Tag Archives | evidence

You Watch Too Much TV- The Forensic “Sciences” Under Fire

West Midlands Police (CC BY-SA 2.0)

West Midlands Police (CC BY-SA 2.0)

There have been a spate of scandals recently concerning forensic science: poor methodology, faulty protocols, and an absolute disregard for the chain of evidence.

These scandals don’t even include the mess that is rape kit testing, namely that they aren’t testing anything. Rape kits sit on shelves for years sometimes.

Forensic Magazine states:

Another crime lab scandal was announced over the weekend, and this time it’s the federal government that has the explaining to do.

The Department of Justice along with the FBI have identified 2,500 cases for review after finding that experts on its microscopic hair comparison unit overstated evidence concerning pattern-based forensic techniques in 95 percent of the 268 cases reviewed so far, reports the Washington PostThe cases involve 46 states and include 32 defendants that were sentenced to death, according to the article, of which, 14 have already been executed or died behind bars.

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How To Destroy Your Laptop In A Pinch

1Attention cyber criminals, subversives, and ne’er-do-wells: place this handy sticker in the correct spot on your computer, just in case. Via DesignTaxi:

Your laptop, with all its sensitive data and/or ill-gotten gains, is about to be confiscated by the authorities, who are banging on the door. There’s no time to reformat it—you’ve got to destroy it, fast. This sticker will help you do just that, provided you’ve a drill by your side. (And which self-respecting cyber criminal wouldn’t?)

Meant to be placed directly above your laptop’s hard disk, the sticker sports a crosshair with which you can accurately destroy any digital evidence the cops are after.

Randy Sarafan, who created the stickers, advises to “research the build of your laptop and locate the position of your hard drive…The hard drive should look like a rectangular box with a centered circle somewhere upon it,” he said.

Stick the sticker’s drill guide slightly off center of the hard drive (see first image below) so that you’ll drill the platters instead of the motor.

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U.S. Justice System Rampant With ‘Bad Science’

44794518-30152305-300225 Every year, convictions for serious crimes occur based on debunked pseudo-science such as forensic dentistry and arson science. Add in poor usage of police lineups and fingerprinting, and the potential for finding innocent people guilty is immense. All in all, our courts are scientifically impaired to a degree that’s a menace to justice. Via Yahoo News:

The story of an American man cleared of a rape and robbery conviction by DNA evidence after spending 30 years in jail made headlines across the world on Tuesday.

But despite advances in science and technology, such exonerations are rare, and experts say the US criminal justice system remains riddled with problems that arise from outdated practices and, quite simply, bad science.

Perhaps the worst offender is the police lineup. Research shows that 75 percent of all wrongful convictions that are later cleared by DNA evidence start with eyewitness mistakes.

That was the case for Cornelius Dupree, who was fingered in 1979 by a rape victim who incorrectly picked him out of a photo array.

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