News 03.24.11

Science Thursdays: Crime Labs Under Investigation for Inconsistent Results

As a result of inconsistent crime lab work, the US Army joins New York and North Carolina in instituting a review of cases, and courts in the US and UK consider how to deal with weak forensic evidence.  Here’s a roundup of forensic news:

The US Army Criminal Investigation Laboratory kept a three-year investigation of its poor laboratory practices

secret

.

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation has identified

74 cases

on top of the original 229 slated for review as a result of the NC crime laboratory’s poor scientific work.

A New York judge has been selected to preside over the

legal challenges

to evidence processed in the now shuttered drug unit of the Nassau County Crime Laboratory.

In separate cases, Pennsylvania courts will hear challenges on

arson and fingerprint evidence

.

UK courts will now consider a

pre-trial reliability test

for the admissibility of forensic evidence.

State budget cuts could eliminate

181 of the 600 staff

at New York City’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

A University of Virginia professor who studies wrongful convictions will release a new book this spring titled, ”

Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong

.”

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