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Full-Text Articles in Evidence

Table Of Contents, Seattle University Law Review Sep 2019

Table Of Contents, Seattle University Law Review

Seattle University Law Review

No abstract provided.


What Do Snowmobiles, Mercury Emissions, Greenhouse Gases, And Runoff Have In Common?: The Controversy Over "Junk Science", Linda A. Malone Sep 2019

What Do Snowmobiles, Mercury Emissions, Greenhouse Gases, And Runoff Have In Common?: The Controversy Over "Junk Science", Linda A. Malone

Linda A. Malone

No abstract provided.


Technology Comes To The Courtroom, And . . ., Fredric I. Lederer Sep 2019

Technology Comes To The Courtroom, And . . ., Fredric I. Lederer

Fredric I. Lederer

No abstract provided.


Scientific Evidence - An Introduction, Fredric I. Lederer Sep 2019

Scientific Evidence - An Introduction, Fredric I. Lederer

Fredric I. Lederer

No abstract provided.


Remedying Wrongful Convictions Through Dna Testing: Expanding Post-Conviction Litigants’ Access To Dna Database Searches To Prove Innocence, Kayleigh E. Mcglynn Feb 2019

Remedying Wrongful Convictions Through Dna Testing: Expanding Post-Conviction Litigants’ Access To Dna Database Searches To Prove Innocence, Kayleigh E. Mcglynn

Boston College Law Review

Forensic science is used as evidence in criminal cases regularly. Recently, however, scientists have criticized several commonly used forensic methods that are unreliable, scientifically invalid, and have contributed to wrongful convictions. In contrast, DNA testing, which is reliable and valid, is a powerful resource for exonerating wrongfully convicted individuals. Congress and all fifty states have enacted statutes providing access to post-conviction DNA testing. Only nine states, however, have enacted statutes granting post-conviction litigants access to another important resource—law enforcement DNA database searches. Even though Congress amended the federal post-conviction DNA testing statute to provide access to DNA database searches ...


Table Of Contents, Seattle University Law Review Feb 2019

Table Of Contents, Seattle University Law Review

Seattle University Law Review

No abstract provided.


Cabining Judicial Discretion Over Forensic Evidence With A New Special Relevance Rule, Emma F.E. Shoucair Oct 2018

Cabining Judicial Discretion Over Forensic Evidence With A New Special Relevance Rule, Emma F.E. Shoucair

Michigan Law Review

Modern forensic evidence suffers from a number of flaws, including insufficient scientific grounding, exaggerated testimony, lack of uniform best practices, and an inefficacious standard for admission that regularly allows judges to admit scientifically unsound evidence. This Note discusses these problems, lays out the current landscape of forensic science reform, and suggests the addition of a new special relevance rule to the Federal Rules of Evidence (and similar rules in state evidence codes). This proposed rule would cabin judicial discretion to admit non-DNA forensic evidence by barring prosecutorial introduction of such evidence in criminal trials absent a competing defense expert or ...


The Uk Forensic Science Regulator: A Model For Forensic Science Regulation?, Carole Mccartney, Emmanuel N. Amoako Aug 2018

The Uk Forensic Science Regulator: A Model For Forensic Science Regulation?, Carole Mccartney, Emmanuel N. Amoako

Georgia State University Law Review

The use of an array of scientific techniques and technologies is now considered customary within criminal justice, with technological developments and scientific advancements regularly added to the crime investigator’s arsenal. However, the scientific basis, reliability, and fallibility of the application of such “forensic science” (and the resulting scientific evidence) continues to come under intense scrutiny. In response to apparently irremediable problems with the quality of scientific evidence in the United Kingdom (UK), the government created the role of “Forensic Science Regulator” in 2007.

The introduction of a regulator was intended to establish quality standards for all forensic science providers ...


