Saturday, October 15, 2016

Prosecutorial misconduct: Gretel Kauffman asks in the Christian Scientist whether California's new law a model for curbing prosecutorial misconduct goes far enough?..."But legal experts say that while the Orange County debacle served as a catalyst of sorts for the legislative process, the new law reflects a larger, growing movement to hold prosecutors and others working within the criminal justice system accountable for their actions. Supporters of the law applaud it as a significant step toward curbing prosecutorial misconduct and the wrongful convictions that sometimes result. But there's no telling how effective the measure will ultimately be – and those on the other side of the fence worry that it could have damaging side effects. The National Registry of Exonerations, launched in 2012, has counted 1,894 Americans exonerated since 1989. Fifty-one percent of those wrongful convictions were due to official misconduct, occurring most commonly in homicide cases. A number of high-profile exoneration cases in recent years have drawn the public's attention to such misconduct, including instances of prosecutors withholding, or tampering with, exculpatory evidence."

Image result for "white elephant"

In the years since I started publishing this Blog I have become increasingly disturbed by the 'white elephant' in the room: Sheer, unadulterated, willful   misconduct in the criminal justice system - much  of it involving forensic evidence - committed by lab technicians,  pathologists, police officers, prosecutors and others.  Think Annie Dookhan; Think Sonia Farak; Think David Kofoed; Think Charles Smith; Think Ken Anderson;  I have therefore decided to run this image of a white elephant at the top of  applicable posts henceforth, to draw our reader's attention to  what I see as a major problem in all too many criminal justice system's - my own included.  Harold Levy; Publisher: The Charles Smith Blog;
"Reformers have for years recommended that all forensic labs be independent from law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies' and this is a key reform promoted by The Justice Project (2008). But fixing these problems is only half the answer' because half of the wrongful convictions attributed to misleading forensic evidence involved deliberate forensic fraud' evidence tampering' and/or perjury.
From "The Elephant in the Crime Lab," by co-authored by Sheila Berry and Larry Ytuarte; Forensic Examiner; Spring, 2009;


STORY:"Is California's new law a model for curbing prosecutorial misconduct," by Gretel Kauffman, published by The Christian Scientist, on October 5, 2016. (Gretel Kauffman ( a Christian Monitor staff reporter) is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame, where she earned a B.A. in American Studies. She has previously interned for NPR’s “On Point,” WXXI Public Broadcasting, and WBTA 1490, and was a correspondent for

SUB-HEADING: "Prosecutors in California who intentionally withhold or tamper with evidence may now face felony charges as a result of a new law signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last week."

The entire story can be found at:

PUBLISHER'S NOTE:  I am monitoring this case/issue. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog for reports on developments. The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic" section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at: Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at:  Please send any comments or information on other cases and issues of interest to the readers of this blog to:  
Harold Levy. Publisher; The Charles Smith Blog.