Forensic Science in Court

Challenges in the Twenty First Century

Author: Donald Hon. Shelton, Chief Judge

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

ISBN: 1442201894

Category: Law

Page: 196

View: 5001

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Forensic Science in Court explores the legal implications of forensic science—an increasingly important and complex part of the legal system. Judge Donald Shelton provides an accessible overview of the legal issues, then examines the strengths and limitations of various kinds of forensic science, including DNA, fingerprints, handwriting, hair, bite marks, tool marks, firearms and bullets, fire and arson investigation, and bloodstain evidence. Case studies illustrate the issues and their application in depth.

Forensic Science in Court

Challenges in the Twenty-first Century

Author: Donald E. Shelton

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Pub Incorporated

ISBN: 9781442201880

Category: Law

Page: 183

View: 2972

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"You couldn't find a better source for grasping the issues confronting the field of forensic science today than this book. As a trial judge, Donald E. Shelton has observed the legal process from its most critical perspective, so who better than a `gatekeeper' to guide us?"---Katherine Ramsland, DeSales University; author of Beating the Devil's Game: A History of Forensic Science and Criminal Investigation "In this highly readable book, Judge Shelton vividly illustrates that all too often forensic evidence does not meet the test of scientific validity. This is essential reading for lawyers, judges, jurors, investigators, policymakers, and citizens who care about their court system."---Nancy S. Marder, Chicago-Kent College of Law "This book is a very readable, entertaining, concise, and enlightening account of the history of the use of forensic science evidence in criminal trials. This book is a valuable resources for lawyers, judges, and students. I highly recommend it."---Thomas K. Clancy, director, National Center for Justice and the Rule of Law, University of Mississippi school of Law Forensic Science in Court explores the legal implications of forensic science---an increasingly important and complex part of the justice system. Judge Donald E. Shelton provides an accessible overview of the legal issues, from the history of scientific evidence in court, to "gatekeeper" judges determining what evidence can be allowed, to the "CSI effect" in juries. The book examines the strengths and limitations of various kinds of forensic science, including DNA, fingerprints, handwriting, hair, bite marks, tool marks, firearms and bullets, fire and arson investigation, and bloodstain evidence. Case studies help bring issues to life and show how forensic science has been used, both successfully and not, in real-world situations.

Forensic Science in Court

Challenges in the Twenty-first Century

Author: Donald E. Shelton

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Pub Incorporated

ISBN: 9781442201873

Category: Law

Page: 183

View: 1771

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Judge Donald Shelton provides an accessible overview of the legal issues, from the history of evidence in court, to "gatekeeper" judges determining what evidence can be allowed, to the "CSI effect" in juries. The book describes and evaluates various kinds of evidence, including DNA, fingerprints, handwriting, hair, bite marks, tool marks, firearms and bullets, fire and arson investigation, and bloodstain evidence --

Forensic Science in Court

The Role of the Expert Witness

Author: Wilson Wall

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 9780470743331

Category: Law

Page: 176

View: 9082

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Forensic Science in Court: The Role of the Expert Witness is a practical handbook aimed at forensic science students, to help them prepare as an expert witness when presenting their evidence in court. Written in a clear, accessible manner, the book guides the student through the legal process and shows them how to handle evidence, write reports without ambiguity through to the more practical aspects of what to do when appearing in court. The book also offers advice on what to expect when working with lawyers in a courtroom situation. An essential text for all students taking forensic science courses who are required to take modules on how to present their evidence in court. The book is also an invaluable reference for any scientist requested to give an opinion in a legal context. · Integrates law and science in an easy to understand format · Inclusion of case studies throughout · Includes straightforward statistics essential for the forensic science student · An invaluable, practical textbook for anyone appearing as an expert witness in court · Unique in its approach aimed at forensic science students in a courtroom environment

Forensic Science Under Siege

The Challenges of Forensic Laboratories and the Medico-Legal Investigation System

