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Keith Morris, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Ming Hsieh Distinguished Professor of Forensic & Investigative Science

Research Interests 
Dr. Keith Morris' research interests are focused on the interpretation of physical evidence and how multiple types of evidence are interrelated. Bayesian networks are used to model evidence relationships since they allow for general modelling as a basis to understand evidence interpretation. Daubert requirements of admissibility of scientific and technical evidence into court proceedings play an important role in evidence interpretation. Specific emphasis is given to the error rate requirement of Daubert.

Dr. Morris's interest in evidence types is focused upon firearms evidence, ballistics, and latent fingerprint identification, and utilizing systems such as AFIS and IBIS that relate directly to his research focus. These areas are studied from interpretational and fundamental perspectives.

Background

Before coming to WVU, Dr. Morris was the director of the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) system of the South African Police Service. He spent 14 years in the FSL at the bench and managerial levels. He performed casework in the area of trace evidence, precious metal theft, and bombing investigations. He was involved in the examination of the bombing of the Planet Hollywood restaurant in Cape Town in 1998. He received his B.Sc. (Chemistry and Mathematics)(1985), B.Sc. (Honors)(Chemistry)(1986), and Ph.D. (Chemistry)(1990) from the University of Port Elizabeth. He also has a master's degree in Business Leadership (M.BL.)(1997) from the University of South Africa. 

Special Information
In 1991, Dr. Morris was commissioned as an officer in the South African Police Service by the State President, Mr. FW de Klerk. In August 1999, he received the Police Star for Outstanding Service from the Minister for Safety and Security for “outstanding service rendered through exceptional resourcefulness, leadership, and sense of duty.” He was inaugurated as the first Ming Hsieh Distinguished Professorship in Forensic & Investigative Science at West Virginia University in January 2009. He has served on forensic committees sponsored by the National Institute of Justice.