TX and CA: How Prosecutors ignore the effects of junk forensic science on their convictions.

Jordan copy

CSI forensics seems to be infallible on TV. Not as much in the real world.

Try reading”Bitten by Experts” from Jordan Smith at The Intercept. Its all about the junk.

In the same vein, this article gives a closeup on where the 2013 Forensic Junk Science law in Texas falls short in allowing “new trials” but no “exoneration” in the few cases finally arriving back in appellate court.

The TX legislator who authored the new law explains the political climate that prevented a broader approach which could have permitted findings of “actual innocence” and later compensation for wrongful convictions.

An ex-attorney for the Tx Innocence Project says as a critique of the law:

“The worst thing under this law is that now prosecutors get off easy. They have an excuse and they can say, “Well, I guess it was just those creeps in the lab coats that did it to us this time. Sorry.” That prevents us from ever understanding what really goes on in these cases.”

The attitude of a local DA to this story of Sonia Cacy’s request for a new trial echoes what has been frequently used by prosecutors responding to the junk-in-forensics scandal.

“The current district attorney of the county where Cacy was tried stands by her conviction, rejects her arguments about the scientific evidence, and says there is considerable circumstantial evidence that still points to her guilt.”

Back to “Bitten by Experts.” California is no exception to the “still guilty” claims of NIMBY prosecutors. Its recent forensic junk science law will be tested before the CA Supreme Court on May 3 as the California Innocence Project takes on Attorney General Kamala Harris on the William Richard’s 1997 conviction.

 

 

 

About csidds

Dr. Michael Bowers is a long time forensic consultant in the US and international court systems.
This entry was posted in AAFS, costs of wrongful convictions, Crime lab scandal, criminal justice reform, CSI and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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