Author: Kelly Pyrek

Publisher: Elsevier

ISBN: 9780080471075

Category: Law

Page: 568

View: 6301

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Forensic science laboratories' reputations have increasingly come under fire. Incidents of tainted evidence, false reports, allegations of negligence, scientifically flawed testimony, or - worse yet - perjury in in-court testimony, have all served to cast a shadow over the forensic sciences. Instances of each are just a few of the quality-related charges made in the last few years. Forensic Science Under Siege is the first book to integrate and explain these problematic trends in forensic science. The issues are timely, and are approached from an investigatory, yet scholarly and research-driven, perspective. Leading experts are consulted and interviewed, including directors of highly visible forensic laboratories, as well as medical examiners and coroners who are commandeering the discussions related to these issues. Interviewees include Henry Lee, Richard Saferstein, Cyril Wecht, and many others. The ultimate consequences of all these pressures, as well as the future of forensic science, has yet to be determined. This book examines these challenges, while also exploring possible solutions (such as the formation of a forensic science consortium to address specific legislative issues). It is a must-read for all forensic scientists. Provides insight on the current state of forensic science, demands, and future direction as provided by leading experts in the field Consolidates the current state of standards and best-practices of labs across disciplines Discusses a controversial topic that must be addressed for political support and financial funding of forensic science to improve

Crime Scene to Court

The Essentials of Forensic Science

Author: Peter C White

Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry

ISBN: 1847550657

Category: Education

Page: 474

View: 8233

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Forensic science has been variously described as fascinating, challenging and even frightening. If you have only a vague concept of what forensic science is, this book will provide the answer. Aimed at non-scientists, or those with limited scientific knowledge, Crime Scene to Court covers all three main areas of an investigation where forensic science is practised, namely the scene of the crime, the forensic laboratory and the court. Coverage includes details of how crime scene and forensic examinations are conducted in the United Kingdom, the principles of crime scene investigations and the importance of this work in an investigation, and courtroom procedures and the role of the expert witness. The latest methods and techniques used in crime scene investigation and forensic laboratories are reported, cases are presented to illustrate why and how examinations are performed to generate forensic evidence and there is a bibliography for each chapter which provides further material for those readers wishing to delve deeper into the subject. This revised and updated edition also includes coverage on changes in professional requirements, the latest developments in DNA testing and two new chapters on computer based crimes and Bloodstain Pattern Analysis. Ideal for those studying forensic science or law, the book is intended primarily for teaching and training purposes. However, anyone with a role in an investigation, for example police, crime scene investigators or indeed those called for jury service, will find this text an excellent source of information.

Forensic Evidence in Court

Evaluation and Scientific Opinion

Author: Craig D. Adam

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1119054419

Category: Law

Page: 336

View: 2415

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The interpretation and evaluation of scientific evidence and its presentation in a court of law is central both to the role of the forensic scientist as an expert witness and to the interests of justice. This book aims to provide a thorough and detailed discussion of the principles and practice of evidence interpretation and evaluation by using real cases by way of illustration. The presentation is appropriate for students of forensic science or related disciplines at advanced undergraduate and master's level or for practitioners engaged in continuing professional development activity. The book is structured in three sections. The first sets the scene by describing and debating the issues around the admissibility and reliability of scientific evidence presented to the court. In the second section, the principles underpinning interpretation and evaluation are explained, including discussion of those formal statistical methods founded on Bayesian inference. The following chapters present perspectives on the evaluation and presentation of evidence in the context of a single type or class of scientific evidence, from DNA to the analysis of documents. For each, the science underpinning the analysis and interpretation of the forensic materials is explained, followed by the presentation of cases which illustrate the variety of approaches that have been taken in providing expert scientific opinion.

Forensic Evidence in Court

A Case Study Approach

Author: Christine Beck Lissitzyn

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781594603709

Category: Law

Page: 389

View: 8795

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The text will cover the use of forensic evidence at trial through expert testimony as well as court challenges to many types of forensic evidence. The case study is the 1973 murder of Penney Serra in New Haven, Connecticut, which remained a cold case until 1997, when Ed Grant was identified based on a fingerprint match and subsequently convicted. The text examines forensic evidence in the Grant trial, including fingerprint, DNA, blood spatter and eyewitness identification. It also examines trial strategy, handwriting testimony, polygraph, and exonerations based on newly-discovered DNA.

Forensic Testimony

Science, Law and Expert Evidence

Author: C. Michael Bowers

Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 0123972604

Category: Law

Page: 296

View: 6289

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Forensic Testimony: Science, Law and Expert Evidence—favored with an Honorable Mention in Law & Legal Studies at the Association of American Publishers' 2015 PROSE Awards—provides a clear and intuitive discussion of the legal presentation of expert testimony. The book delves into the effects, processes, and battles that occur in the presentation of opinion and scientific evidence by court-accepted forensic experts. It provides a timely review of the United States Federal Rules of Evidence (FRE) regarding expert testimony, and includes a multi-disciplinary look at the strengths and weaknesses in forensic science courtroom testimony. The statutes and the effects of judicial uses (or non-use) of the FRE, Daubert, Kumho, and the 2009 NAS Report on Forensic Science are also included. The presentation expands to study case law, legal opinions, and studies on the reliability and pitfalls of forensic expertise in the US court system. This book is an essential reference for anyone preparing to give expert testimony of forensic evidence. Honorable Mention in the 2015 PROSE Awards in Law & Legal Studies from the Association of American Publishers A multi-disciplinary forensic reference examining the strengths and weaknesses of forensic science in courtroom testimony Focuses on forensic testimony and judicial decisions in light of the Federal Rules of Evidence, case interpretations, and the NAS report findings Case studies, some from the Innocence Project, assist the reader in distinguishing good testimony from bad

Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States

A Path Forward

Author: National Research Council,Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences,Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics,Policy and Global Affairs,Committee on Science, Technology, and Law,Committee on Identifying the Needs of the Forensic Sciences Community

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309142393

Category: Law

Page: 348

View: 7939

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Scores of talented and dedicated people serve the forensic science community, performing vitally important work. However, they are often constrained by lack of adequate resources, sound policies, and national support. It is clear that change and advancements, both systematic and scientific, are needed in a number of forensic science disciplines to ensure the reliability of work, establish enforceable standards, and promote best practices with consistent application. Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward provides a detailed plan for addressing these needs and suggests the creation of a new government entity, the National Institute of Forensic Science, to establish and enforce standards within the forensic science community. The benefits of improving and regulating the forensic science disciplines are clear: assisting law enforcement officials, enhancing homeland security, and reducing the risk of wrongful conviction and exoneration. Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States gives a full account of what is needed to advance the forensic science disciplines, including upgrading of systems and organizational structures, better training, widespread adoption of uniform and enforceable best practices, and mandatory certification and accreditation programs. While this book provides an essential call-to-action for congress and policy makers, it also serves as a vital tool for law enforcement agencies, criminal prosecutors and attorneys, and forensic science educators.

Science in Court

Author: Michael D. A. Freeman,Helen Reece

Publisher: Ashgate Pub Limited

ISBN: 9781840140392

Category: Law

Page: 206

View: 7648

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Containing essays from the leading international thinkers, this book critically evaluates the relationship between law and science. Science plays an ever-increasing part in the development of legislation and the adjudication of cases. Its limitations and its value are explored in these essays which discuss issues of methodology and evidence.

Interpreting Evidence

Evaluating Forensic Science in the Courtroom

Author: Bernard Robertson,G. A. Vignaux,Charles E. H. Berger

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 111849248X

Category: Medical

Page: 214

View: 7200

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This book explains the correct logical approach to analysis of forensic scientific evidence. The focus is on general methods of analysis applicable to all forms of evidence. It starts by explaining the general principles and then applies them to issues in DNA and other important forms of scientific evidence as examples. Like the first edition, the book analyses real legal cases and judgments rather than hypothetical examples and shows how the problems perceived in those cases would have been solved by a correct logical approach. The book is written to be understood both by forensic scientists preparing their evidence and by lawyers and judges who have to deal with it. The analysis is tied back both to basic scientific principles and to the principles of the law of evidence. This book will also be essential reading for law students taking evidence or forensic science papers and science students studying the application of their scientific specialisation to forensic questions.

Introduction to Forensic DNA Evidence for Criminal Justice Professionals

Author: Jane Moira Taupin

Publisher: CRC Press

ISBN: 143989910X

Category: Law

Page: 192

View: 2865

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The use of DNA profiling in forensic cases has been considered the most innovative technique in forensic science since fingerprinting, yet for those with limited scientific knowledge, understanding DNA enough to utilize it properly can be a daunting task. Introduction to Forensic DNA Evidence for Criminal Justice Professionals is designed for nonscientific readers who need to learn how to effectively use forensic DNA in criminal cases. Written by a forensic scientist world renowned for her expertise in clothing examination, the book provides a balanced perspective on the weight of DNA evidence. Going beyond a simple explanation of the methodology, it arms attorneys and other criminal justice professionals with knowledge of the strengths and limitations of the evidence, including the danger in relying on DNA statistical probabilities in the determination of guilt. The book covers the most common DNA methods used in criminal trials today—nuclear DNA short tandem repeat (STR) techniques, mitochondrial DNA, and Y-STR profiling. It helps prosecutors know when to emphasize DNA evidence or proceed with trial in the absence of such evidence. It assists defense lawyers in knowing when to challenge DNA evidence and perhaps employ an independent expert, when to focus elsewhere, or when to secure the advantage of an early guilty plea. By imparting practical and theoretical knowledge in an accessible manner, the book demystifies the topic to help both sides of the adversarial system understand where DNA evidence fits within the context of the case.

DNA Technology in Forensic Science

Author: National Research Council,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Commission on Life Sciences,Committee on DNA Technology in Forensic Science

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 9780309185585

Category: Science

Page: 200

View: 724

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Matching DNA samples from crime scenes and suspects is rapidly becoming a key source of evidence for use in our justice system. DNA Technology in Forensic Science offers recommendations for resolving crucial questions that are emerging as DNA typing becomes more widespread. The volume addreses key issues: Quality and reliability in DNA typing, including the introduction of new technologies, problems of standardization, and approaches to certification. DNA typing in the courtroom, including issues of population genetics, levels of understanding among judges and juries, and admissibility. Societal issues, such as privacy of DNA data, storage of samples and data, and the rights of defendants to quality testing technology. Combining this original volume with the new update--The Evaluation of Forensic DNA Evidence--provides the complete, up-to-date picture of this highly important and visible topic. This volume offers important guidance to anyone working with this emerging law enforcement tool: policymakers, specialists in criminal law, forensic scientists, geneticists, researchers, faculty, and students.

Inside the Cell

The Dark Side of Forensic DNA

Author: Erin Murphy

Publisher: Nation Books

ISBN: 1568584709

Category: Social Science

Page: 400

View: 2833

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Josiah Sutton was convicted of rape. He was five inches shorter and 65 pounds lighter than the suspect described by the victim, but at trial a lab analyst testified that his DNA was found at the crime scene. His case looked like many others—arrest, swab, match, conviction. But there was just one problem—Sutton was innocent. We think of DNA forensics as an infallible science that catches the bad guys and exonerates the innocent. But when the science goes rogue, it can lead to a gross miscarriage of justice. Erin Murphy exposes the dark side of forensic DNA testing: crime labs that receive little oversight and produce inconsistent results; prosecutors who push to test smaller and poorer-quality samples, inviting error and bias; law-enforcement officers who compile massive, unregulated, and racially skewed DNA databases; and industry lobbyists who push policies of “stop and spit.” DNA testing is rightly seen as a transformative technological breakthrough, but we should be wary of placing such a powerful weapon in the hands of the same broken criminal justice system that has produced mass incarceration, privileged government interests over personal privacy, and all too often enforced the law in a biased or unjust manner. Inside the Cell exposes the truth about forensic DNA, and shows us what it will take to harness the power of genetic identification in service of accuracy and fairness.

Forensic Ecology Handbook

From Crime Scene to Court

Author: Julie Roberts,Nicholas Márquez-Grant

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1118374045

Category: Medical

Page: 272

View: 8945

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The analysis of plants, insects, soil and other particulates from scenes of crime can be vital in proving or excluding contact between a suspect and a scene, targeting search areas, and establishing a time and place of death. Forensic Ecology: A Practitioner’s Guide provides a complete handbook covering all aspects of forensic ecology. Bringing together the forensic applications of anthropology, archaeology, entomology, palynology and sedimentology in one volume, this book provides an essential resource for practitioners in the field of forensic science, whether crime scene investigators, forensic science students or academics involved in the recovery and analysis of evidence from crime scenes. Forensic Ecology: A Practitioner’s Guide includes information not only on the search, location, recovery and analysis of evidence, but includes sampling strategies for diatom analysis, pollen and soils samples and entomology and provides guides for good practice. Each chapter provides background information on each discipline and is structured according to pre-scene attendance (what questions should the scientist ask when receiving a call? What sort of preparation is required?), scene attendance (including protocols at the scene, sampling strategies, recording), scientific examination of analysis of the evidence up to the stages and guidelines for witness statement and presenting evidence in court. The book is written by specialists in all fields with a wealth of experience who are current forensic practitioners around the world. It provides an essential and accessible resource for students, academics, forensic practitioners and police officers everywhere.

