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Series

Evidence

2007

Institution
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Articles 1 - 30 of 59

Full-Text Articles in Law

Statistics In The Jury Box: How Jurors Respond To Mitochondrial Dna Match Probabilities, David H. Kaye, Valerie P. Hans, B. Michael Dann, Erin J. Farley, Stephanie Albertson Dec 2007

Statistics In The Jury Box: How Jurors Respond To Mitochondrial Dna Match Probabilities, David H. Kaye, Valerie P. Hans, B. Michael Dann, Erin J. Farley, Stephanie Albertson

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This article describes parts of an unusually realistic experiment on the comprehension of expert testimony on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequencing in a criminal trial for robbery. Specifically, we examine how jurors who responded to summonses for jury duty evaluated portions of videotaped testimony involving probabilities and statistics. Although some jurors showed susceptibility to classic fallacies in interpreting conditional probabilities, the jurors as a whole were not overwhelmed by a 99.98% exclusion probability that the prosecution presented. Cognitive errors favoring the defense were more prevalent than ones favoring the prosecution. These findings lend scant support to the legal argument that ...


Coming Clean About "Junk Dna", Simon A. Cole Nov 2007

Coming Clean About "Junk Dna", Simon A. Cole

NULR Online

No abstract provided.


Accounting For Federalism In State Courts - Exclusion Of Evidence Obtained Lawfully By Federal Agents, Robert M. Bloom, Hillary J. Massey Nov 2007

Accounting For Federalism In State Courts - Exclusion Of Evidence Obtained Lawfully By Federal Agents, Robert M. Bloom, Hillary J. Massey

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

After the terrorist attacks on September 11th, Congress greatly enhanced federal law enforcement powers through enactment of the U.S.A. Patriot Act. The Supreme Court also has provided more leeway to federal officers in the past few decades, for example by limiting the scope of the exclusionary rule. At the same time, many states have interpreted their constitutions to provide greater individual protections to their citizens than provided by the federal constitution. This phenomenon has sometimes created a wide disparity between the investigatory techniques available to federal versus state law enforcement officers. As a result, state courts sometimes must ...


Science In The Jury Box: Jurors' Views And Understanding Of Mitochondrial Dna Evidence, Valerie P. Hans, David H. Kaye, B. Michael Dann, Erin J. Farley, Stephanie Albertson Oct 2007

Science In The Jury Box: Jurors' Views And Understanding Of Mitochondrial Dna Evidence, Valerie P. Hans, David H. Kaye, B. Michael Dann, Erin J. Farley, Stephanie Albertson

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This article describes parts of an unusually realistic experiment on the comprehension of expert testimony on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequencing in a criminal trial for robbery. Specifically, we examine how jurors who responded to summonses for jury duty evaluated portions of videotaped testimony involving probabilities and statistics. Although some jurors showed susceptibility to classic fallacies in interpreting conditional probabilities, the jurors as a whole were not overwhelmed by a 99.98% exclusion probability that the prosecution presented. Cognitive errors favoring the defense were more prevalent than ones favoring the prosecution. These findings lend scant support to the legal argument that ...


Fact, Fiction And Proof In The 21st Century: Evidence And Credibility For Fact Finding By Administrative Law Judges, Lynn Mclain Oct 2007

Fact, Fiction And Proof In The 21st Century: Evidence And Credibility For Fact Finding By Administrative Law Judges, Lynn Mclain

All Faculty Scholarship

Handout from a panel at the NAALJ Annual Conference covering credibility.


Hearsay Law: Recent Developments In Maryland And In The Supreme Court, Lynn Mclain Oct 2007

Hearsay Law: Recent Developments In Maryland And In The Supreme Court, Lynn Mclain

All Faculty Scholarship

Handout from an Anne Arundel County Bar Association CLE class concerning then-recent developments in Maryland hearsay rules.


Please, Let’S Bury The Junk: The Codis Loci And The Revelation Of Private Information, D.H. Kaye Sep 2007

Please, Let’S Bury The Junk: The Codis Loci And The Revelation Of Private Information, D.H. Kaye

NULR Online

No abstract provided.


Is The “Junk” Dna Designation Bunk?, Simon A. Cole Sep 2007

Is The “Junk” Dna Designation Bunk?, Simon A. Cole

NULR Online

No abstract provided.


