Kaplan & Puracal on Junk Science & Criminal Justice

Aliza B. Kaplan and Janis Puracal (Lewis & Clark Law School and Oregon Innocence Project) have posted It's Not a Match: Why the Law Can't Let Go of Junk Science (Albany Law Review, Vol. 81, 2018) on SSRN.  Here is the abstract: In this article, we argue that there is a need to increase validity and reliability of forensic science in the criminal justice system through a collaborative approach. In part II, we explain the legal rules governing the admissibility of scientific evidence in criminal cases and the evolution of that law over time. Parts III and IV describe a 2016 report by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (“PCAST”), which analyzed the methodology and validity of many “pattern identification” or “feature-comparison” methods. PCAST asked whether DNA analysis, bite marks, latent fingerprints, firearms identification, and footwear analysis are supported by reproducible…

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