Bite-mark evidence: Challenges to its reliability in the news

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Backwoods, Jun 17, 2013.

  1. Backwoods

    Backwoods New Member

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    Couple of interesting articles about the problems with the analysis of bite marks as evidence and about convictions based largely on bite-mark evidence that have been overturned:

    Read much more at: http://www.macon.com/2013/06/16/2520211/ap-impact-bites-derided-as-unreliable.html#storylink=topnext

    Summaries of some of the cases follow at: http://www.macon.com/2013/06/16/2520226/men-wrongly-convicted-or-arrested.html#wgt=rcntnews
     
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  3. ohiogirl

    ohiogirl New Member

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    Although Brewer's conviction was vacated while he awaited execution in 2001, he was held in prison until 2008 because the prosecutor said he was going to retry him. Brooks also wasn't released until 2008.

    West, of Hattiesburg, defended his testimony by saying that he never told jurors that Brooks and Brewer were the killers, only that they bit the children, and that he's not responsible for juries who found them guilty. He told the AP that DNA has made bite-mark analysis almost obsolete and that he no longer practices it.

    ---

    Read more here: http://www.macon.com/2013/06/16/2520226/men-wrongly-convicted-or-arrested.html#storylink=cpy

    Don't you just love it when they can't admit they were wrong.
     
  4. mysteriew

    mysteriew A diamond in process

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    I've always been a little leery about bite mark evidence. There would be a lot of variables on the angle when the bite was being administered, the elasticity of the skin, the skill of the person doing the analysis.

    I would think that it might point toward a particular person, but not definitively identify them like DNA or fingerprints.

    Dental identification wouldn't be affected in identifying remains would it?
     
  5. Nova

    Nova New Member

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    I wouldn't think so. Identifying teeth is one thing (since teeth are more or less stationary until they are removed); identifying a bite on malleable skin is quite another.
     

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