More judge-like delusions about error rates in forensics not being necessary.

This time it is in Australia. It does mentions that bitemarks are now outlawed Down Under? Now how did THAT happen? I havent heard a peep abt it.

https://www.smh.com.au/national/csi-not-so-scientific-doubt-cast-on-veracity-of-forensic-evidence-20190816-p52hq9.html

Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Bitemarks, CSI, Forensic Science, Forensic Science Bias, junk forensic science | Leave a comment

Flawed forensics and weak-kneed judges. Boilerplate arson experts, of course, claim absolute accuracy. A judge buys it

The judge below is a good guy, the Honorable Harry T. Edwards.

Just another chapter in how judges can’t get away from looking at changes and evolution in forensics (this time its fire science) in the most restrictive sense via improper legal reasoning and by saying that”unsettled” forensics means that old school experts are still credible. Some one should tell these blokes that there is no Supreme Court equivalent in the world of forensics. Here’s a prime example: The bitemarkers (mentioned in this article as well) are still certified by the American Academy of Forensic Sciences.

Here’s a quote from a LA Superior Court judge in this recent arson-based habeas corpus hearing.

In November, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge William C. Ryan ruled that the new flashover evidence was insufficient to win Parks a new trial because the experts cannot agree on its significance. “The world of fire science and fire investigation is a complex area rife with differing opinions and contentious debates,” Ryan wrote.

https://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-humes-forensic-evidence-20190113-story.html

It has been 10 years since the National Academy of Forensic Sciences put out its report on forensics and its failures and discrepancies. The  man below ( who co-chaired this effort, is the Honorable Harry T. Edwards), talks about the events since 2009. Here’s a bit from the NAS findings:

The report not only exposed the paucity of scientific research to support forensic methods, it also detailed some dubious practices in crime laboratories, the absence of rigorous certification requirements and robust performance standards for practitioners, and the failure of forensic experts to use standard terminology in reporting on and testifying about the results of forensic investigations. 

Click on Judge Edwards to read his 2019 perspective on the 10 years since NAS “Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward.”

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Texas loves its executions but………………………………………………

 

…………..the sometimes nefarious and commonly exaggerated forensic opinions prosecutors continue use to convict has little effect on the lofty judges who never took a science class after 12th grade. Their denials of legitimate claims of unfair criminal convictions is the theme of a man’s upcoming execution date in Texas.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/crime-law/2019/08/17/did-faulty-science-bad-testimony-bring-larry-swearingen-brink-execution/?noredirect=on

Here is another example of how CA prosecutors pursue a retrial against Kim Long based on nothing but forensic flim-flam.

https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/category/flawed-justice-podcast/

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A New Solution to Countering Bad Science in Forensics | Lab Manager

Aussie study follows up on the unacceptable “ad hoc” nature of 30 different crime lab methods. They also demand for forensic science to become more open. Even DNA has befuddled courts into accepting “proprietary secrets” regarding crime lab software.
— Read on www.labmanager.com/news/2019/08/a-new-solution-to-countering-bad-science-in-forensics

https://csidds.com/2019/07/30/forensics-corp-trade-secrets-dominates-rules-of-evidence-in-criminal-courts/

Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Bitemarks, criminal justice reform, CSI, DNA mixtures, DNA profiling, forensic testimony, police crime labs, US Crime labs | Leave a comment

Blood spatter analysis (i.e. BPA) theories contradict physics and scientific research. Study reveals serious lack of university-level involvement in this police-adopted method.

Is anyone suprised? The spatterists still are throwing pig blood against walls and clothing. This study debunks their “velocity” of impact/force blood spatter paradigms.

Kudos to The Innocence Project’s Sarah Chu for her comments in this NOVA article.

Read some BPA vocabulary which generally allows only one explanation of causation.

Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Bite Marks, Bitemarks, criminal justice reform, CSI, Forensic Science Bias, junk forensic science, US Crime labs

Forensic Imaging and Comparison Debate Centers on Expertise of Objects in the Image

A lawyer in the UK takes on an important aspect of forensics. The discussion is a bit  nebulous, and focuses on the topic of people identifying objects and people captured on digital media. I suppose old fashioned crime scene photography is a precursor to some of this, although the author doesn’t bring it into the discussion.   He does mention “artefacts” once. He also takes the Forensic Regulator to task for “overreaching.” I’d prefer a POV that emphasizes more collaboration since he does admit that some experts’ opinions “have been in error.”

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2589871X19301329?utm_campaign=STMJ_1564068058_TOPA_TOPOTR&utm_medium=SPPC&utm_source=TW&dgcid=STMJ_1564068058_TOPA_TOPOTR&utm_campaign=MCRED_HMS_TW_Forensics&sf216408449=1

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Forensic bias dangers from police interactions

Notables discuss the interface between police and anyone examining crime scene evidence. Especially those folks working police crime labs. Recent cases of experts being influenced by police theories certainly highlights this as creating cognitive bias. It is very hard to unring ideas and conclusions brought into an ongoing forensic exam.

Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Bite Marks, Bitemarks, costs of wrongful convictions, Crime, Crime lab scandal, criminal justice, CSI, Dr. Michael West, Forensic crime lab security issues, Forensic Science Bias | Leave a comment

Forensics: Gun Stores in Allen Texas

 

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Forensics: Many in denial. Error perceptions amongst forensic practitioners

This is just the abstract. Im getting really raw having to pay big bucks to get journal articles.

Reading any bitemarker’s trial testimony easily confirms this research of 183 “practicing forensic analysts.” The quest for perfection seems to drive many to just assume they are always perfect.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0379073819303007#!

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Junk science vs DNA leads to law suit for compensation

All this began with a “match” of one hair made during the heyday of this now discredited FBI crime fighting method.

http://www.journalgazette.net/news/local/indiana/20190801/man-sues-claiming-wrongful-conviction

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