Guest Blog by Prof. David A. Harris: Forensic Labs Should Be Separate from Law Enforcement

When the National Academy of Sciences published its landmark report Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward  in February of 2009, most observers quickly saw that it had the potential to shake the forensic science establishment to its core if its recommendations were followed.  Four years on, not enough change has occurred.  […]

“Failed Evidence” – A must read for all interested in making our justice system better

One of the recurring themes of this blog is the consistent call for meaningful changes in the criminal justice system. TheTruthAboutForensicScience.com bloggers Justin McShane and Josh Lee having been highlighting areas of the criminal justice system that desperately need change for several years now. We are not the only ones. In the book “Failed Evidence: […]

A Great Article in American Laboratory

As I have written before and will unfortunately have to keep on writing, forensic science is like the “wild, wild west.” Just like in the bygone days of the wild wild west, in forensic science today there is a lack of the rule of law, some vigilantes, some rough characters who are up to no […]

Thanksgiving…. But still injustice happens

Here is a very good NPR presentation on the state of forensic science. It is worth the read: Scandals Call Into Question Crime Labs’ Oversight by MARIE CUSICK Three years ago, a report from the National Academy of Sciences exposed serious problems in the nation’s forensic science community. It found not only a lack of peer-reviewed science in […]

National Science Foundation Science and Engineering Indicators 2012 paints a grim picture of jurors

Many a time I have scratched my head baffled at juries, prosecutors, and even judges who just seemingly hate science. I am not talking about competing legitimate theories rooted in science, but rather intentional ignorance or flat-out denial in favor of the unsupported or pseudo-scientific. The National Science Foundation just released its findings about scientific […]

Garbage conclusory reports

One of the more frustrating things that criminal defense attorneys run into are garbage conclusory reports. One of the common misperceptions is that the lawyer for the accused gets information from the crime laboratory upon demand. This is not so. What we usually get can best be characterized as garbage conclusory reports. These garbage conclusory […]

Ray Krone talks about the nightmare of innocence at the 2012 ACS Fall meeting (Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law)

On August 20, 2012, the American Chemical Society at its biannual meeting held a special Presidential Seminar called “Innocence! The  Work of the Innocence Project.” It was funded by The McShane Firm, LLC and presented through the Chemistry and the Law Division and the Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law subdivision. At the presentation, were three […]

Steven Barnes talks about the nightmare of innocence at the 2012 ACS Fall meeting (Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law)

On August 20, 2012, the American Chemical Society at its biannual meeting held a special Presidential Seminar called “Innocence! The  Work of the Innocence Project.” It was funded by The McShane Firm, LLC and presented through the Chemistry and the Law Division and the Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law subdivision. At the presentation, were three exonerees. […]

American Chemical Society Science & the Congress Project

The American Chemical Society in conjunction with The Innocence Project held a symposium that was funded by The McShane Firm, LLC entitled “Forensic Science Chemistry and the Law: Innocence! The Work of the Innocence Project” on August 20, 2012 at the ACS National Meeting in Philadelphia. The ACS is continuing to push for legitimate science […]

Raymond Santana talks about the nightmare of innocence at the 2012 ACS Fall meeting (Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law)

On August 20, 2012, the American Chemical Society at its biannual meeting held a special Presidential Seminar called “Innocence! The  Work of the Innocence Project.” It was funded by The McShane Firm, LLC and presented through the Chemistry and the Law Division and the Forensic Science, Chemistry and the Law subdivision. At the presentation, were three exonerees. […]

Readability versus trueness

People mistake readability with trueness all the time. Imagine a full-sized live elephant gets on scale. The scale reads “113 pounds.” Not a single one of us would have any difficulty rejecting that measurement. We intuit that it is wrong. Really wrong. It’s not feasible. It’s not plausible. There is no way it could be. […]