This deserves a special blog post this morning.
A new protector of forensic science integrity has emerged into public view. His rhetoric is familiar and attacks the op-ed I reposted last week from two researchers involved with forensic statistics and the National Academies of Science who wrote a news piece article which garnered alot of media attention.
On his blog, and once again, legitimate forensic science reform discussion turns into personal accusations of:
“fabricated narrative constructed by frustrated defense attorneys, grant-seeking academics, and justice reform activists who’ve gone largely unchallenged.”
The author continues later with this…
“Make no mistake, the 2009 report by the National Academy of Sciences, as well as the National Commission on Forensic Science (NCFS), both referenced by Kafadar and Mazza, became institutionalized animations of the fictional narrative.”
This responding article’s author’s short article joins the micro-pantheon of forensic experts who don’t think first nor research the data before they start writing about wrongful convictions and the pristine case history of forensic science within those cases. His hyperbole exudes absolutes and generalities such as …….
He goes on………
“Using Faulty Forensic Science, Courts Fail the Innocent”) demand more research in forensic science while ignoring one of the most significant studies on forensic science and erroneous convictions ever conducted.”
“Forensic science errors were listed at the bottom of the reasons for wrongful convictions.”
He doesn’t have the academic wherewithal to provide a link to the original op-ed published by Live Science.
His thesis study list is composed of one 2012 article. Also not cited. A quick web search reveals a 2013 summary of a 2012 article by a Jon Gould Ph.D. It is titled “Study reveals 10 factors in wrongful convictions.”
Here are his “ten factors.”
10 Factors Identified in Wrongful Convictions
- State death penalty culture/state punitiveness
- Strength of prosecution’s case
- Prosecution withheld evidence (Brady violation)
- Forensic evidence errors
- Strength of defendant’s case
- Age of defendant
- Criminal history of defendant
- Intentional misidentification
- Lying by non-eyewitness
- Family witness testified on behalf of defendant
uhh, forensic science is not at the bottom.
In my closing, the 325 exoneration (mostly by DNA exclusion) cases litigated by the Innocence Projects are NOT fiction. Nor were they solely caused by ‘ineffective assistance of [defense] counsel.”