Russell Smith Speaks to Bristol University’s Criminal Justice Society

Two weeks ago, Russell Smith, Regional Manager of Hawkins’ Bristol Office, had the opportunity to speak to Bristol University’s Criminal Justice Society in their Law School building.

Russell’s talk covered the progression of his career from working within the Police to then investigating numerous cases for Hawkins as a forensic engineer. Russell’s expertise includes fires, fraud, marine and shipping incidents, though this talk was primarily focused on forensic evidence, the use of forensic science in criminal investigations, and the role of the expert witness in the criminal justice system. This included a discussion on how expert witnesses are often appointed by both the prosecution and defence in criminal cases.

The audience was a mixture of law and criminology students. They were interested in how an expert witness maintains impartiality and ensures their duty to the court is achieved, as well as in the forensic landscape over the last 30 years, with changes from the Forensic Science Service to the numerous private sector providers.

Hawkins hopes to inspire students from science, engineering, law and criminal justice fields to learn about how an expert witness is a crucial part of a thorough forensic investigation.

Russell Smith and Love Engman

Russell Smith (left) with Love Engman, president of Bristol University’s Criminal Justice Society

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