Mediating Rules In Criminal Law, Alex Stein, Richard A. Bierschbach Sep 2007

Mediating Rules In Criminal Law, Alex Stein, Richard A. Bierschbach

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Credibility: A Fair Subject For Expert Testimony?, Anne Poulin Jul 2007

Credibility: A Fair Subject For Expert Testimony?, Anne Poulin

Working Paper Series

This article explores the ways in which experts can assist the jury to assess the credibility of other witnesses and suggests analytical approaches to such expert testimony. The article argues that the courts should be more receptive to expert testimony bearing on witness credibility and engage in a more nuanced consideration of the role played by proffered expert testimony and how the role of the evidence affects its admissibility. Doing so should lead the courts to embrace the promise of the modern rules of evidence and permit experts to assist juries as they assess credibility.


Every Juror Wants A Story: Narrative Relevance, Third Party Guilt And The Right To Present A Defense, John H. Blume, Sheri L. Johnson, Emily C. Paavola Jul 2007

Every Juror Wants A Story: Narrative Relevance, Third Party Guilt And The Right To Present A Defense, John H. Blume, Sheri L. Johnson, Emily C. Paavola

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

On occasion, criminal defendants hope to convince a jury that the state has not met its burden of proving them guilty beyond a reasonable doubt by offering evidence that someone else (a third party) committed the crime. Currently, state and federal courts assess the admissibility of evidence of third-party guilt using a variety of standards. In general, however, there are two basic approaches. Many state courts require a defendant to proffer evidence of some sort of direct link or connection between a specific third-party and the crime. A second group of state courts, as well as federal courts, admit evidence ...


Forensics: Crime Scene Investigation Case Closed, Christina Parente May 2007

Forensics: Crime Scene Investigation Case Closed, Christina Parente

Senior Honors Projects

No abstract provided.


Citizen Journalism And The Reporter’S Privilege, Mary-Rose Papandrea Mar 2007

Citizen Journalism And The Reporter’S Privilege, Mary-Rose Papandrea

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

The reporter’s privilege is under attack, and “pajama-clad bloggers” are largely to blame. Courts and commentators have argued that because the rise of bloggers and other “citizen journalists” renders it difficult to define who counts as a reporter entitled to invoke the privilege, its continued existence is in grave doubt. The accompanying Article argues that this hysteria is misplaced. The development of the internet as a new medium of communication in many ways poses the same kinds of challenges to the reporter’s privilege that courts and state legislatures have faced for decades as television reporters, radio commentators, book ...


Out To Lunch: Saks & Koehler Reply To Rudin & Imman's Commentary, Jonathan Koehler Jan 2007

Out To Lunch: Saks & Koehler Reply To Rudin & Imman's Commentary, Jonathan Koehler

Faculty Working Papers

At several points in their comment on our article in Science (1), Rudin & Inman (2, 3) asserted or clearly implied that we had been dishonest in our presentation. In each of those instances Rudin & Inman's charges are groundless, as we demonstrate below.

Had Rudin & Inman examined the actual source [see Fig. 1, right], they would have discovered that the words were indeed those of Moenssens, that they were consistent with the context in which they appeared, that Moenssens was not quoting Zain or anyone else, and that Saks & Koehler had accurately attributed the statement to its author, Andre Moenssens.


Comment: Experts Who Don't Know They Don't Know, Jonathan Koehler Jan 2007

Comment: Experts Who Don't Know They Don't Know, Jonathan Koehler

Faculty Working Papers

Sadly, the conclusion reached by Green and Armstrong (2006) – that experts should not be used for predicting the decisions that people will make in conflicts – comes as no surprise. Decades ago, Armstrong himself taught us that expertise beyond a minimal level does not improve judgmental accuracy across a variety of domains (Armstrong, 1980). More recently, Tetlock (2006) drove home the point in a study of hundreds of political experts who made thousands of forecasts over many years. Like Green and Armstrong (2006), Tetlock (2006) found that that expert forecasts were frequently inaccurate. In a nod to Armstrong's previous work ...


Probability, Policy And The Problem Of Reference Class, Robert J. Rhee Jan 2007

Probability, Policy And The Problem Of Reference Class, Robert J. Rhee

Faculty Scholarship

This short paper focuses on the problem of reference class in evidentiary assessment as it relates to probability and weight of evidence. The reluctance to inject mathematical formalism into the factfinding function is justified. Objective probability requires a reference class from which a proportion is derived. Probability assessments change with the reference class. If a proposition is subject to proportional comparison against two or more different references, their selection is often an inductive process. The advantage of objectivity and methodological rigor is illusory. A legal dispute is the search for a plausible understanding of the truth, and an overtly mathematized ...


Circumventing Daubert In The Gene Pool, Erica Beecher-Monas Jan 2007

Circumventing Daubert In The Gene Pool, Erica Beecher-Monas

Law Faculty Research Publications

No abstract provided.


