Monthly Archives: November 2015

The mashup of science and pseudo-science in forensics explained quite well

Illustration by Oliver Munday Im not one to delve deeply into the epistemology of science, but having been given this book review ( quote: “what makes science science?”) article to read from the New Yorker, I think this next quote … Continue reading

Posted in AAFS, criminal justice reform | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Forensic Toxicology and death investigation. Ex-Coroner did a shabby job.

Another example of the effects of inconsistent and non-standardized management of questionable deaths  in the US. Most coroners are not trained medical professionals. “Kane County Coroner changes cause of death from overdose to undetermined.” Events of note: the prior coroner … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Battling pathologists. Standing up or kneeling? Arms moving or not? Forensic doubt = self defense?

The Facebook Slaying in Florida.  One pathologist performed the autopsy. Another pathologist looked at the photographs and documents much later. Knife versus gun. They don’t agree on reconstructing the victim’s posture at time of receiving 8 rounds of .380 ammo. No mention … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Seeks Forensic Info

PCAST Forensic Science Questions PCAST consists of 20 of the nation’s leading scientists and engineers, appointed by the President to provide direct advice to him and the White House on important matters of science and technology. PCAST has recently begun … Continue reading

Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Bitemarks, criminal justice, criminal justice reform, CSI, Forensic Science | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Inability to deliver timely DNA testing for ID gets Coroner some bad publicity and a grieving family

This is about a missing elderly man and a male skeleton found months later. My assumption is that he may have either worn dentures (no natural teeth) with no patient name labeled placed in the dentures ( mandatory in some … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Privately held DNA software “TrueAllele” taking hits from Criminal Defense lawyers

Considering the furor over DNA mixture analysis now raging in the media/courts, arguments about keeping secret prosecutors’ laboratory methods appear to be doomed at some point in this process of advancing legal discovery for criminal defendants. Unless a court wants … Continue reading

Posted in criminal justice reform, CSI | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Bitemarkers use child abuse cases to defend their continuing acceptance in courts

[ the top picture shows 6 categories (1 to 6) of increasing bitemark severity types starting at the top left and progressing to the bottom right. My comments below will refer to this picture.] At Monday’s hearing of the Texas … Continue reading

Posted in criminal justice reform, wrongful convictions | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Law enforcement agencies have invented a number of the techniques, including blood-spatter and bite-mark analysis.

Explanations on how the intersection of legal “yes or no” determinations of guilt and its interpretation of forensic “science” certainties is a train wreck. From the Boston Review; “Forensic Psuedoscience.” A quote from the BR “Law is a poor vehicle … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Kosinski on Criminal Justice reform and false evidence

By Radley Balko As part of its push for criminal justice reform, the Charles Koch Institute (yes,that Charles Koch) has just posted a series of interviews with Alex Kozinski, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. … Continue reading

Posted in costs of wrongful convictions, criminal justice, criminal justice reform | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

U of AZ Science Professor posits bitemark clique as “junk” on eve of TX hearing

UA Professor Tackles Faulty Courtroom Science [Image] Steven Mark Chaney recently walked out of a Dallas courtroom after his 1987 conviction was overturned because of discredited bite-mark testimony. (Photo: Innocence Project) Today, the Texas Forensic Science Commission hears more testimony … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment