Science Thursday



An Australian court scrutinizes a “body mapping” conviction, Scotland releases a report on a fingerprint case from 1997, and scientists in the Netherlands develop an eye color DNA tool.  Here’s a roundup of this week’s forensics news:


The Scottish government released a report on the 

public inquiry into the fingerprint misidentification

 in the Shirley McKie case and made key recommendations to avoid these “shortcomings” in the future. One key recommendation by the inquiry body is that “

fingerprint evidence should be recognised as opinion evidence

, not fact.”


forensic advisory board was created 

to guide the reopening of a shuttered New York crime lab. However, defense attorneys and the president of the local Bar Association 

question its composition



A growing number of forensic experts have begun to question many of the 

assumptions underlying the diagnosis of Shaken Baby Syndrome



Scientists in the Netherlands have developed IrisPlex, a 

DNA tool that can be used to predict eye color

 with 94% accuracy for blue or brown eyes.


An Australian court 

granted a new trial to a man convicted of two robberies based on “body mapping,”

 where experts used the distorted and poor quality images on security cameras from both robbery locations to analyze the perpetrator’s  body, head and face shape and compared to the defendant’s body characteristics.


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