Dr. Shamiram "Shami" Arslanian is a nationally recognized expert in forensics, especially the analysis of gunshot residue (GSR). She is blonde with blue eyes and of Armenian ancestry on her father's side. She was born and raised in Florida but currently lives in Ossining, NY.
Her educational background is impressive. She received a B.S. in Engineering from Harvard as well as a degree from Berklee College of Music. She had attended both schools at the same time. She later earned a M.A. degree in Chemical Engineering from MIT and a PhD. in Criminiology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice where she now teaches and conducts research.
In addition to her academic work, she has hosted or appeared on numerous television shows including one called "Chemically Dependent." She is very likable, savvy about the media, and an outstanding expert witness.
In 2007 Jerry Vincent had contacted her regarding the case of Walter Elliot, and she agreed to testify. When Vincent was murdered and Mickey Haller took over the case, she became the central witness for the defense. She testified that the GSR found on Elliot was the result of transfer from Eli Wyms who had fired his rifle 94 times and then been placed in Sheriff's car Four-Apha. Eight hours later, Elliot was placed in the same seat in car Four-Alpha, at which time the GSR from Wyms was trasferred to Elliot's hand and clothes.