Despite lacking any scientific bases to what they profess to be “scientific,” the new boss of the ABFO bitemark bunch waxes nostalgic about “standing with giants, ” gives lip service to the Tx Forensic Commission and then leaves his membership with this blather about “doing good work.” Talk about missing the point of the “worst year of forensics” for this group.
His wish list: (with some responses to the ABFO membership)
- To restrict ourselves to only bitemarks of the highest evidentiary value. (you can’t even agree on what is a bitemark)
- To be blinded of suspect(s) when doing comparisons. (see supra)
- The same investigator should not document patterned injuries and take suspected biter information. (see supra)
- We need blinded second opinions- not just technical reviews. (see supra)
- We need to be vigilant about bias and do everything in our power to mitigate it. (then shut up about bitemark opinions being admissible in court as “scientific”)
- We need bitemark proficiency testing. ( not: you need validation studies first; and so far you have flunked 3 proficiency studies since 1986 )
- We need to change the requirement that a potential ABFO certification candidate be the primary investigator in a bitemark case in order to satisfy the requirements to become certified. (ABFO candidates still need to “do” 6 bitemark cases to be ABFO eligible. Imagine the damage THAT can produce to defendants and the public’s belief in “justice for all” )
Full message to the ABFO by its president.