#Forensics: #DNA STR MIXture takes a hit in its expanding use by FBI and other police crime labs.

Image result for cart before the horse

From DNA expert Dan Krane (thanks to Gil Sapir).

STRMix was found to be inadmissible in an important federal case ( Gissantaner ) out of the Western District of Michigan last week.  Its implications for STRMix (and the FBI’s increasing reliance on it) make this very likely to be appealed.  But, there is a potential for this to add an important new layer to things like the Daubert and Kelly-Frye standards (e.g. that tests should not be used outside of their validated range, and the relevant scientific community should not be limited to practitioners). Here is the bottom line from the court ruling inadmissibility exists in this particular case. It is telling:

“STRmix software had been in use a mere two years before its application to this case. And it had been in use by the MSP merely three months at the time of the DNA report and the conclusions reached by the MSP analysts—in simple terms, that the 7% contributor was 49 million times more likely to be Defendant than some unknown contributor.16 At that time, and even currently, there are no standards in place governing the development of PGS and its use in forensic DNA analysis.”

More articles (after the “Full Ruling) on how under validated methods are exaggerated (usually by prosecutors’ experts) when they get into criminal courts.

Full Ruling: Gissantaner – strmix inadmissible

 

FBI: DNA lab problems, scandals now presents new training on DNA STR stats

STRMix 2019 presentation about a “collaborative exercise.”

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Forensics: Forensic Dental ageing expert claims his claims of “science” shouldn’t be the only method. Why use it at all?

For years, these dentists have inappropriate claims of high percentages of accuracy to their adult versus juvenile ageing methods which they present in US immigration courts. This WaPo article summarizes how the federal controlled courts and prosecutors continue to use these dentists who are liberally paid to run a 2 minute proprietary and scientifically inaccurate software program which looks at the root development of third molars (wisdom teeth). Their per hour rate averages $500. It is even higher if the dentist evaluates more than one case per hour.

Quotes from 2 dentists show how far apart the opinions of these ageing practitioners are from any relationship with scientific reliability. Take a look. It is important for the children to be safe.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/10/04/ice-asylum-seeker-dental-exam-adult-jail/?wpisrc=nl_mix&wpmm=1

Other articles on this subject.

Forensics: Excuses for using inaccurate dental ageing methods fill this interview with University of Texas adjunct professor Dr. David Senn

Forensics: Unscientific, biased and exaggerated dental ageing in use by dentists hired by ICE

Forensics: Another bogus method from the bitemarkers. Ageing children as adults for ICE

Forensic Confusion: ICE testing for age of purported juvenile detainees not done according to its own rules.

 

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Forensics: Decertified DNA mixture methods affected 1300 convictions in the US.

An in-house DNA mixture program that has been abandoned by the NYCME’s office gets a jaundiced review by an ex-DA judge. Unfortunately, the legal and political barriers to its effect on past convictions is left up to lawyers to consider. It’s all about “weight.”
https://gothamist.com/news/judge-attacks-controversial-dna-software-s-still-used-send-people-prison

Posted in AAFS, costs of wrongful convictions, criminal justice reform, DNA mixtures, DNA profiling, Forensic Science, Forensic science misconduct, human identification | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Forensics: Public familial DNA companies secretly aiding the FBI

Good thread on law enforcement’s expanding use of public corporations who have access to public DNA databases. Customers now worried. But its a business opportunity for one new company.

We should add some convers on false positive or otherwise misleading “matches” assumed to be fact. Who has any oversight for this? Police? Isn’t this Forensic evidence?

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/10/genetic-genealogy-dna-database-criminal-investigations/599005/

Posted in AAFS, CSI, DNA profiling, Forensic crime lab security issues, Forensic Science, human rights violations | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Forensics: let’s hear it for another biased and messed up Jack the Ripper case

This time its the Journal of Forensic Sciences that gets the gong for publishing a one-sided example of fumbled assumptions and disconnected exaggerations abt mitochondrial DNA.
https://www.kxan.com/news/jack-the-ripper-identity-questioned-by-texas-state-research-professor/

Posted in Bad Forensic Science, criminal justice, DNA profiling, Forensic Science, Forensic Science Bias | Tagged | 1 Comment

Forensics: Revealing the effects of politics tainting forensic science

The sociology of police crime labs is thoroughly disclosed in this short article. Max Houck recognizes the 10 year old NAS Report and he offers some improvements. Tell that to the USDOJ. Again.
Posted in AAFS, ABFO, Crime, Crime lab scandal, criminal justice reform, CSI, Perjury by Prosecutors, US Crime labs | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Forensics: Decomp measurements linked to Post mortem interval..

Looking for answers in all the “right” places.
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2589871X19301421
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Michigan Forensics: Legislation to create Forensic Science Commission

These authors have introduced a bill to establish a FSC in the US state of Michigan. The Texas FS Texas commission effectively delisted bitemarks four years ago. In both cases wrongful convictions will be continue to be revealed.
https://www.detroitnews.com/story/opinion/2019/09/16/opinion-michigan-needs-state-based-forensic-science-commission/2291922001/

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Forensics: Botched digital measurements led to 11 years in prison. New trial ordered.

DAs expert used a fancy software program to analyze a robbery vid. He botched it. The perp is short. This man is 6’3″. A jailhouse snitch lied during his trial. The DA was mute during all of it.
https://www.dallasnews.com/news/courts/2019/09/12/texas-man-subject-of-netflix-doc-ordered-released-after-11-years-behind-bars/

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Forensics: Hearings | Hearings & Legislation | House Committee on Science, Space and Technology

Hearings | Hearings & Legislation | House Committee on Science, Space and Technology
— Read on science.house.gov/hearings/raising-the-bar-progress-and-future-needs-in-forensic-science

Best minds in the business. Mostly female. Quite nice.

Posted in AAFS, costs of wrongful convictions, criminal justice, criminal justice reform, CSI, Forensic Science, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment