Image of crime scene tape
Image of crime scene tape

True Crime & Forensic Pathology with Patricia Cornwell & Dr. Jonathan Hayes

Yumi Kimura from Yokohama, JAPAN, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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About This Episode

How can you get away with murder? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Chuck Nice explore forensic pathology, autopsies, and crime scene science with medical examiner and author Jonathan Hayes, featuring an interview with international best-selling crime writer and author of Autopsy, Patricia Cornwell. 

How do you interpret wounds in a gruesome murder? Why do we need to know exactly how people die? We discover what it’s like working in a morgue, the path to becoming a medical examiner, and how to deal with facing death on a daily basis. Find out CSI’s impact on the field of forensics and some of Jonathan’s experiences in the field. What do crime investigation shows get wrong?

Could you do forensic pathology in space? We discuss a scene in Patricia’s new book: What would be different about a crime scene in space? Could space forensics someday become its own specialty? You’ll learn about the science behind how the body decays, rigor mortis, and whether a medical examiner could really commit the perfect murder.

How are bodies stored? How long does it take to perform an autopsy? Is there a future for artificial intelligence in forensic pathology? Could robots someday conduct investigations? What would happen if you buried someone on the moon? Would they decompose normally? All that and more on another episode of StarTalk!

Thanks to our Patrons Victor Beaton, GamerSaSsS, Heather Rae, Kasheia Williams, Tim Woodward, Charles Anglesey, and Mike Smalling for supporting us this week.

NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

In This Episode

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