Month March 2017

House Judiciary on Forensics

The House Judiciary Committee held hearings to examine the state of forensic science in the United States.  The transcript is here. Written testimony was submitted as well, from Dr. Victor Weedn, G.W. University, Mr. Matthew Gamette, Lab System Director, Idaho… Continue Reading →

For rankings fans: “Top 5 Junky Forensic ‘Sciences'”

Grits for Breakfast, nom de guerre of astute criminal justice commentator and new Director of the Innocence Project of Texas, offers its thoughts on the five junkiest junk sciences.

Culture of forensic science limits growth

The recent pre-publication draft of the PCAST report on forensic science describes faults and fixes for many forensic disciplines, including DNA, firearms, fingerprints, impression evidence, and bitemarks. Numerous stakeholders have already criticized the report on a variety of points, including… Continue Reading →

A new book on forensic reform

Forensic Science Reform Protecting the Innocent Elsevier, 2017.  ISBN: 978-0-12-802719-6 Edited by Wendy J. Koen and C. Michael Bowers Comparative Bullet Lead Analysis, Max M. Houck Microscopic Hair Comparison, Max M. Houck Arson, John Lentini and Rachel Dioso-Villa Shaken Baby… Continue Reading →

An overview of presumptive and confirmatory testing in the forensic sciences

The Amanda Knox/Raffaele Sollecito case introduced some observers to the uses and misuses of presumptive and confirmatory blood tests. The use of two stages of testing is encountered in at least two forensic disciplines:  testing for body fluids (blood, saliva,… Continue Reading →

Rudin on an “Office of Forensic Science”

A comment on a proposal being considered by the CFSO – draft legislation that would create an Office of Forensic Science within the Department of Justice (here is a link to the draft as of Feb. 14, 2017): Putting an… Continue Reading →

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