The First Amendment Case For Public Access To Secret Algorithms Used In Criminal Trials, Vera Eidelman Aug 2018

The First Amendment Case For Public Access To Secret Algorithms Used In Criminal Trials, Vera Eidelman

Georgia State University Law Review

As this Article sets forth, once a computerized algorithm is used by the government, constitutional rights may attach. And, at the very least, those rights require that algorithms used by the government as evidence in criminal trials be made available—both to litigants and the public. Scholars have discussed how the government’s refusal to disclose such algorithms runs afoul of defendants’ constitutional rights, but few have considered the public’s interest in these algorithms—or the widespread impact that public disclosure and auditing could have on ensuring their quality.

This Article aims to add to that discussion by setting ...


Georgia State Law Review Symposium Keynote Address: Uncovering Forensic Flaws - An Outside Perspective, Spencer S. Hsu Aug 2018

Georgia State Law Review Symposium Keynote Address: Uncovering Forensic Flaws - An Outside Perspective, Spencer S. Hsu

Georgia State University Law Review

This transcript is a reproduction of the Keynote Address by Spencer Hsu at the 2017–2018 Georgia State University Law Review Symposium — From the Crime Scene to the Court room: The Future of Forensic Science Reform — on April 6, 2018.

Spencer Hsu is an investigative reporter at the Washington Post, a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist, and a national Emmy Award nominee.


Deploying The Secret Police: The Use Of Algorithms In The Criminal Justice System, Jessica Gabel Cino Aug 2018

Deploying The Secret Police: The Use Of Algorithms In The Criminal Justice System, Jessica Gabel Cino

Georgia State University Law Review

Algorithms saturate our lives today; from curated song lists to recommending “friends” and news feeds, they factor into some of the most human aspects of decision-making, tapping into preferences based on an ever-growing amount of data. Regardless of whether the algorithm pertains to routing you around traffic jams or finding your next dinner, there is little regulation and even less transparency regarding just how these algorithms work. Paralleling this societal adoption, the criminal justice system now employs algorithms in some of the most important aspects of investigation and decision-making.

The lack of oversight is abundantly apparent in the criminal justice ...


Safety From Flawed Forensic Sciences Evidence, Boaz Sangero Aug 2018

Safety From Flawed Forensic Sciences Evidence, Boaz Sangero

Georgia State University Law Review

This article addresses the way to safety in the context of forensic sciences evidence. After presenting the current lack of safety, which I term “unsafety,” I raise some possible safety measures to contend with this. My suggestions are grounded on two bases: first, the specific analysis of each type of evidence in line with the most recent research on the subject; and second, modern safety theory and its application to the criminal justice system. It is important to stress that my proposals represent only some of the conceivable safety measures. Developing a comprehensive safety theory for the criminal justice system ...


Three Transformative Ideals To Build A Better Crime Lab, Nicole B. Cásarez, Sandra G. Thompson Aug 2018

Three Transformative Ideals To Build A Better Crime Lab, Nicole B. Cásarez, Sandra G. Thompson

Georgia State University Law Review

This Article proposes that policy makers should consider establishing their jurisdiction’s crime laboratories as government corporations independent of law enforcement as a means of improving their quality and efficiency. Simply building new buildings or seeking accreditation will not solve the endemic problems that crime laboratories have faced. Rather, we propose that crime laboratories be restructured with a new organizational framework comparable to the Houston Forensic Science Center's (HFSC) status as a local government corporation (LGC), which has proven to be conducive to creating a new institutional culture.

From our experience with the HFSC, we also believe that crime ...


A Discouraging Omen: A Critical Evaluation Of The Approved Uniform Language For Testimony And Reports For The Forensic Latent Print Discipline, Simon A. Cole Aug 2018

A Discouraging Omen: A Critical Evaluation Of The Approved Uniform Language For Testimony And Reports For The Forensic Latent Print Discipline, Simon A. Cole

Georgia State University Law Review

The theme of the 2018 Georgia State University Law Review symposium is the Future of Forensic Science Reform. In this Article, I will assess the prospects for reform through a critical evaluation of a document published in February 2018 by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), the Approved Uniform Language for Testimony and Reports for the Forensic Latent Print Discipline (ULTR).

I argue that this document provides reason to be concerned about the prospects of forensic science reform. In Part I, I discuss the background of the ULTR. In Part II, I undertake a critical evaluation of the ULTR ...


The Overdose/Homicide Epidemic, Valena E. Beety Aug 2018

The Overdose/Homicide Epidemic, Valena E. Beety

Georgia State University Law Review

This Article explores the lack of regulation of coroners, concerns within the forensic science community on the reliability of coroner determinations, and ultimately, how elected laypeople serving as coroners may influence the rise in drug-induced homicide prosecutions in the midst of the opioid epidemic.

This Article proposes that the manner of death determination contributes to overdoses being differently prosecuted; that coroners in rural counties are more likely to determine the manner of death for an illicit substance overdose is homicide; and that coroners are provided with insufficient training on interacting with the criminal justice system, particularly on overdose deaths. Death ...


The Face-Off Between Data Privacy And Discovery: Why U.S. Courts Should Respect Eu Data Privacy Law When Considering The Production Of Protected Information, Samantha Cutler Apr 2018

The Face-Off Between Data Privacy And Discovery: Why U.S. Courts Should Respect Eu Data Privacy Law When Considering The Production Of Protected Information, Samantha Cutler

Boston College Law Review

When foreign parties involved in U.S. litigation are ordered to produce information that is protected by EU data privacy law, they are caught in an unfortunate “Catch-22.” Historically, U.S. courts have pointed to the unlikelihood of sanctions for data privacy law violations to justify these orders. EU data privacy law, however, has recently undergone several shifts in favor of tougher rules and significantly increased sanctions. Additionally, EU regulators are now more vigilant and active in enforcing these laws. These developments, combined with the benefits of international judicial respect and the intrinsic value of privacy, mean that U.S ...


Privacy, Screened Out: Analyzing The Threat To Individual Privacy Rights And Fifth Amendment Protections In State V. Stahl, Jesse Coulon Apr 2018

Privacy, Screened Out: Analyzing The Threat To Individual Privacy Rights And Fifth Amendment Protections In State V. Stahl, Jesse Coulon

Boston College Law Review

Courts across the United States have applied Fifth Amendment protections to passcodes, as long as those passcodes are not a foregone conclusion. In order for a court to determine that a passcode is a forgone conclusion, and thus not testimonial in nature, the prosecution must show that they knew the existence, possession, and authenticity of the evidence that would be discovered by the compelled passcode, before the passcode is compelled. The foregone conclusion doctrine was established, and had been used, to balance the need of law enforcement to gather incriminating evidence while still protecting defendants’ Fifth Amendment rights. In 2016 ...


Technological Opacity & Procedural Injustice, Seth Katsuya Endo Mar 2018

Technological Opacity & Procedural Injustice, Seth Katsuya Endo

Boston College Law Review

From Google’s auto-correction of spelling errors to Netflix’s movie suggestions, machine-learning systems are a part of our everyday life. Both private and state actors increasingly employ such systems to make decisions that implicate individuals’ substantive rights, such as with credit scoring, government-benefit eligibility decisions, national security screening, and criminal sentencing. In turn, the rising use of machine-learning systems has led to questioning about whether they are sufficiently accurate, fair, and transparent. This Article builds on that work, focusing on how opaque technologies can subtly erode the due process norm of participation. To illuminate this issue, this Article examines ...


“A Search Is A Search”: Scanning A Credit, Debit, Or Gift Card Is A Search Under The Fourth Amendment, John A. Leblanc Mar 2018

“A Search Is A Search”: Scanning A Credit, Debit, Or Gift Card Is A Search Under The Fourth Amendment, John A. Leblanc

Boston College Law Review

On May 18, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, in United States v. Hillaire, joined the Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth circuits in holding that the government’s act of scanning the magnetic stripes of lawfully seized credit, debit, or gift cards to access the information encoded therein is not a search within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment. In each case, the courts concluded that an individual is precluded from claiming a reasonable expectation of privacy in the electronic information encoded on a card’s magnetic stripe. This Note provides an overview of how Fourth ...


