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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    61

    The DNA found

    In the excitement to find DNA could this have happened in the Ramsey case?
    http://www.dailypress.com/news/local...lines-virginia
    IN MY OPINION

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    3,486

    DNA on trial

    Quote Originally Posted by FULTON
    In the excitement to find DNA could this have happened in the Ramsey case?
    http://www.dailypress.com/news/local...lines-virginia
    There are interesting articles pertinent to your concern discussed in a number of links, e.g.,see Peter Boyer, "New Yorker", DNA On Trial...also see the Chicago Tribune DNA stories discussing some factors, including Dr. Edward Blake, a well known DNA expert from California.

    I just last week followed a thought about possible problems relating to DNA after I saw one of the TV crime stories (It was on A&E "American Justice" or "Cold Case Files" and named "Murder in Paradise", I think). It told a story of the murder and rape of a young visitor to Hawaii at Christmas 1991. She was run down on her bike and taken away by the assailants. It occurred in a sparsely populated remote area. Tragicly, the very attactive and appealing victim died at a hospital following a long delay in getting professional care for her. Her lovely family and the shocking facts make this a heartwrenching story.

    Resolution apparently came when a young man came forward and implicated his brother who, in term, implicated two other young men. He identified the car they hit her with. The car had been repainted but damage consistent with the impact was in the corresponding spot on the bumper. No usable DNA results were found initially, but later a California DNA expert for the defense reported he found considerale DNA on a hospital bed sheet and that it matched none of the accused. There did not however, seem to be a "false confession" since it was a voluntary reporting of admissions that brought the matter to the authorities in the first place, and there was supporting evidence. Apparently the other facts were compelling as convictions resulted. There was a brief clip shown of the expert stating he had expected all charges to be dropped based on his DNA tests.

    I searched the expert, Dr Edward Blake, the case, and the subject of DNA forensics simply because I wondered about the possibility the DNA testing was wrong. I found some interesting tidbits reported in the things I read. For example: 1. The DNA was found on the sheet after being sent to the expert in California. 2.There is reportedly a sort of competition among experts to have more "exonerations" with Dr Blake quoted at one time as saying he had the most. 3.The DNA tests from Dr. Blake and the Innocence Project (Barry Scheck) are reportedly not placed in national data banks. (In Dr. Blake's case his lab is reported to be "voluntarily" unaccredited and data not eligible for inclusion.) 4. Not placing the data in DNA banks blocks connection with seperate past or future crimes by DNA results connected to the person tested. 5. One article suggests "_____'s objectivity went out the window years ago" that he tends to get emotionally caught up in legal cases. 6. One report suggests the Innocence Project is claiming an almost incredible 50% exoneration rate in cases in which usable DNA is tested. (This could be possible if those without the determination of actual innocence have dropped out along the way.)

    I am simply stating what I read and not at all suggesting any dishonesty by anyone. I could not possibly learn enough in a quick search to scratch the surface of the issue. But, I am well acquainted with the fact that wrong and possibly faked forensic testing has occurred over the years. I am likewise VERY much aware of the many valid exonerations by DNA and absolutely not a critic of the process. It does,however, appear that the simple fact of improved sampling and testing now allows DNA tests of minute levels of cells from very slight contact. Someday this could enable a "motivated" tester to almost always find alternative DNA. Sometimes it might even be his own!
    Last edited by Lacy Wood; 05-10-2005 at 08:07 AM. Reason: Identify DNA expert as a Defense witness

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    3,486

    Articles on forensics and DNA

    In case anyone wanted to pursue critical commentary on the DNA at trial matter, a good place to start is Michael Miner articles in the "Chicago Tribune".

    Google: Miner Boyer DNA trial Several articles will show up including a Nov 7, 2003, article with some relevant info.



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