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Giannelli Dayton Giannelli Dayton Presentation Transcript

  • Scientific Evidence Paul Giannelli Weatherhead Professor of Law Case Western Reserve University
  • Developments in the 1990s
    • DNA Litigation
    • Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals
      • Supreme Court’s “junk science” decision
    • Abuse Cases
      • W. Virginia, Oklahoma City, FBI
  • DNA Admissibility “Wars”
    • From university science, not forensic science
    • “ Science culture”
      • written protocols
      • quality assurance/quality control
      • proficiency testing
    • Open science vs. adversarial science
    View slide
  • DNA Exonerations
    • Mistaken eyewitnesses: 84 %
    • Police misconduct: 50 %
    • Prosecutorial misconduct: 42 %
    • Tainted or fraudulent science : 33 %
    • Ineffective defense counsel: 27 %
    • False confessions: 24 %
    • Jailhouse snitches: 21 %
        • Scheck et al., Actual Innocence 246 (2000) (62 cases)
    View slide
  • Abuse Cases
    • In re W.Va. State Police Crime Lab., Serology Div. , 438 S.E. 501 (W. Va. 1993) (Fred Zain) (perjured testimony, false lab reports)
    • Mitchell v. Gibson, 262 F.3d 1036, 1044 (10th Cir. 2001) (“Ms. Gilchrist thus provided the jury with evidence implicating Mr. Mitchell in the sexual assault of the victim which she knew was rendered false and misleading by evidence withheld from the defense.”)
  • Daubert Trilogy
    • Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharm., Inc.
      • 509 U.S. 579 (1993)
      • establishes reliability test; rejects Frye general acceptance test
    • General Elec. Co. v. Joiner
      • 522 U.S. 136 (1997)
      • appellate review of Daubert issues: abuse of discretion
    • Kumho Tire Co. v. Carmichael
      • 526 U.S. 137 (1999)
      • Daubert applies to “technical” evidence – i.e., all experts
  • Daubert Factors
    • (1) Testing (“falsifiability”)
    • (2) Peer review & publication
    • (3) Known or potential error rate
    • (4) Standards controlling use of technique
    • (5) General acceptance (from Frye test)
  • Federal Evidence Rule 702
    • “ If scientific , technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact [jury] to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise . . .”
  • Rule 702: Amendment (2000)
    • “if (1) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data,
    • (2) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and
    • (3) the witness has applied the principles and methods reliably to the facts of the case .”
  • Rule 702 Requirements:
    • (1) Subject matter requirement : Is this topic a proper subject for expert testimony?
    • (2) Qualifications requirement : Is this witness qualified in this subject matter?
  • Subject Matter Requirement Lay Knowledge inadmissible E.g., x-rays Expertise admissible A B E.g., DNA Experimental inadmissible E.g., polygraph
  • Subject Matter Tests Lay Knowledge 1. “beyond ken” (common law) 2. “assist” jury (Rule 702) Expertise A B Experimental 1. Frye test 2. Daubert test 3. Relevancy test 4. Other tests
  • Daubert : Initial Reviews
    • “ Astonishingly, all parties expressed satisfaction with the Daubert decision – the lawyers for the plaintiff and defense, and scientists who wrote amicus briefs.”
      • Foster et al., Policy Forum: Science and the Toxic Tort , 261 Science 1509, 1614 (Sept. 17, 1993)
  • Comparison of Tests (1993) Frye test most restrictive Daubert test intermediate standard Relevancy test most permissive
  • Daubert : Liberal v. Strict
    • “ Given the Rules’ permissive backdrop and their inclusion of a specific rule on expert testimony that does not mention ‘general acceptance,’ the assertion that the Rules somehow assimilated Frye is unconvincing. Frye made ‘general acceptance’ the exclusive test for admitting expert scientific testimony. That austere standard, absent from, and incompatible with the Federal Rules of Evidence, should not be applied in federal trials.” 509 U.S. at 589.
  • Daubert continued:
    • “ The Rule’s basic standard of relevance ... is a liberal one.” Id. at 587.
    • “ [A] rigid ‘general acceptance’ requirement would be at odds with the ‘ liberal thrust ’ of the Federal Rules and their ‘general approach of relaxing the traditional barriers to ‘opinion’ testimony.” Id. at 588.
  • But: “Gatekeeper” role
    • “ [I]n order to qualify as ‘scientific knowledge,’ an inference or assertion must be derived by the scientific method. Proposed testimony must be supported by appropriate validation – i.e., ‘good grounds,’ based on what is known. In short, the requirement that an expert’s testimony pertain to ‘scientific knowledge’ establishes a standard of evidentiary reliability.” Id. at 588.
  • United States v. Bonds
    • DNA admitted at trial under Frye test
    • “ We find that the DNA testimony easily meets the more liberal test set out by the Supreme Court in Daubert .”
      • 12 F.3d 540, 568 (6th Cir. 1993)
  • Borawick v. Shay
    • Repressed memory evidence
    • “ by loosening the strictures on scientific evidence set by Frye , Daubert reinforces the idea that there should be a presumption of admissibility of evidence”
      • 68 F.3d 597, 610 (2d Cir. 1995)
  • Later Supreme Court Cases
    • Joiner (1997):
      • Daubert “somewhat broader” than Frye
    • Kumho (1999):
      • Daubert extends to nonscientific evidence
    • Wisegram v. Marley Co., 528 U.S. 440 (2000)
      • Daubert sets an “exacting standard”
  • U.S. v. Horn
    • “ Under Daubert , ... it was expected that it would be easier to admit evidence that was the product of new science or technology. In practice, however, it often seems as though the opposite has occurred – application of Daubert/Kumho Tire analysis results in the exclusion of evidence that might otherwise have been admitted under Frye .”
      • 185 F. Supp. 2d 530 (D. Md. 2002) (HGN)
  • Admissibility Challenges
    • Supreme Court in Daubert and Kumho “is plainly inviting a reexamination even of ‘generally accepted’ venerable, technical fields.”
        • U.S. v. Hines, 55 F. Supp. 2d 62, 67 (D. Mass. 1999)
    • “ Courts are now confronting challenges to testimony … whose admissibility had long been settled.”
        • U.S. v. Hidalgo, 229 F. Supp. 2d 961, 966 (D. Ariz. 2002)
  • Civil Cases
    • “ In the Daubert case ... the Supreme Court rejected the deferential standard of the Frye Rule in favor of a more assertive standard that required courts to determine that expert testimony was well grounded in the methods and procedures of science.”
      • Kassierer & Cecil, Inconsistency in Evidentiary Standards for Medical Testimony: Disorder in the Courts , 288 J. Am. Med. Ass’n 1382, 1383 (2002)
  • Rand Institute: Civil Cases
    • “ [S]ince Daubert , judges have examined the reliability of expert evidence more closely and have found more evidence unreliable as a result.”
      • Dixon & Gill, Changes in the Standards of Admitting Expert Evidence in Federal Civil Cases Since the Daubert Decision , 8 Psychol., Pub. Pol’y & L. 251 (2002)
  • Study of Criminal Cases
    • “ Daubert decision did not impact on the admission rates of expert testimony at either the trial or appellate court levels.”
      • Groscup et al., The Effects of Daubert on the Admissibility of Expert Testimony in State and Federal Criminal Cases , 8 Pyschol., Pub. Pol’y & L. 339, 364 (2002)
  • Forensic Community
    • “ The Daubert Standard goes a step further than Frye and requires the forensic scientists to prove that the evidence is fundamentally scientifically reliable, not just generally accepted by his/her peers in the discipline.”
      • Jones, President’s Editorial – The Changing Practice of Forensic Science , 47 J. Forensic Sci. 437, 437 (2002)
  • Comparison of Tests (2006)
    • No reliability test
      • E.g., Relevancy test
    • Reliability tests
      • E.g., Frye general acceptance test
      • E.g., Daubert test
      • E.g., Other reliability tests
  • Daubert in the States
    • Frye jurisdictions – Cal., N.Y., Fla., Ill., Pa., Md.
    • Daubert jurisdictions
      • But not necessarily Joiner & Kumho
    • Relevancy test – e.g., Wisconsin
    • Other reliability tests – e.g., N.C.
  • Strict v. Lax Approaches
    • “ The choice is not between easy Frye and difficult Daubert ; it is between strict and lax scrutiny.”
      • Redmayne, Expert Evidence and Criminal Justice 113 (2001)
  • Daubert : Strict v. Lax
    • U.S. v. Crisp, 324 F.3d 261 (4th Cir. 2003)
      • Admitting handwriting comparison (lax)
      • Admitting fingerprint identification (lax)
    • “ The government has had ten years to comply with Daubert . It should not be given a pass in this case.” (strict)
      • Id. at 272 (Michael, J., dissenting)
  • Lee v. Martinez (lax Daubert )
    • Admitting polygraph evidence under Daubert
    • “ This liberal approach [ Daubert ] to the admission of evidence is consistent with the intent of the drafters of the Federal Rules of Evidence.”
      • 96 P.3d 291, 297 (N.M. 2004)
  • Ramirez v. State (strict Frye )
    • “ In order to preserve the integrity of the criminal justice system in Florida, particularly in the face of rising nationwide criticism of forensic evidence in general, our state courts … must apply the Frye test in a prudent manner to cull scientific fiction and junk science from fact. Any doubt as to admissibility … should be resolved in a manner that minimizes the chance of a wrongful conviction, especially in a capital case.” 810 So. 2d 836, 853 (Fla. 2001)
  • People v. Davis (lax Frye )
    • Admitting “lip print” evidence under Frye
    • QD expert “testified that lip print comparison is an accepted method of scientific identification in the forensic science community . . . He is unaware of any dissent in the field regarding the methodology used to make a positive identification of a lip print.”
        • 710 N.E.2d 1251 (Ill. Ct. App. 1999)
  • Hair Comparisons
    • “ This court has been unsuccessful in its attempts to locate any indication that expert hair comparison testimony meets any of the requirements of Daubert .”
        • Williamson v. Reynolds, 904 F. Supp. 1529, 1558 (E.D. Okl. 1995) rev’d on this issue , Williamson v. Ward, 110 F.3d 1508, 1522-23 (10th Cir. 1997) (due process, not Daubert , standard applies in habeas proceedings)
  • Hair Comparison (cont.)
    • Most courts still admit this evidence
    • DNA evidence compared: Microscopic analysis wrong 12% of time
        • Houch & Budowle, Correlation of Microscopic and Mitochondrial DNA Hair Comparisons , 47 J. Forensic Sci. 964 (2002)
  • Handwriting Comparisons
    • “ Because the principle of uniqueness is without empirical support, we conclude that a document examiner will not be permitted to testify that the maker of a known document is the maker of the questioned document. Nor will a document examiner be able to testify as to identity in terms of probabilities.”
        • U.S. v. Hidalgo, 229 F. Supp. 2d 961, 967 (D. Ariz. 2002)
  • Handwriting (cont.)
    • U.S. v. Prime, 363 F.3d 1028, 1033 (9th Cir. 2004) (admitting)
    • U.S. v. Crisp, 324 F.3d 261 (4th Cir. 2003) (same)
  • Fingerprints
    • U.S. v. Llera Plaza, 188 F. Supp. 2d 549, 558 (E.D. Pa. 2002) (excluding and then admitting)
    • U.S. v. Mitchell, 365 F.3d 215, 247 (3d Cir. 2004) (admitting)
    • U.S. v. Abreu, 406 F.3d 1304 (11th Cir. 2005) (same)
  • U.S. v. Havvard
    • Error rate is “zero.” ???
    • “ Peer review” is a second examiner reviewing the analysis. ???
    • Adversarial testing = scientific testing ???
      • 117 F. Supp. 2d 848 (S.D. Ind. 2000)
  • Fingerprints: Stephan Cowans
    • Released after serving 6 years (Massachusetts) for nonfatal shooting of a police officer. First conviction overturned on DNA evidence in which fingerprint evidence was crucial in securing the wrongful conviction.
      • Loftus & Cole, Contaminated Evidence , 304 Science 673, 959, May 14, 2004
  • Riki Jackson
    • Convicted of murder in 1997 based on bloody fingerprints discovered on a window fan.
    • 2 defense experts, retired FBI examiners, testified that there was “no match.”
      • McRoberts et al., Forensics Under the Microscope: Unproven Techniques Sway Courts, Erode Justice , Chi. Trib., Oct. 17, 2004
  • Brandon Mayfield
    • Although F.B.I. found fingerprint match, Spanish officials matched the fingerprints to an Algerian national.
      • Kershaw, Spain and U.S. at Odds on Mistaken Terror Arrest, N.Y. Times, Jun. 5, 2004 at A1
  • FBI Report (2004)
    • “ [D]issimilarities … were easily observed when a detailed analysis of the latent print was conducted.”
    • “ inherent pressure of high-profile case”
    • “ confirmation bias”
  • FBI Report (cont.)
    • “ To disagree was not an expected response.”
    • “ Verifiers should be given challenging exclusions during blind proficiency tests to ensure that they are independently applying ACE-V methodology correctly …”
        • Stacey, A Report on the Erroneous Fingerprint Individualization in the Madrid Train Bombing Case , 54 J. Forensic Identification 707 (2004)
  • Inspector General Report
    • A significant cause of the misidentification was “reasoning ‘backward’ from features that were visible in the known prints of Mayfield.”
    • “ Having found as many as 10 points of unusual similarity, the FBI examiners began to ‘find’ additional features in LFP 17 that were not really there, but rather were suggested to the examiners by features in the Mayfield prints.”
  • I.G. Report (cont.)
    • “ FBI examiners did not attempt to determine the basis of the [Spanish National Police’s] doubts before reiterating that they were ‘absolutely confident’ in the identification on April 15, a full week before the FBI Laboratory met with the SNP.”
  • Fingerprint Mistakes
    • Cole, More Than Zero: Accounting for Error in Latent Fingerprint Identification , 95 J. Crim. L. & Criminology 985 (2005) (documenting 23 cases of misidentifications)
  • The “Experiment”
    • 5 fingerprint examiners asked to review their prior cases, believing them to be the Mayfield prints:
    • 1 still judged the print to be a match
    • 3 directly contradicted their prior identifications
    • 1 concluded insufficient data
        • Itiel E. Dror et el., Contextual Information Renders Experts Vulnerable to Making Erroneous Identifications , 156 Forensic Sci. Int’l 74 (2006).
  • FBI Review
    • 2 approaches:
      • quantifiable minimum threshold
      • “ black box”
        • “ [t]o be truly blind, the second examiner should have no knowledge of the interpretation by the first examiner (to include not seeing notes or reports”
        • Budowle et al., Review of the Scientific Basis for Friction Ridge Comparisons as a Means of Identification: Committee Findings and Recommendations , 8 Forensic Sci. Communications (Jan. 2006)
  • Simultaneous Impressions
    • “ [A]pplication of ACE-V to simultaneous impressions cannot rely on the more usual application of ACE-V for its admissibility, but must be independently tested ….”
    • “ On the record before the motion judge, the Commonwealth has not yet established that the application of the ACE-V method to simultaneous impressions is generally accepted by the fingerprint examiner community ….”
      • Commonwealth v. Patterson, 840 N.E.2d 12 (Mass. 2005)
  • Firearms Identification: Admitting Evidence
    • U.S. v. Hicks, 389 F.3d 514 (5th Cir. 2004)
    • U.S. v. Foster, 300 F. Supp. 2d 375 (D. Md. 2004)
    • But see Schwartz, A Systemic Challenge to the Reliability and Admissibility of Firearms and Toolmark Identification , 6 Colum. Science & Tech. L. Rev. (2005)
  • Cartridge Case Ident. (cont.)
    • Inadmissible because failed to follow standards:
    • No documentation - sketches or photo
    • No technical review by 2d examiner
      • U.S. v. Monteiro, 407 F. Supp. 2d 351 (D. Mass. 2006)
  • Cartridge Case Ident. (cont.)
    • “ O’Shea declared that this match could be made ‘to the exclusion of every other firearm in the world.’ . . . That conclusion, needless to say, is extraordinary, particularly given O’Shea’s data and methods.”
    • Admitting similarities, but not conclusion
      • U.S. v. Green, 405 F. Supp. 2d 104 (D. Mass. 2005)
  • Cartridge Case Ident. (cont.)
    • “ I reluctantly come to the above conclusion because of my confidence that any other decision will be rejected by appellate courts, in light of precedents across the country . . . While I recognize that the Daubert-Kumho standard does not require the illusory perfection of a television show (CSI, this wasn't), when liberty hangs in the balance—and, in the case of the defendants facing the death penalty, life itself—the standards should be higher than were met in this case, and than have been imposed across the country. The more courts admit this type of toolmark evidence without requiring documentation, proficiency testing, or evidence of reliability, the more sloppy practices will endure; we should require more.” U.S. v. Green, supra
  • Gunshot Residue Tests
    • Baltimore PD used 2 (instead of 3) elements
    • Also, contamination problems
      • Bykowicz, Lawyers Call City Analysis of Gunshot Residue Flawed , Baltimore Sun, Mar. 5, 2005
      • Nethercott & Thompson, Lessons from Baltimore’s GSR Debacle , The Champion 36 (June 2005)
  • GSR (cont.)
    • Bykowicz, FBI Lab Scraps Gunfire Residue: Agency Won’t Do Analysis, Putting Evidence in Doubt , Baltimore Sun, May 26, 2006 (“The resulting [FBI] contamination study . . . documents the presence of hundreds of particles consistent with gunshot resulted in several areas of the lab.”)
  • GSR (cont.)
    • Judge Hall: “This court is not convinced that the relevant scientific community has a generally accepted standard for interpreting what conclusions can be drawn from GSR testing and analysis. . . . It is clear that significant questions exist . . . Concerning how many particles are required for there to be a positive test.”)
      • Orrick, Anoka Judge Rejects Gunshot Residue Evidence , St. Paul Pioneer Press, July 13, 2006 (quoting
  • Bullet Lead Comparison
    • “ Chemically indistinguishable”
    • “ Could have come from the same box.”
        • State v. Earhart, 823 S.W.2d 607(Tex. Crim. App. 1991)
    • Melt “can range from the equivalent of as few as 12,000 to as many as 35 million 40grain, .22 caliber longrifle bullets)
        • National Research Council, Forensic Analysis: Weighing Bullet Lead Evidence (2004)
  • Bullet Lead (cont.)
    • State v. Behn, 868 A.2d 329 (N.J. Super. A.D. 2005)
      • “ based on erroneous scientific foundations”
    • Clemons v. State, 896 A.2d 1059 (Md. 2006)
      • Inadmissible under Frye
    • Ragland v. Commonwealth,191 S.W.3d 569 (Ky. 2006)
      • Inadmissible under Daubert
  • Bitemark Comparison
    • “ Despite the continued acceptance of bitemark evidence in European, Oceanic and North American Courts, the fundamental scientific basis for bitemark analysis has never been established.”
        • Pretty & Sweet, The Scientific Basis for Human Bitemark Analyses – A Critical Review , 41 Sci. & Just. 85, 86 (2001)
  • Bitemark (cont.)
    • State v. Krone, 897 P.2d 621 (Ariz. 1995) (“The bite marks were crucial to the State’s case because there was very little other evidence to suggest Krone’s guilt.”)
    • Krone exonerated through DNA profiling
      • Hansen, The Uncertain Science of Evidence , ABA J. 49 (July 2005)
  • Bitemark (cont.)
    • Expert “opined that upon finding five unique points of identity between a bite mark and the suspect's teeth, the chances of someone else having made the mark would be 4.1 billion to one. Mr. Otero was subsequently exonerated when DNA” did not match.
        • Ege v. Yukins, 380 F. Supp. 2d 852, 871 (E.D. Mich. 2005)
  • Bitemark (cont.)
    • Expert concluded “that Burke's teeth matched the bite mark on the victim's left breast to a ‘reasonable degree of scientific certainty.’ … DNA analysis showed that Burke was excluded as the source of male DNA found in the bite mark on the victim's left breast.”
      • Burke v. Town Of Walpole, 405 F.3d 66, 73 (1st Cir. 2005)
  • Forensic Science: Oxymoron?
    • Donald Kennedy, Editor-in-Chief, Editorial, Forensic Science: Oxymoron?, 302 Science 1625 (2003) (discussing the cancellation of a National Academy of Sciences project designed to examine various forensic science techniques because the Departments of Justice and Defense insisted on a right of review that the Academy has refused to other grant sponsors)
  • Houston Crime Lab
    • “ [P]rosecutors in Mr. Sutton’s case had used [DNA] to convict him, submitting false scientific evidence asserting that there was a solid match between Mr. Sutton’s DNA and that found at the crime scene. In fact, 1 of every 8 black people, including Mr. Sutton, shared the relevant DNA profile. More refined retesting cleared him.”
        • Liptak & Blumenthal, New Doubt Cast on Crime Testing in Houston Cases , N.Y. Times, Aug. 5, 2004
  • Independent Report (2005)
    • Four instances of “dry labbing” in drug section (reporting results without doing tests)
    • These instances were well known within the lab.
    • One of the 2 examiners involved was still employed, having been reinstated by the police chief after being removed from his position by the lab.
  • DNA Unit
    • Technical leader in the DNA unit had been removed and never replaced, leaving a 6-year vacancy in an important supervisory position.
    • To compound matters, he was reassigned to head the quality control program, a critical task that even he admitted he did in a lackluster fashion.
  • Backlog
    • March 2002 estimate that “19,500 sexual assault kits received by HPD that had never been processed, some dating as far back as 1980.”
    • Only “known suspect” cases tested – i.e., “cold cases” not entered into DNA databases.
    • Lynn Jones, arrested for sexual assault of a child, remained in jail for 9 months awaiting results.
  • Leaky Roof
    • 34 homicide & sexual assault cases badly water damaged by tropical storm in 2001 due to leaking roof.
    • “ In 2003, … Crime Lab Employees told [I.A.] investigators that this biological evidence had become so saturated with water that they observed bloody water dripping out the boxes … and pooling on the floor.”
  • Regulation of Crime Labs
    • Accreditation of labs
      • E.g., New York, Oklahoma, Texas, Virginia
    • “ Justice for All” Act
      • Requires states to have an investigative entity
    • DNA Identification Act
      • Requires accreditation of DNA labs within 2 years
  • ABA Innocence Policies
    • 1. “Crime laboratories and medical examiner offices should be accredited, examiners should be certified, and procedures should be standardized and published to ensure the validity, reliability, and timely analysis of forensic evidence.”
    • 2. “Crime laboratories and medical examiner offices should be adequately funded.”
        • Report of the ABA Criminal Justice Section’s Ad Hoc Innocence Committee to Ensure the Integrity of the Criminal Process, Achieving Justice: Freeing the Innocent, Convicting the Guilty (Giannellli & Raeder eds. 2006)
  • ABA: Defense Experts
    • 3. “The appointment of defense experts for indigent defendants should be required whenever reasonably necessary to the defense.”
    • Ake v. Oklahoma, 470 U.S. 68 (1985)
        • due process right to expert for indigents
        • Giannelli, Ake v. Oklahoma: The Right to Expert Assistance in a Post-Daubert, Post-DNA World , 89 Cornell L. Rev. 1305 (2004)
  • ABA DNA Standards
    • Collection, preservation & retention
    • Pretrial disclosure
    • Defense testing & retesting
    • Admissibility of DNA evidence
    • Post-conviction testing
    • Charging persons by DNA profile
    • DNA databases
  • Part III: Testing of DNA Evidence
    • Standard 3.1: Testing laboratories
    • 3.2 Testing & interpretation of DNA evidence
    • 3.3 Laboratory reports
    • 3.4 Consumptive testing
  • DNA Standards (cont.)
    • Accreditation every two years.
    • Written policies, including protocols for testing and interpreting test results.
    • Quality assurance procedures, including
      • audits,
      • proficiency testing, and
      • corrective action protocols.
    • Follow procedures designed to minimize cognitive bias when interpreting test results.
  • DNA Standards (cont.)
    • Accreditation every two years.
    • Written policies, including protocols for testing and interpreting test results.
    • Quality assurance procedures, including
      • audits,
      • proficiency testing, and
      • corrective action protocols.
    • Follow procedures designed to minimize cognitive bias when interpreting test results.
  • Conclusion
    • “ To put the point more bluntly: if the state does not test the scientific evidence with which it seeks to convict defendants, it should forfeit the right to use it.”
      • Redmayne, Expert Evidence and Criminal Justice 139 (2001)