Forensic artists bring the dead back to life for cold cases

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Credit: University of Southern Florida

TAMPA, Fla.— A group of students at the University of South Florida are bringing the dead back to life.

Specifically, they’re sculpting and creating the faces of unidentified people from cold cases, some of whom have been victims of crimes. The workshop is unique in that the artists are using 3D printing technology to help them create the skulls out of plastic. They fashion clay around the plastic and that results in a more lifelike appearance.

The creations are part of a weeklong class put on by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, Tampa-area law enforcement agencies and the university’s Forensic Anthropology and Applied Science school.

On Friday, the sculptures will be unveiled and the sculptures and information may generate leads for the cold cases.