Karen Lowe testimony (forensic investigator)

Discussion in 'Witness Testimonies and Closing Arguments' started by Chiquita71, Jun 4, 2011.

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  1. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    :tyou:

    JB: is bringing up his previous objections

    HHJP: we have done that at the Frye hearing, all you have to do is object. The state has to lay a foundation like they do with all witnesses, we don't do a mini Frye hearing we all ready did that.

    JB: no of course...we need to do some voir dire...we are intitiled to voir dire the witness to see if the witness meets the qualifications.

    HHJP: if they did not have qualifications...but we are not going to have a mini Frye hearing. I will note your motion. To exclude the post mortum banding and the unreliablity of scientific...or some defect in the predicate I will allow you to voir dire but we already had a frye hearing.

    JB: we feel that voir dire the witness at that time would help the jury...methodology employed.

    HHJP: an expert may testify with their opinions...that is what that talks about, correct?

    JB: ?

    HHJP: okay

    JB: am I not allowed to voir dire the witness or will the court give me some type of indication?

    HHJP: what are you trying to voir dire the witness on?

    JB: methodology...

    HHJP: we had a frye hearing on that...no. Unless she testifies to something totally different as to her qualifications...as I remember you did not have any objections during the frye hearing. Your objections were based on the idea this was new and novel evidence. We have established you cannot have a mini frye hearing.

    JB: her qualifications she was questioned about that, we maintain our position.

    HHJP: you can maintain your position. I have ruled. If they don't lay a predicate and the witness testifies...and for whatever reason...I have ruled and we have wasted enough time on that. Let's bring in the jury.
     
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  3. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    The witness is explaining her credentials.

    JA: how long ago that you became qualified as an examiner?

    13 years

    JA: ever been called to testify?

    44 testimony

    JA: how many juristictions?

    federal, state and local area

    JA: how many time for hair?

    I don't track it that way but most have a least touched on hair

    JA: your honor this is an expert on trace evidence, specifically hair

    HHJP: you can have a small voir dire as to her expertise.

    JB: is going to question this witness about her being an expert "or not."
     
  4. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JB: miss lowe the topics you will cover today. the amount of training you received is a six month course.

    objection
    overruled

    six months yes

    JB: the course you have taken on this topic there are a total of three or was it just that course.

    on the job training

    JB: and only six months contained this part

    yes

    JB: only read articles

    articles and case work

    JB: you render an opinion?

    correct

    JB: your on the job training is you giving an opinion

    objection
    sustained

    JB: no further questions

    (nice try Jose) :thumb:
     
  5. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA: the history of the science of hair banding

    the late 1700's in the USA since the 1930's

    JA: process?

    three steps: collection, identification and comparison. Does with a microscope, a comparasion microscope are two high powered microscope...kind of like a split screen so I can compare the samples...if a characteristic is the same as another I can identifiy it is like the other.

    JA: please give some info regarding how this works.

    (I missed a big explanation)

    JA: they do these examinations around the world?

    yes

    JA: in the literature is there something about decomp and the hair

    yes

    JA: history of that?

    1988 Petraco, an evaluation of the morphology...they looked at hairs at all the growth stages...the portion of the hair the keratin was hardened...evaluation of human hair...journal of forensic sciences...can nuclear dna...enzyme mimicks one of the characterists of human decomp...
     
  6. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA: the original paper from 1988...

    yes

    JA: the last paper you talked about: hairs in evironments...

    none of the hairs in that studies showed any changes.

    JA: all of these studies are they all published?

    yes

    JA: does the research reveal what causes the hair band?

    no, we are not sure exactly what causes it just what the microscopic appearance is

    JA: is there any indication that this artifact is created something other than the contact between the hair and the decomposing body.

    ?

    JA: may I approach the witness, this is a poster prepared by your lab for educational purposes, would it help you?

    yes it would

    JA: (bringing over a poster for visual reference while the witness explains a method that is used to determine if a hair is from a human cadaver.)
     
  7. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    Karen Lowe explaining what is observed in hair analysis

    jurors view photos of hairs.
     
  8. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    The top show the three growth stages: pigment production all the way through in the first stage, it was still actively growing, within the folicle...

    JA: internal root sheath?

    within your scalp. so the outer portion of the hair...if you have pulled out a hair that is why. The portion that is still on the scalp...the keratin...keeps it soft.

    This hair has completed the cycle and has shed...kind of looks like a q tip...if I see this hair I know it has been naturally shed....