The Perils Of Evidentiary Manipulation, Edward K. Cheng Jan 2007

The Perils Of Evidentiary Manipulation, Edward K. Cheng

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

The use of evidentiary rules to achieve substantive goals strikes me as a Faustian bargain, and, given Bierschbach and Stein's acknowledgedly tentative position, I hope to dissuade them of the virtues of the practice. My goal therefore is to explore briefly the potential dark side of specialized evidentiary rules. The concerns of injecting substantive goals into evidence law extend far beyond the narrow legitimacy concerns Bierschbach and Stein raise. It is not simply the question of whether we aspire to a pluralistic or majority-take-all democratic society. Rather, evidentiary manipulation threatens the legitimacy of criminal and evidence law... Bierschbach and ...


Independent Judicial Research In The "Daubert" Age, Edward K. Cheng Jan 2007

Independent Judicial Research In The "Daubert" Age, Edward K. Cheng

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

The Supreme Court's Daubert trilogy places judges in the unenviable position of assessing the reliability of often unfamiliar and complex scientific expert testimony. Over the past decade, scholars have therefore explored various ways of helping judges with their new gatekeeping responsibilities. Unfortunately, the two dominant approaches, which focus on doctrinal tests and external assistance mechanisms, have been largely ineffective. This Article advocates for a neglected but important method for improving scientific decision making-independent judicial research. It argues that judges facing unfamiliar and complex scientific admissibility decisions can and should engage in independent library research to better educate themselves about ...


Who Knew? Admissibility Of Subsequent Remedial Measures When Defendants Are Without Knowledge Of The Injuries, Mark G. Boyko, Ryan G. Vacca Jan 2007

Who Knew? Admissibility Of Subsequent Remedial Measures When Defendants Are Without Knowledge Of The Injuries, Mark G. Boyko, Ryan G. Vacca

Law Faculty Scholarship

Federal Rule of Evidence 407 prohibits the introduction of subsequent remedial measures for the purposes of demonstrating negligence, culpable conduct, or product defect. But the rule breaks down, in application and purpose, when a defendant undertakes the new safety measure after the plaintiff's injury, but before the defendant had knowledge of the loss. Such a situation is not uncommon. Would-be defendants frequently improve their products and product safety for a variety of reasons. Toxic exposure cases, where exposure often predates diagnosis of the injury by a decade or more, represent a prime example of cases where defendants are likely ...


The Use And Misuse Of High-Tech Evidence By Prosecutors: Ethical And Evidentiary Issues, Robert Aronson, Jacqueline Mcmurtrie Jan 2007

The Use And Misuse Of High-Tech Evidence By Prosecutors: Ethical And Evidentiary Issues, Robert Aronson, Jacqueline Mcmurtrie

Articles

This essay first addresses the ethical and evidentiary standards for the emerging use of high-tech computer-generated animations and computer-assisted closing arguments. Next, this essay considers the same questions within the context of forensic DNA evidence. Third, this essay considers the ethics of prosecutors' use of such evidence and the consequences for the misuse of this evidence. Finally, this essay suggests remedies to ethical problems facing prosecutors in their use of this kind of evidence.


Is Confrontation The Bottom Line?, Roger C. Park Jan 2007

Is Confrontation The Bottom Line?, Roger C. Park

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Everything New Is Old Again: Brain Fingerprinting And Evidentiary Analogy, Alexandra J. Roberts Jan 2007

Everything New Is Old Again: Brain Fingerprinting And Evidentiary Analogy, Alexandra J. Roberts

Law Faculty Scholarship

Brain Fingerprinting uses electroencephalography to ascertain the presence or absence of information in a subject's brain based on his reaction to particular stimuli. As a new forensic tool, Brain Fingerprinting technology stands poised to exert a tremendous impact on the presentation and outcome of selected legal cases in the near future. It also provides a fertile case study to examine the role of analogical reasoning in the process by which lawyers, experts, judges, and the media influence how factjinders perceive and evaluate unfamiliar types of proof When juridical metaphor disguises, distorts, or destroys ideas, it ceases to serve as ...


"Remarkable Stratagems And Conspiracies": How Unscrupulous Lawyers And Credulous Judges Created An Exception To The Hearsay Rule, Marianne Wesson Jan 2007

"Remarkable Stratagems And Conspiracies": How Unscrupulous Lawyers And Credulous Judges Created An Exception To The Hearsay Rule, Marianne Wesson

Articles

This paper, a companion piece to the author's earlier exploration of the case of Mutual Life Insurance Company v. Hillmon, describes the remarkable record of unethical conduct compiled by the eminent and respectable attorneys for the insurance companies in the course of that litigation. When married with the Supreme Court Justices' uncritical willingness to accept the false narrative thus contrived, these attorneys' misconduct led to the creation of an important rule of evidence - a rule of questionable merit. This article aims to remind us that lawyers who are willing to distort the process of litigation have the power not ...


