Two Techniques Used by NYC Chief Medical Examiner’s Office to Analyze DNA Mixtures Discontinued

The New York Times reports that two techniques used by the office of the NYC Chief Medical Examiner to analyze DNA mixtures have been discontinued. The lab had a national reputation for using techniques surpassing those used by the FBI, analyzing samples from jurisdictions around the country for about $1,000 per sample. Although multiple former state forensics officials have criticized the validity of these methods, the lab claims that the change was motivated by a desire to adopt more modern technologies, rather than concerns over the accuracy of the methods. A group of defense attorneys is petitioning the NY State Inspector General’s Office to review the lab’s practices, potentially triggering an avalanche of litigation related to convictions based on the disputed methods.

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