    JA: is that because they are shed before death

    objection
    overruled

    they may still be in the head and not shed yet. it is thought because the keratin has hardened it is not as moldable. Still in the andogyn phase...the portion above the band had hardened and what is underneath is still soft.

    JA: the transistion phase between what is still growing and what is hard and set

    may be darkened and come to a point. The paper by lynch. Something similar...

    JA: this appearance according to lynch...

    this appearance has not been replicated by andogyn hairs....

    last is a brush like appearance, sometimes this also has a reddish brown...a later stage of decomp...so any of these characteristics could be called characteristics of decomp.

    JA: nothing else
     
  9. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    if you see those characteristics in the hair we know it is a part of decompositon. Some of the articles mentioned where the band was found, it is a couple of mm from the root band but it does not have to be that measurement to be concidered post mortum root banding.

    JA: two dimentions?

    three dimentions

    JA: ?

    correct

    JA: what actual training do you do, to recognize post mortum root banding?

    those are covered in the training period plus the cases you work.

    JA: are you able to give a guesstamate how many hairs you have seen with post mortum banding?

    I don't keep track...but there have been a fair number of cases

    JA: more than a hundred less?

    dont want to guess

    JA: were those hairs already know to be from a person who is deceased?

    this is the only case where I had a sample outside of the ...usually they are items from the person who is deceased...

    JA: how often have you seen the banding?

    ?

    JA: again

    in the cases where the decomp was noted, yes.
     
  10. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA asked if she was asked to do the work on the case of Caylee Maire. She said yes. Jeff wants to show her states exhibit...

    she does recognize her lab markings. Jeff is showing to the witness another, and she has the same response: she recognizes the exhibit by her markings. JA, is asking this about several items, the response is the same.
     
  11. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA: is giving the witness one of the hairs she was given to identify. He would like to move that into evidence.

    HHJP: defense?

    JB: no objections (Casey looked at Jose)

    JA: want to show you exhibit "it"

    yes

    JA: a known sample you submitted?

    HHJP: what says the defense?

    JB: (sadly) no objections

    JA: exhibit iw for identification

    yes

    JA: That was from Cindy Anthony?

    yes

    JA: George

    lab markings and my initials...
     
  12. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA: were submitted a hair brush?

    yes a hair brush and comb

    JA: found hairs?

    on the brush

    HHJP: entered into evidence

    Hear that Casey? That is the forensic evidence of what you did to Caylee being entered into evidence...as FACT. :)

    JA: did you find human hairs in the exhibit?

    yes

    JA: how many?

    I have to resort to my notes

    JA: go ahead.
     
  13. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    a least ten items had ten or more hairs.

    JA: any of the hairs that were examined did you find any that had apparent decomp

    one hair

    JA: which of your numbers was it Q12

    JA: is this the item?

    it is

    JA: what did you find?

    the hair in Q12 was caucasion that had the characteristics of post mortum banding.

    JA: did you examine that in the manner you described?

    micro scope and comparasion scope

    JA: three dee?

    yes

    JA: color

    light to medium brown...nine inches long.

    JA: any other hairs have the post mortum banding or changes?

    no

    JA: any other of those hairs in sample can you conclude they were from the same person

    I was looking for decomp and then compared from a hair from Caylee

    JA: compare Caylee and Casey

    the hair in Q12 was microscop dissimilar as one belonging to Casey...the hair brush was similar...due to a known sample...

    JA: compare to Cindy Anthony?

    only Casey

    JA: it was nine inches?

    yes

    JA: do you have an opinion about the hair found in states exhibit shows apparent deomp?

    it has the banding similar to the root in the poster and this is characteristic of human decomp

    JA: ?

    it has not been shown to be found under other circumstances

    JA: ?

    I preserved the portions that showed the darkened portions and sent some out for additional analysis

    JA: ?

    that was mounted on another slide and kept for analysis
     
  14. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA is asking Ms. Lowe to open a package and take a look inside. She does recognize her lab markings and initials. She says there are two tubes in a clear plastic box.

    HHJP: what says the defense

    JB: no objections

    HHJP: received in evidence states numbered...

    JA: ask you to explain some terminology "apparent?"

    because we can't say that the only reason we might see this charactoristis...is decomp and we use apparent to be more conservative.
     
  15. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JB: you discussed the history of mico analysis...I guess you can trace it back to the 1930s

    correct

    JB: FBI labs learned a lot along the way

    correct

    JB: people's hair had changed

    ?

