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Undocumented Border Crosser Deaths in Arizona: Expanding Intrastate Collaborative Efforts in Identification

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Undocumented Border Crosser (UBC) deaths in Arizona are a major issue faced by medicolegal authorities. Currently, the Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner (MCOME) is in possession of over two hundred unidentified individuals, more than half of whom are presumed to be UBCs. The primary goal of this study was to address the growing number of UBC deaths in Maricopa County in order to provide a more comprehensive picture of this important anthropological issue within the state of Arizona. Of the 107 total UBC cases evaluated for the study, the majority were male and age estimates for all individuals were between 15 to 60 years old. Modeled after the recording system established by the Pima County Office of the Medical Examiner, the biographic and geographic data for these cases were entered into a new UBC database at MCOME and later added to the online Map of Migrant Mortality.
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Keywords: Arizona; Maricopa County Office of the Medical Examiner; Undocumented Border Crosser (UBC); forensic anthropology; forensic science; identification

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2017

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