Our Experience

I am a professional aerial photograph interpreter and expert witness with more than 40 years of experience analyzing aerial photographs. I have studied images on black and white, true color and color infrared (false color) photographic emulsions from vertical, oblique and panoramic perspectives. I have also analyzed multi-sensor imagery from plan position indicator (PPI) and synthetic aperture radars, emitted infrared, laser and ultra violet remote sensing systems. For more than five years I have used remote sensing image processing software to analyze images with either supervised or unsupervised classification programs. As part of my working experience I understand the technologies related to photo interpretation, i.e., photogrammetry, thematic mapping, surveying and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). In 1971 and 2001 I was presented awards from the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing for professional contributions to the Society.

My photo interpretation experience is summarized below in three categories: Natural Resources Management, Military/Intelligence and Environmental/Legal applications.

Natural Resources Management

I received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Forestry from the University of New Hampshire. In the fall of 1953 I began graduate studies in wildlife management at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. I was involved in the initiation of a graduate program of developing a methodology for thematically mapping the forests and land use in Massachusetts using 1951-52 aerial photographs. During two years as a student and an additional year in post graduate work I developed a statewide classification system, minimum sized typing units, delineation transfer methods onto base maps and compilation of forest and land use area data on a municipality, county and statewide basis. During this period I personally spent over 3,000 hours analyzing photographs stereoscopically to determine species, height and density of forest types, urban boundaries and activity status of agricultural land.

During the 1970’s, while employed by Autometric-Raytheon Company and Resource Mapping Systems, Inc. I undertook extensive forest type mapping projects for the Bureau of Indian Affairs on Indian reservations in the western part of the US; Forest mapping projects included Northern Cheyenne, Crow, Wind River, Rocky Boy’s, Colville and San Carlos Apache Reservations. I also did extensive wetland resource inventory projects in the northeastern United States during this same period. These projects included the wetlands in the Maryland part of the Chesapeake Bay and Dukes, Nantucket and Barnstable county-wide inventories in Massachusetts. Watershed specific inventories were done in the Upper Charles and Nashua River Watershed and regional groups of towns on the North Shore and South Shore of Massachusetts.


Based on my extensive photo interpretation experience from graduate school I was able to enlist in the Navy as a pre-designated photo intelligence officer. Upon completion of Officer Candidate School in Newport, RI and commissioning, I spent part of my active duty tour as a radar intelligence officer in a Heavy Attack Squadron and the remaining part as an aerial photograph interpretation instructor at the Naval Intelligence School in Washington, D.C. Upon release from active duty, I continued to serve in the Naval Reserve for a period of 20 years, retiring with the rank of Captain in 1980. During this period I worked in a number of photo interpretation billets developing encyclopedic intelligence for Fleet Intelligence Centers. The last five years in the program were spent in Production Head, Executive Officer and Commanding Officer positions.

During most of my Naval Reserve career I was employed by Autometric-Raytheon Company, a high technology firm performing research and development on overhead reconnaissance systems for the Department of Defense and National Intelligence Agencies. As a Group Manager and Senior Scientist, I analyzed a wide variety of multi-sensor imagery for both tactical and strategic applications.


During the last sixteen years I have worked on more than forty cases for which I used aerial photographic information to support land use litigation. Expert testimony was provided in and/or depositions were given on eleven cases. Brief descriptions of selected cases are presented below:

Charles George Landfill, A Superfund Site in Tyngsboro, MA
Law Firm: Gaston Snow and Ely Bartlett

Collected aerial photographs for 13 different dates to monitor the development of the landfill over a 35 year period. Analyzed changes and provided incremental volume estimates for periods between photo coverages.

Cohasset Heights Landfill, Cohasset, MA
Law Firm: Moehrke, Mackie & Shea

Collected aerial photographs to support a case in which a landfill operator was being accused of contaminating a municipal well with sodium chloride. The photographs supported the claim that the contamination occurred well before the landfill was in operation as evidenced by open road salt storage and stressed vegetation.

Wychmere Harbor Adverse Possession, Harwich, MA
Law Firm: Moehrke, Mackie & Shea

Neighbors to the owners of Thompson’s Clam Bar in Harwich made claim to a hedge which shielded their property from Wychmere Harbor. In an attempt to accurately define their property boundary, the owners of the Clam Bar had their property surveyed, the hedge removed and a fence put in its place. The neighbors claimed that they owned the hedge through continuous, notorious and open maintenance for over twenty years. I collected and analyzed vertical and oblique aerial photographs to show the condition, growth and maintenance of the hedge over time. The neighbors lost the hedge ownership issue but retained visual access to the harbor by being allowed to walk on the roof of the Clam Bar boathouse which was adjacent to their property.

Grandfathered Zoning, Dorchester, MA
Law Firm: Moehrke, Mackie & Shea

Collected and analyzed land use maps and archived aerial photographs to support a continued land use contention. The case is still ongoing.

Adverse Possession, Cohasset, MA
Law Firm: Hill and Barlow

Collected and analyzed archived aerial photographs to assist in resolution of a property boundary dispute.

Norwood PCB Superfund Site, Norwood, MA
Law Firms(s): Foley, Hoag and Eliot, Boston, MA

Morgan, Lewis and Bockius, Washington, D.C.

Collected and analyzed aerial photographs taken over a 40 year period to assist industrial clients in reaching equitable liability with the federal government as principal responsible parties.

Sullivan’s Ledge Superfund Site, New Bedford, MA
Law Firm: Morgan, Lewis and Bockius, Washington, D.C.

Collected and analyzed aerial photographs to assist an industrial client in reaching equitable liability as principal responsible party.

Macon, GA; County vs. Power Company
Law Firm: Sell and Melton, Macon, GA

Collected and analyzed vertical and oblique aerial photographs to resolve issues concerning historical placement of utility poles and maintenance/ownership rights-of-way.

Boston, MA; Adverse Possession/Right-of-way Issue
Law Firm: Wysocki & Slattery, Attorneys at Law, Inc., Boston, MA

Collected and analyzed vertical aerial photographs to help resolve issues concerning right-of-way usage and parked vehicles.

Pittsfield, MA; City of Pittsfield vs. General Electric Corporation
Law Firm: Bernstein, Cushner & Kimmell, P.C., Attorneys at Law, Boston, MA

Analyzed vertical aerial photographs to determine the historical sequence of events relative to a series of landfill operations.