How Daubert And Its Progeny Have Failed Criminalistics Evidence And A Few Things The Judiciary Could Do About It, David H. Kaye Jan 2018

How Daubert And Its Progeny Have Failed Criminalistics Evidence And A Few Things The Judiciary Could Do About It, David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

A recent report of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology questioned the validity of several types of criminalistics identification evidence and recommended “a best practices manual and an Advisory Committee note, providing guidance to Federal judges concerning the admissibility under Rule 702 of expert testimony based on forensic feature-comparison methods.” This article supplies information on why and how judicial bodies concerned with possible rules changes—and courts applying the current rules—can improve their regulation of criminalistics identification evidence. First, it describes how courts have failed to faithfully apply Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceutical’s criteria ...


Firearm-Mark Evidence: Looking Back And Looking Ahead, David H. Kaye Jan 2018

Firearm-Mark Evidence: Looking Back And Looking Ahead, David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

This article, written as a contribution to a festschrift for Paul Giannelli, surveys the development of the law on one type of feature-matching evidence that repeatedly attracted Professor Giannelli’s attention — “firearm-mark evidence.” By inspecting toolmarks on bullets or spent cartridge cases, firearms examiners can supply valuable information on whether a particular gun fired the ammunition in question. But the limits on this information have not always been respected in court, and a growing number of opinions have tried to address this fact.

The article explains how the courts have moved from a position of skepticism of the ability of ...


Touch Dna And Chemical Analysis Of Skin Trace Evidence: Protecting Privacy While Advancing Investigations, Mary Graw Leary Jan 2018

Touch Dna And Chemical Analysis Of Skin Trace Evidence: Protecting Privacy While Advancing Investigations, Mary Graw Leary

Scholarly Articles and Other Contributions

Forensic science transforms criminal investigations by resolving previously unsolvable cases and bringing an increased sense of justice to communities. This application of scientific disciplines to legal questions aids investigators in solving crimes. While many sciences can be utilized—such as physics (pattern evidence), chemistry (toxicology), or biology (cause of death), to name a few—two aspects of scientific advancement have played an outsized role in responding to crime. Trace evidence analysis—specifically, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) analysis—is an essential component to an effective and accurate criminal justice system. DNA evidence has emerged as a powerful tool to identify perpetrators of ...


Touch Dna And Chemical Analysis Of Skin Trace Evidence: Protecting Privacy While Advancing Investigations, Mary Graw Leary Dec 2017

Touch Dna And Chemical Analysis Of Skin Trace Evidence: Protecting Privacy While Advancing Investigations, Mary Graw Leary

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article addresses touch DNA, chemical analysis of skin traces, and the implications for crime scene investigation, arguing that changes in how trace evidence is analyzed require alterations in the law’s approach to its use. Part I discusses the history of traditional DNA analysis. Part II examines the emergence of touch DNA and related technologies and how they differ from traditional DNA analysis. Part III outlines the specific risks created by the collection and storing of results under the current outdated jurisprudence. Part IV focuses on specific risks to suspects and victims of crime. Part V proposes a legal ...


The Unintended Consequences Of California Proposition 47: Reducing Law Enforcement’S Ability To Solve Serious, Violent Crimes, Shelby Kail Aug 2017

The Unintended Consequences Of California Proposition 47: Reducing Law Enforcement’S Ability To Solve Serious, Violent Crimes, Shelby Kail

Pepperdine Law Review

For many years, DNA databases have helped solve countless serious, violent crimes by connecting low-level offenders to unsolved crimes. Because the passage of Proposition 47 reduced several low-level crimes to misdemeanors, which do not qualify for DNA sample collection, Proposition 47 has severely limited law enforcement’s ability to solve serious, violent crimes through California’s DNA database and reliable DNA evidence. This powerful law enforcement tool must be preserved to prevent additional crimes from being committed, to exonerate the innocent, and to provide victims with closure through conviction of their assailants or offenders. Proposition 47’s unintended consequences have ...


