Donna MacgregorForensic Findings

Sergeant, Scientific Section, Forensic Services Branch, Queensland Police Service

  • Qualifications: BSc (Anatomy) 1993, Hons (Forensic Anatomy) 1994, Masters of Science (Forensic Science)

ANYLYSING blood splatter and examining a scene “post-blast” might be confronting for some – but not this UQ Science graduate.

Donna MacGregor is a Sergeant with the Scientific Section of the Queensland Police Service’s (QPS) Forensic Services Branch.  Based at Brisbane’s Roma St headquarters, Donna and her colleagues work to solve some of the city’s most heinous crimes.

Donna, who has a Bachelor of Science in anatomy and Honours in forensic anatomy from UQ, started with the QPS in 2000.  Since, she has gone on to become one of the most highly trained officers in human and forensic osteology (study of bones) in Australia.

Donna says it was her exposure to officers from the Forensic Services Branch during her degree that triggered her interest in working for the police service.

“If I hadn’t gone to UQ, I wouldn’t have met a lot of the officers who are now the bosses in my branch,” she says.

“When I met them and learnt about the interesting work they did I thought, ‘these guys have a pretty good life’.”

While Donna’s work rarely produces a dull moment, she says it is skeletal recoveries and identification that interest her most.

“It’s something unique – only a couple of us in the branch have the knowledge to do it,” she says.

“We can help narrow the remains down to just one or two people on the missing persons register.”

From differentiating between human and animal remains to identifying race, age, sex and stature, Donna’s skills help detectives form positive IDs and solve cases with greater speed and ease.