dame Chapter) AWS, Houston, TX
  • AIME (American Institute of Mechanical Engineers), AWS, ASM, Beaumont, TX SCTE (Society of Carbide and Tool Engineers), ASM, Philadelphia, PA
  • ASM, Portland, OR ASM, Greensboro, NC
  • ASQC (American Society for Quality Control), ASM, AIME, Worcester, MA Metal Treating Institute International Convention, Washington, DC
  • ASM, Baton Rouge, LA
  • Florida International Arson Seminar, 46th Annual, Orlando, FL AWMI (Association of Women in the Metal Industries), Marlboro, MA AWS, Washington, DC
  • SAMPE (Society for Advancement of Materials and Processing Engineers), SCTE, ASM, San Diego, CA Florida International University
  • ASM, AWS, Miami, FL
  • MFPG (Mechanical Failures Prevention Group), 45th Session Symposium AICE (American Institute of Carbide Engineers), ASM, AIME, Kansas City, MO ASM, Grand Rapids, MI
  • ASM, Battle Creek, MI
  • ASM, AWS, ASNT, Rahwah, NJ
  • ASM, Oak Ridge, TN
  • ASM, South Bend, IN (Notre Dame Chapter) Roger Williams College
  • ASME, ASM, East Providence, RI
  • ASM, Bethlehem, PA (Lehigh Valley Chapter)
  • COMS, ASM, ASNT, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
  • ASM, AES (American Electroplaters Society), ASQC, Springfield, MA ASM International, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • TMS (The Metallurgical Society), New Haven, CT AWS, ASM, Beaumont, TX
  • AWS, ASM, Houston, TX AWS, Tampa, FL
  • Case Alumni Association, Washington, DC
  • National Thermal Spray Convention (NTSC) ’93, Anaheim, CA 26th Annual IMS Symposium, Charleston, SC
  • ASM, Dayton, OH
  • ASM, Central Carolinas Chapter, Raleigh, NC SWE, ASM, Peoria, IL
  • AWMI, Cleveland, OH
  • AFS (American Foundrymen’s Society), ASM, Saginaw, MI
  • U. S. Attorney’s Office, Dept. of Justice, San Diego, CA AWS, San Diego, CA
  • ASM, Milwaukee, WI AWMI, Baltimore, MD AWS, Tysons Corner, VA
  • ASM, Indianapolis & Muncie, IN
  • National Engineers Week, Akron, OH: AIIA, ASM, ASCE, ASDPE, ASME, ASHE, IEEE, SME, NAWIC,
  • ASQC, ASHRAE, AIChE, ACESS, Univ. of Akron, Kent State Univ.
  • ASM, MIT Faculty Club, Cambridge, MA AWMI, Dallas, TX
  • ASM, Baltimore, MD
  • University of Virginia (graduate seminar) AWMI, Minneapolis, MN
  • AWMI, St. Louis, MO
  • Oklahoma City University School of Law
  • Florida Assoc. of Criminal Defense Lawyers (FACDL), Palm Beach, FL Wisconsin Assoc. of Criminal Defense Lawyers (WACDL), Madison, WI
  • American University, Washington School of Law, Washington, D.C. (guest lecturer) CLE: “Life In The Balance” Seminar, NLADA, Memphis, TN
  • CLE: North Carolina Association of Trial Lawyers (NCATL), Raleigh, NC. Joint Statistics Meeting (JSM 2004), Toronto, Canada
  • CLE: NLADA Conference, Washington, DC.
  • CLE: NACDL Midwinter Meeting & Seminar, New Orleans, LA CLE: NCATL Conference, Sunset Beach, NC.
  • CLE: CPD, Copper Mountain, CO CLE: TCDLA, Dallas, TX (co-director)
  • Georgetown University School of Law, Washington, D.C. (guest lecturer) CLE: DCACDL, Washington, D.C.
  • CLE (judges only): “Science in the Courtroom”, Judicial Institute of Maryland, Annapolis, MD CLE: TCDLA, Houston, TX (co-director)
  • CLE: NCAJ, Raleigh, N.C.
  • CLE: WISBA, Milwaukee, WI
  • CLE (invitation only): Cardozo Law School, NYC, NY Metropolitan Public Defender’s Office, Louisville, KY CLE, TCDLA, Houston, TX (Oct. 2016)
  • CLE, NACDL, Las Vegas, NV (May 2017) FAPI (Feb. 2021)


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