Jun 10, 2017 07:52 AM EDT
Criminal convictions using forensic science is in bad light having a 98 percent negative rating review by the FBI. According to the Agency, 26 out of 28 conviction reviews indicate that the science used in requisite for a criminal case contains flaws in a 20 year period investigation. The review triggered the US Attorney General Jeff Sessions decision to back off from forensic science.
Criminal prosecutions like the one that blew a forensic science application, opening the scandals that exposed misrepresentations by its examiners in a Massachusetts Drug Laboratory. Two lab workers are in an investigation for using inaccurate data from their forensic science results and the other dong forensic tests while high on drug evidence. The investigators traced four years back when chemist Annie Dookhan falsified evidence at the Hinton Lab, Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. US Attorney General Jeff Sessions Office gave DAs orders to rectify these anomalies by submitting a report on the list of cases they are preparing to dismiss and a separate roster they believe has a bearing.
When forensic science is misapplied, it contributes to the wrongful criminal convictions accounting for 46 percent of DNA exoneration cases. The study involved 300 convicted cases and almost half of these subjects are flawed in context due to the misapplication of the science.
Innocence Project reports that such misapplications are due to unreliable or invalid forensic discipline, the method has insufficient validation, inaccurate and misleading testimony, human error, and misconduct like result fabrication. The untoward parameters of convictions drove US Attorney General Jeff Sessions' suspension of support to the existing forensic science system, reports Slate.
Innocence Project reports that these concerns were deliberated and submitted to the 2016 summary reports titled "Forensic Science in Criminal Courts: Ensuring Science Validity of Feature Comparison Method" by the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). Recommended solutions to the forensic science flaws like the scientific evaluation of the validity of the forensic disciplines are conducted accordingly to standards that comply with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) with recommendations to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
Other solutions are to increase research in science agencies and institutions, develop an organized and standardized national documentation system, support judicial training down the line in forensic science. The National Commission on Forensic Science (NCFS) leads the country in this direction with coordinated communications to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Director of the NIST.
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