Expert evidence in criminal proceedings in England and Wales

Author: Great Britain: Law Commission

Publisher: The Stationery Office

ISBN: 9780102971170

Category: Law

Page: 211

View: 6198

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This project addressed the admissibility of expert evidence in criminal proceedings in England and Wales. Currently, too much expert opinion evidence is admitted without adequate scrutiny because no clear test is being applied to determine whether the evidence is sufficiently reliable to be admitted. Juries may therefore be reaching conclusions on the basis of unreliable evidence, as confirmed by a number of miscarriages of justice in recent years. Following consultation on a discussion paper (LCCP 190, 2009, ISDBN 9780118404655) the Commission recommends that there should be a new reliability-based admissibility test for expert evidence in criminal proceedings. The test would not need to be applied routinely or unnecessarily, but it would be applied in appropriate cases and it would result in the exclusion of unreliable expert opinion evidence. Under the test, expert opinion evidence would not be admitted unless it was adjudged to be sufficiently reliable to go before a jury. The draft Criminal Evidence (Experts) Bill published with the report (as Appendix A) sets out the admissibility test and also provides the guidance judges would need when applying the test, setting out the key reasons why an expert's opinion evidence might be unreliable. The Bill also codifies (with slight modifications) the uncontroversial aspects of the present law, so that all the admissibility requirements for expert evidence would be set out in a single Act of Parliament and carry equal authority.

Forensic Science Reform

Protecting the Innocent

Author: Wendy J Koen,C. Michael Bowers

Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 012802738X

Category: Law

Page: 392

View: 1158

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Forensic Science Reform: Protecting the Innocent is written for the nonscientist to help make complicated scientific information clear and concise enough for attorneys and judges to master. This volume covers physical forensic science, namely arson, shaken baby syndrome, non-accidental trauma, bite marks, DNA, ballistics, comparative bullet lead analysis, fingerprint analysis, and hair and fiber analysis, and contains valuable contributions from leading experts in the field of forensic science. Offers training for prosecuting attorneys on the present state of the forensic sciences in order to avoid reliance on legal precedent that lags decades behind the science Provides defense attorneys the knowledge to defend their clients against flawed science Arms innocence projects and appellate attorneys with the latest information to challenge convictions that were obtained using faulty science Uses science-specific case studies to simplify issues in forensic science for the legal professional Offers a detailed overview of both the failures and progress made in the forensic sciences, making the volume ideal for law school courses covering wrongful convictions, or for undergraduate courses on law, legal ethics, or forensics

The Handy Forensic Science Answer Book

Reading Clues at the Crime Scene, Crime Lab and in Court

Author: Patricia Barnes-Svarney,Thomas E. Svarney

Publisher: Handy Answer Books

ISBN: 9781578596218

Category: Medical

Page: 400

View: 1967

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Covering the fundamentals, science, history, techniques, laboratory analysis, the latest research, and controversies, The Handy Forensic Science Answer Book: Reading Clues at the Crime Scene, Crime Lab and in Court provides detailed information on crime scene investigations. It looks at the science of law enforcement, how evidence is gathered, processed, analyzed, and viewed in the courtroom, and more. From the cause, manner, time of a death, and autopsies to blood, toxicology, DNA typing, fingerprints, ballistics, tool marks, tread impressions, trace evidence, arson, accident investigations, computer crimes, criminal profiling, and much, much more are addressed with answers to over 950 common questions, such as When were fingerprints first used to identify a criminal? Can a forensic expert look at skeletal remains and tell whether the person was obese? How fast does a bullet travel? How was a chemical analysis of ink important in the conviction of Martha Stewart? What types of data are often retrieved from a crime scene cellphone?.

Statistics and the Evaluation of Evidence for Forensic Scientists

Author: Colin Aitken,Franco Taroni

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 047001122X

Category: Mathematics

Page: 540

View: 7821

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The first edition of Statistics and the Evaluation of Evidence for Forensic Scientists established itself as a highly regarded authority on this area. Fully revised and updated, the second edition provides significant new material on areas of current interest including: Glass Interpretation Fibres Interpretation Bayes’ Nets The title presents comprehensive coverage of the statistical evaluation of forensic evidence. It is written with the assumption of a modest mathematical background and is illustrated throughout with up-to-date examples from a forensic science background. The clarity of exposition makes this book ideal for all forensic scientists, lawyers and other professionals in related fields interested in the quantitative assessment and evaluation of evidence. 'There can be no doubt that the appreciation of some evidence in a court of law has been greatly enhanced by the sound use of statistical ideas and one can be confident that the next decade will see further developments, during which time this book will admirably serve those who have cause to use statistics in forensic science.' D.V. Lindley