    JB: things have changed

    hair comes down to comparitve biology and really that hasn't changed

    JB: what has changed is the FBI's position?

    hair has never been for positive idenification

    objection
    sustained

    JB: now you have cited articles you have read

    yes

    JB: four

    specifically root banding

    JB: asked about a report she read

    yes I have

    JB: that was organized by congress?

    yes

    JB: the national academy of sciences is respected?

    not all of them are scientists I know that

    objection

    JB: may I finish?

    (side bar) HHJP: sounds weary to me. I don't blame him.
     
  16. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JA: has he indicated what portion he wants to question her about.

    HHJP: no he hasn't

    JB: no scientifically accepted...(reading from paper)

    HHJP: mr Baez if you are going to read at a rapid rate you will not have a record sir, nothing to review.

    JB: that micro scop...hair analysis is highly unreliable in places where there is a ...match...the studies alone are of limited probative value...the committe found...nuclear dna....can be used in tandum but must be added to one anothers value but no studies specifically to quantify...

    HHJP: you need her to get to recognize it...but she is not trying to say that...she said that she is not saying this came from this person and this person alone. Let's see if she first recognizes it...

    JA: it is clearly not scientific...I ask it be proferred...

    HHJP: we are not going to talk about what court cases said...a journal...whether she recognizes that...

    JB: I want to question her on those topics

    HHJP: no one says you can't but you don't pull something out and start reading...you didn't even have the document

    JB: ...the lack of science in her methodology...


    Hey, do you think Jose can trick this witness into saying that what she does for a living "lacks methodology" and is "non science?"

    Let's watch and see! :laughcry:
     
  17. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    Jose asked a big long question and the witness said she is not aware of such. The judge asked if her lab did that and she said "I don't believe so, no."
     
  18. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    Jose asks if the witness knows Micheal Malone, and does he still work for the FBI. She says she is familiar with Micheal Malone but does not know if he still works for the FBI. Jose is asking the witness if she is familiar that Micheal Malone testified in a case where the microscopic characteristics came into play where the person was later aquitted.

    She does not believe that was improper, she has not seen the transcript...

    Jose has found that they are not allowed to say that a hair definitely comes from a person. She has agreed with that. She said we can only say probably. They take a conservative stance.

    Jose is bringing up another case where a person who does the same job as the witness, testified in a case and said they could definitely connected the hairs to a certain person and later it was found that you can't do that and so the person on trial got off.

    HHJP: got VERY upset and told Jose we won't be having another case on trial here, that Jose can ask her about her methods and whatnot but to stay away from "trying" other cases other than this one.

    Jose is back to questioning the witness again.
     
  19. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JB: no further questions (yay!)

    JA: is making objections.

    HHJP: if he wants to bolster her testimony he can. ....can be brought out on redirect.

    JA: ...If I could finish? (Jose interrupts)

    HHJP: I know it is Saturday morning but I think I have made myself abundantly clear and I think Mr. Baez heard me.

    JB: I will not be trying other cases...

    HHJP: you mentioned something about the menendez case, is there something in particular you want to use that for?

    JB: no judge...it is just authoritative in this...

    HHJP: okay. all right let's return the jury
     
  20. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    Jose is talking about how they were discussing the history of micro scopic analysis and then the National Academy of Sciences...

    So far the witness has agreed.

    JB: you consider them as authoritive?

    yes

    JB: they were highly critical on the area of micro scopic analysis Were THEY NOT?

    hair examinations are never the means of identification. the criticizism is point out with what we agree. hair is not a positive means of idientification. I don't disagree with what is in the report it is a limitation.

    JB: nuclear dna and not mitichrondrial dna?

    yes(longer but yes)

    JB: nuclear is more...than mitichrondrial...

    ?

    JB: ?

    objection
    sustained

    JB: she has certain knowledge...

    HHJP: I have sustained the objection

    JB: are you aware of...strike that...as we were explaining this to the jury that is the reason why you can not testify and will not testify that one hair comes from one individual...

    Jose just said "Pwobwem" for problem...he just did it again while I typed that...anywho...Jose is trying to get the witness to say they do not use hair banding as a way to identify a certain person...

    (they do that with other methods I am sure and that will come in but Jose is jumping the gun hoping to get this confused)

    and the witness has done nothing but agree with. And so all he can do is keep on asking her about the work she has done and saying things like: You don't know...

    you dont know where the red fern grows? you don't know how my cooking goes...you don't know...
     
  21. Chiquita71

    Chiquita71 New Member

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    JB: you don't know how often it comes up

    Jose is lost in this questioning...this is based on a handful of studies...

    she says and training...Jose is trying to discredit her to make her seem like...

    "and all you have done is these few studies..."
     
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