Role of Forensic Interviews Goes before Colorado Supreme Court

The Colorado Supreme Court heard oral arguments this week in a case debating the role of forensic interviews in criminal cases with child victims or witnesses. Public defenders argued that the testimony of the forensic interviewer leads the jury to give too much weight and credibility to the child’s statement, while the State argued that the […]

Why forensic evidence may not be as certain as we’d like to think it is

“According to a growing number of studies, forensic evidence is vulnerable to the same subjectivity that plagues other types of evidence such as eye-witness testimony.” http://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/why-forensic-evidence-may-not-be-as-certain-as-we-d-like-to-think-it-is-1.2451578

Kaye on the DFSC new fingerprint policy

David Kaye writes on his blog here about the U.S. Army’s Defense Forensic Science Center (DFSC) notice on a new policy for expressing associations with latent fingerprints.  This is the revised language to be used to express conclusions: “The latent print on Exhibit ## and the record finger/palm prints bearing the name XXXX have corresponding ridge detail. […]

Justice Department Announces New Accreditation Policies to Advance Forensic Science

“Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates announced today [in this press release] that the Justice Department will, within the next five years, require department-run forensic labs to obtain and maintain accreditation and require all department prosecutors to use accredited labs to process forensic evidence when practicable. Additionally, the department has decided to use its grant […]

MRI Brain Scan Rejected as Evidence In High Profile Case

A judge ruled this week that an MRI brain scan conducted on a defendant in a high profile murder case would not be admissible. Defense attorneys hoped doctors could testify before a jury that the defendant’s brain is markedly different from his peers, suggesting that he has some psychotic disorder. The judge found that the brain scan […]

Grand Rapids changes police policy to no longer routinely take fingerprints from citizens without identification

Police say they will no longer request fingerprints from individuals without identification and will instead only request fingerprints from individuals who raise suspicion, but not to the level to make an arrest. Police also say they will make individuals aware that they are free to decline the request for fingerprints. The police department was taking […]

Revisiting the “Serial Creeper” with Appearance Prediction

In September, we wrote on “The Creeper” who was wrecking havoc by breaking into Miami homes and assaulting or standing over women as they slept. Police also released a sketch of the Creeper, which was commissioned by Parabon NanoLabs using Appearance Prediction technology. The scientific basis for Appearance Prediction technology remains uncertain, but has been applied in cases […]

DNA Evidence of Vomit Trail Questioned At Trial

Police testified at a trial this week in Mt. Oliver, Pennsylvania that DNA evidence found in vomit matched the accused, Deshown Pryor. Prosecutors assert that Pryor killed Jamekia Robinson and while fleeing, vomited, leaving behind his DNA evidence. The defense attorney questioned not that the DNA match was reliable, but whether the vomit actually connected his […]