The role of Junk Science in Wrongful Convictions

Last month, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit granted qualified immunity to Lowell Thomas Johnson and Raymond Rawson, the two bite mark specialists whose testimony helped convict Robert Lee Stinson of raping and murdering an elderly Wisconsin woman in 1984. Stinson spent 23 years in prison before DNA testing exonerated him in 2009.

writes Radley Balko.

He goes on

It took more than three decades, but over the past several years, actual scientists have finally started testing the claims of bite mark analysts. And as we’ve pointed out on several occasions here at The Watch, those scientists are showing that bite mark analysis is a fraudulent field.

and also references the case of Ray Krone.

When will it ever end. I left a comment:

There is no end to the bogus evidence that is employed when the State embarks on a wrongful conviction.

Take a look at the Jodi Arias trial : the State changed theory with the sole purpose of contradicting Arias’ claim of self-defense. To accomplish this the Medical Examiner (Dr Horn who has a shady reputation) had to arbitrarily and implausibly suggest there was a “typographical error” in his own autopsy report.

There was no end to the false prosecution claims in the case, they ranged from the ridiculous to the hilarious.

The remedy is for courts to refuse to admit evidence which has no scientifically established basis.

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