This author contrasts the criminal justice “system” with other societal systems in regards to accidents and mishaps. Plane crashes are studied much more than wrongful convictions and plea bargains. Seems odd, but remember lawyers and judges cloak themselves with their “rules” and prior cases imposed by their peers.
Who ever said science and law have a common ground of knowledge? Not in this case and others still pending with lawyers arguing guilt is proven by practitioners of their unsubstantiated offerings of “medical certainty.”
DNA Data From 100 Crime Scenes Has Been Uploaded To A Genealogy Website — Just Like The Golden State Killer
John Kunco in Pennsylvania has local and Innocence Project attorneys arguing for his release on May 23. His possible exoneration could bring the number of men released from false science testimony of bitemarkers to 31 cases.
Backstory on Kunco.
Do you wonder how witchcraft and satanic children eating coven stories survive in this era of lies and misdemeanors and wrongful convictions? This article pushes back against what’s coming out of the US WH and DOJ (and some DAs) spiel about forensic reliability.
The government closed the FSS (national forensic science unit) in 2012. Privatizing forensics to commercial vendors resulted, which has led to various large scale scandals.
In a strange coincidence, the UK”S Forensic Regulator published in 2017 some extensive rules for forensic analysts. This article from early 2018 warns privatizing will “inevitably” lead to “failing forensic science” and miscarriages of justice.
Here are the words of the Forensic Regulator herself.
A look at a lay person’s concerns about law enforcement’s reliance on false statements and forensics that’s not good enough for scientific approval, but very useful for gaining convictions.
Bitemarks, lie detectors, hair, partial fingerprints, evidence mishandling, incompetents and fraud.
The interplay of law enforcement and death investigations being under the same roof is a national problem. California is getting a dose of that in the news. It is a problem endemic throughout the US. Elected Coroners qualify with a high school diploma. Sheriffs get appointed via county and state politicians. The only physician Medical Examiners/Coroners are in Ventura, Los Angeles, and San Diego.
Forensic Confusion: ICE testing for age of purported juvenile detainees not done according to its own rules.
Here is another great example of the intersection between forensics and criminal justice. It surely is a mess. These two articles lay out how US Immigration courts are rendering opinions on the chronological age of detainees without completing the requisites contained in their own rule handbook.
Some ICE court judges certainly seem upset about dental ageing from 3rd molars (wisdom teeth) and seem to think “bone ageing” is spurious.
Participating in post-conviction appeals of defendants convicted from the use of bitemark pattern “matching” brought me to a crossroads with my memberships in both the bitemark group (ABFO) and the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS).
The cross-road on the right led to a train wreck, where the ABFO continued to use their debunkable beliefs in microscopic chips and twists of crooked teeth leaving finger-print -like impressions on injured human skin. Their train had run into a ditch due to DNA testing applying its science to overwhelm the ABFO “matching” dogma recorded in criminal cases of false convictions. The ABFO “diplomates” cases are illustrated next.
I hit the brakes at the intersection and quit the ABFO but as yet remain an AAFS member, although its recent renewal of the bitemarkers “certification status” has put a big dent in any thoughts that the AAFS is anything more than a forensic social boys club in the arena of imposing restraints on the bitemark group.
I have taken the road to the left.
Now my job is to educate individual state and federal judges, one-on-one, through the use of affidavits combined with criminal appeals from prison inmates who have spent decades in prison. BTW, all these prisoners are indigent.
Each affidavit I have written, either for an inmate facing life in prison or execution on death row, conflicts strongly with the Prosecutors’ responses about bitemarks as a “science.” Categorically and, as a rather curious example of “group think,” they love it. Their collegial relationship with the bitemarkers has produced a thread common in their Responses to these appellate cases.
Here is a quick look at Prosecutors (i.e. the State) boilerplate beliefs in bitemark identification from an active titled New Jersey v. Fortin :
- The State Response cites legal precedence in US courts as a substitute for advances in scientific standards that post date Fortin (2004). At the time of Fortin, their assertions were merely opinion of private practicing dentists.
- The State Response is silent regarding any scientific support that contradicts the 2009 NAS Report and PCAST analyses of the ABFO. The relevant scientists and legal observers outside the ABFO reject the ABFO methods out-of-hand. The lack of any courts excluding bitemark matching has resulted in changes in Criminal Justices Codes in California.
- The amount of relevant review by scientific groups outweighs the previous cases of bitemark matching being acceptable in court.
- In English Common Law, there once was precedence for condemning witches and soothsayers. Advances in science and social awareness overcame the pre-existing reliance on past outmoded practices by the justice system.
- The ABFO “gold standard” of Guidelines is merely a compendium of past practices of their work. It is not based on empirical studies. The ABFO attempts at such have worked against them.
- The ABFO ( 100 members) demands immunity from oversight by anyone.
- The State’s response misdirects the court from the failure of the ABFO to create any science for the acts they purport to be valid and reliable.
- The research and testing data the ABFO and the State rejects as insufficient for use by the defense is a red herring to mislead the court. The State and the ABFO offer no research to support their practices either at the time of Fortin, or in current practice.