Carbon dating used forensics

The isotope has always occurred naturally on Earth, formed wherever incoming cosmic rays strike the atmosphere, but some of the current supply also comes from nuclear-weapons tests.

The level fluctuates from year to year, and that means that every given time period has its own carbon-14 signature.

With the help of a mathematical model that linked size with age, they estimated that one sixteen-foot female was at least two hundred and seventy-two years old, and possibly as much as five hundred and twelve years old.

Because it is difficult to establish background carbon-14 levels in the ocean, and because Nielsen and his colleagues didn’t know which part of the ocean the sharks had been born in, the figure was inexact.

The investigators suspected the boy’s mother of having killed the children, but she denied it.

While the victims’ ages were obvious—all were clearly newborns—the police had no way of knowing when the murders had taken place.

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There may be Greenland sharks alive today that were born before Christopher Columbus; the species is not even thought to reach sexual maturity until around a hundred and fifty years of age. The answer likely has to do with a very slow metabolism and the cold waters that they inhabit.

But for now, Nielsen said, it’s yet another mystery.

(There was a particularly huge spike, called the bomb pulse, in the nuke-happy heyday of the fifties and sixties.) Experimenting on cadavers’ lenses, Heinemeier found that he could measure how much carbon-14 they contained and use it to determine the deceased’s date of birth.

Heinemeier’s paper made no mention of Greenland sharks.

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  1. In many cases, context is everything.(1) when a foster parent has sexual contact with his or her foster child, (2) the person is a school employee engaging in sexual acts with a student, and (3) multiple scenarios that include: "The person has, or knowingly causes another person under the age of eighteen to have, sexual contact with another person who is at least sixteen years old but less than eighteen years old and not married to the perpetrator, if the perpetrator is at least sixty months older than the victim, is in a significant relationship to the victim, and abuses a supervisory position within that relationship in order to engage in or cause another person under the age of eighteen to engage in sexual contact with the victim." In part because Overton's case did not meet those criteria, King County prosecutors decided not to press charges against the former UW hoopster.