Evidentiary Wisdom And Blinders In Perspective: Thoughts On Misjudging, Elaine W. Shoben Jan 2007

Evidentiary Wisdom And Blinders In Perspective: Thoughts On Misjudging, Elaine W. Shoben

Scholarly Works

Empirical studies serve to enlighten the law, even when they simply confirm the wisdom of existing rules. Chris Guthrie's article, Misjudging, primarily serves that useful function—confirming the wisdom of existing rules—even though the author sought to establish something different. Guthrie's article applies insights from cognitive psychology to the resolution of legal disputes and presents some empirical proof of the effect of the application. He concludes that three sets of “blinders”—informational, cognitive, and attitudinal—affect the ability of judges to reach correct resolutions of disputes. He therefore recommends further appreciation of the ability of arbitration and ...


On The Legal Consequences Of Sauces: Should Thomas Keller's Recipes Be Per Se Copyrightable?, Christopher J. Buccafusco Jan 2007

On The Legal Consequences Of Sauces: Should Thomas Keller's Recipes Be Per Se Copyrightable?, Christopher J. Buccafusco

All Faculty Scholarship

The restaurant industry now takes in over $500 billion a year, but recent courts have been skeptical of the notion that one of its most valuable assets, original recipes, are subject to copyright protection. With more litigation looming and the contours of the debate insufficiently mapped out, this article establishes the appropriate groundwork for analyzing the copyrightability of recipes. I show that, contrary to recent appellate court opinions, recipes meet the statutory requirements for copyrightability. I argue, by analogizing to musical compositions, that written recipes work to satisfy the fixation requirement of copyright law just as musical notation does for ...


Please, Let's Bury The Junk: The Codis Loci And The Revelation Of Private Information, David H. Kaye Jan 2007

Please, Let's Bury The Junk: The Codis Loci And The Revelation Of Private Information, David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

This Northwestern University Law Review Colloquy paper describes the four possible ways in which genetic loci could possess predictive or diagnostic value with regard to diseases and explains why these mechanisms have not led, and probably cannot lead, to useful screening tests with the Convicted Offender DNA Index System (CODIS) profiles in national, state, and local databases. It then considers the phenotypes and familial relationships that the CODIS STRs can be used to identify. The profiles carry limited information about an individual's race and familial relationships, and the article places the resulting privacy issues in perspective. Finally, the paper ...


Revisiting 'Dreyfus': A More Complete Account Of A Trial By Mathematics, David H. Kaye Jan 2007

Revisiting 'Dreyfus': A More Complete Account Of A Trial By Mathematics, David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

Legal literature and case law depicts the infamous conviction of Alfred Dreyfus for treason and espionage in 1899 as a prime example of the irresistible power of even grossly fallacious mathematical demonstrations to overwhelm a legal tribunal. This essay shows that Dreyfus is not a case of mathematics run amok, unchecked and uncomprehended. To the contrary, the defects in the mathematical proof were dramatically exposed, and this evidence did not lead Dreyfus's judges to condemn him. This history undercuts the reliance of modern courts and commentators on Dreyfus as an indication or illustration of the alleged dangers of probability ...


The Science Of Dna Identification: From The Laboratory To The Courtroom (And Beyond), David H. Kaye Jan 2007

The Science Of Dna Identification: From The Laboratory To The Courtroom (And Beyond), David H. Kaye

Journal Articles

This article focuses on sequences of DNA base-pairs, which are becoming increasingly important in the field of law. These DNA sequences are used by forensic scientists to discover evidence such as blood stains, semen, saliva, and hair, and has become highly useful in the courtroom with regard to exonerating the innocent and convicting the guilty. Part I of the article examines how courts may (or may not) admit DNA evidence in court through four phases: uncritical acceptance; serious challenges to analytical methods and statistical interpretation of the results; renewed acceptance of DNA evidence; and acceptance of advance systems of DNA ...


Chimeras: Double The Dna - Double The Fun For Crime Scene Investigators, Prosecutors, And Defense Attorneys?, Catherine Arcabascio Jan 2007

Chimeras: Double The Dna - Double The Fun For Crime Scene Investigators, Prosecutors, And Defense Attorneys?, Catherine Arcabascio

Faculty Scholarship

This article first explores the mythological origins of the term "chimera." It then explores the causes and scientific explanations of chimerism and the various conditions covered by the term chimera in the area of genetics. Although this article will discuss the various chimeric conditions that are thought to exist, its primary focus is on chimerism that is the result of the fusing of embryos in utero. Next, the article will discuss recent cases of chimerism - and of alleged chimerism - and how the genetic differences between chimeras and the general population came to light. It also will discuss the implications that ...