Texas Scrutiny of Bite Mark Evidence

The New York Times reports today on the Texas Forensic Science Commission’s inquiry into the use of bite mark evidence in criminal cases – including review of old cases – and development of “guidelines on whether bite-mark comparisons should have any role in the courtroom.”  The Commission’s recommendations are expected in February 2016.  Steven Mark Cheney, freed after 28 years in prison, based on testimony of a forensic dentist who claimed a high degree of certainty that he left marks on the arm of a murder victim, was dismayed that some testified at the hearing that bite mark comparisons can still be usefully conducted: “I’m grateful that people say they’re sorry, but that doesn’t replace 28 years of my life.

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