Sounds from the Dark Side
Selections from the Case Book of a Forensic Speech and Audio Scientist
Peter French [+–]
J.P. French Associates and University of York
This semi-autobiographical account of the author’s career takes the reader through some of the most prominent and high-profile criminal cases internationally in which forensic voice and audio analysis was used in tracking down suspects or as evidence in court. The cases include serial killings, crimes against humanity, genocide, acts of terrorism and enforced ‘harvesting’ of human organs. Those involved span the entire social spectrum from the most socially and economically disadvantaged to famous sports personalities, heads of nations and royal families.
The recordings in these cases were analysed in different ways and for different purposes and so exemplify the range of tasks a forensic speech and audio scientist is asked to carry out. These include:
speaker profiling – analysis of an unknown criminal voice to provide investigators with clues about the background of the person they should be looking for;
speaker comparison – comparing criminal voices with known suspects to assist with identification or elimination;
content analysis – establishing what was said in noisy or otherwise difficult criminal recordings;
authenticity examinations – to establish whether a recording is genuine or edited, and when it was made;
sound source analysis – to determine what a recorded non-speech sound is (a gunshot, a car backfiring, or a door banging?);
acoustic reconstructions of crime scenes – to ascertain what could be heard by people at various points on the scene at the time of the crime.
The book concludes with a discussion of the forensic challenges posed by recent advances in speech technology artificial intelligence and voice cloning.
The book will appeal to two readerships: professional speech and audio scientists and those with a more general interest in true crime and its detection.
£24.95 / $32.00
£75.00 / $100.00