The Forensic Community Can Educate Lawyers, Judges, Robert M. Sanger Jun 2017

The Forensic Community Can Educate Lawyers, Judges, Robert M. Sanger

Robert M. Sanger

Forensic science has made significant strides in elevating the standards for forensic analysis, reporting and testimony over the last few years. Yet, lawyers and judges lag far behind in understanding the significance of these strides. There is an attempt to educate law students in the law schools and to educate lawyers and judges through continuing legal and judicial education but it is slow in finding its way into the actual courtroom. Therefore, while there is progress at the highest levels of forensic science, a lot of "junk" science competes for the attention of jurors.

Forensic scientists can help educate the ...


Small Cells, Big Problems: The Increasing Precision Of Cell Site Location Information And The Need For Fourth Amendment Protections, Robert M. Bloom, William T. Clark May 2017

Small Cells, Big Problems: The Increasing Precision Of Cell Site Location Information And The Need For Fourth Amendment Protections, Robert M. Bloom, William T. Clark

Robert M. Bloom

The past fifty years has witnessed an evolution in technology advancement in police surveillance. Today, one of the essential tools of police surveillance is something most Americans carry with them in their pockets every day, the cell phone. Cell phones not only contain a huge repository of personal data, they also provide continuous surveillance of a person’s movement known as cell site location information (CSLI). In 1986, Congress sought to provide some privacy protections to CSLI in the Stored Communication Act. Although this solution may have struck the proper balance in an age when cell phones were a mere ...


Civil Liberty Or National Security: The Battle Over Iphone Encryption, Karen Lowell Mar 2017

Civil Liberty Or National Security: The Battle Over Iphone Encryption, Karen Lowell

Georgia State University Law Review

On June 5, 2013, Edward Snowden released what would be the first of many documents exposing the vast breadth of electronic surveillance the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National Security Agency (NSA) had been conducting on millions of United States citizens. Although the federal agencies had legal authority under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to collect metadata from companies such as Verizon, many Americans considered this data collection to be a massive invasion of privacy.

Equipped with the knowledge of sweeping domestic surveillance programs, citizens and technology firms fighting for strong privacy and security protection, have started ...


Neuroscience In Forensic Contexts: Ethical Concerns, Stephen J. Morse Feb 2017

Neuroscience In Forensic Contexts: Ethical Concerns, Stephen J. Morse

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This is a chapter in a volume, Ethics Challenges in Forensic Psychiatry and Psychology Practice, edited by Ezra E. H. Griffith, M.D. and to be published by Columbia University Press. The chapter addresses whether the use of new neuroscience techniques, especially non-invasive functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and the data from studies employing them raise new ethical issues for forensic psychiatrists and psychologists. The implicit thesis throughout is that if the legal questions, the limits of the new techniques and the relevance of neuroscience to law are properly understood, no new ethical issues are raised. A major ethical lapse ...


Jones On Evidence: Civil And Criminal 7th Ed., Anne T. Mckenna, Clifford S. Fishman Feb 2017

Jones On Evidence: Civil And Criminal 7th Ed., Anne T. Mckenna, Clifford S. Fishman

Anne T. McKenna

In 2004, Anne began co-authoring this seminal evidence treatise, which is in its second century of publication. Jones on Evidence (“Jones”) currently contains 5 hardbound volumes and a softbound appendix of new chapters with two new hardbound volumes forthcoming. All volumes are updated yearly. Jones enables civil and criminal practitioners in private and public practice to learn and understand evidentiary issues and evidentiary rules, including the Federal Rules of Evidence, and to use evidence effectively, whether the issue is admission, exclusion, preservation or relevance. Jones has been cited in numerous federal and state court opinions and law review articles, including ...


Problems With Using Statistics To Justify Institutional Policies, Justin Shin Jan 2017

Problems With Using Statistics To Justify Institutional Policies, Justin Shin

Senior Projects Spring 2017

It is becoming increasingly common for institutions to use statistics to inform policy decisions. We should be prepared to ask ourselves what regulatory principles should be imposed on institutions that seek to justify certain policies through deference to a statistical analysis. This paper will examine the difficulties that come with using statistics to justify actions, and argue that certain standards of transparency and verifiability should be expected from any institution that seeks to involve a statistical analysis in the formation of policies. I will first use Market Share Liability, an established use of statistics, to draw out what responsibilities an ...