Develop Crime Laboratory Skills

  • Implement the use of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations as it relates to the duties of a crime lab technician
  • Articulate the results of forensic analyses appropriately in oral and written forms
  • Use critical thinking to evaluate options and implement solutions to problems encountered in the crime laboratory



DNA Analysis Certificate

Learn to recover DNA profiles from evidence items used in the biology division of crime laboratories.

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Crime Scene Practice Certificate

Gain additional knowledge in crime scene practice through Madonna’s Criminal Justice program.

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Graduate Certificate in Applied Forensic Science Research

Gain advanced research competencies to conduct complex forensic investigations.

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Faculty Bios

Jessica ZarateAssistant Professor, Forensic Science

M.S. National University

B.S. Madonna University

B.H.S. Ferris State University



Jessica Zarate

Ms. Jessica Zarate, MS is currently an assistant professor in the FEPAC accredited undergraduate Forensic Science Program at Madonna University teaching forensic science coursework including impression and pattern evidence. She was a Michigan certified police officer for eight years and is the inventor of the Zar-Pro™ Fluorescent Blood Lifters (US Patent 8,025,852 B2).

She has worked in impression analysis, for over 9 years, including during her time as a Police Officer with the Northville City Police Department when she collaborated with Michigan State Police Northville Forensic Science Laboratory, Latent Print Unit with research and development in the area of impression enhancement.

Her research work is focused within the impression evidence discipline, publishing on a fluorogenic method for lifting, enhancing, and preserving bloody impression evidence, recovering bloody impressions from difficult substrates, including from human skin, and defining methods to create consistent and reproducible fingerprint impressions deposited in biological fluids on a variety of substrates.

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Damon Baker 

B.S. Madonna University


Damon Baker

Damon Baker began working with the Detroit Police Department as a crime scene investigator in 2016, and spent three years processing crime scenes in the city of Detroit.  In August of 2017, he also took on the role of being a test-shot officer, testing firearms for submission into the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN).

In February of 2019, he transferred to the Criminal Intelligence Unit as a crime analyst working in the Real Time Crime Center (RTCC), providing intelligence to officers on scene through Detroit’s Project Green Light, as well as performing intelligence research on suspects and incidents at the request of investigators.  In September of 2020, he was transferred to back to the Detroit Police NIBIN Unit, this time as a crime analyst specializing in intelligence with firearms.  During his time as a NIBIN analyst, he worked closely with the ATF and other local partners to track and help build cases against offenders both in and out of Detroit.  In June of 2021, he took over as the Project Manager for the Detroit Police NIBIN Unit, and now runs the crime analyst team stationed there. 

He brings his crime scene and firearm experience to teach Firearms and Tool Marks during the winter semester.

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