"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: "Evidence-planting leads to exoneration of Iowa man," by anchor/reporter Laura Terrell, published by KCCL News on January 25, 2017;
SUB-HEADING: "An Iowa man was exonerated Monday after prosecutors said his drug conviction was based on evidence that had been planted by two former Des Moines police officers.
GIST: "Polk County Attorney John Sarcone confirmed to KCCI that a Polk County judge overturned Kyle Weldon’s drug conviction, which is now erased from his record. Des Moines Police held a press conference in December to announce allegations that Officers Joshua Judge and Tyson Teut had planted drug evidence. “It's just flat-out wrong, and we're not going to condone anything like that,” Polk County Attorney John Sarcone said. Officers arrested Weldon in January 2015. Court records show he had a clear container in his pants pocket, and the container was filled with a rocklike substance that tested positive for meth. Sarcone told KCCI that Judge and Teut planted the drug evidence in Weldon’s case file. Weldon pleaded guilty last February and spent 32 days in jail. The judge dismissed the drug charge, saying that "the guilty plea and conviction were based on improperly obtained evidence and misconduct by law enforcement." “We feel your frustration,” Des Moines police Sgt. Ryan Doty said. “We do a lot within this community to foster trust.” Doty said the Des Moines Police Department is disgusted and that it handed over any case Judge and Teut ever touched to the Polk County Attorney's Office for investigation. “We are talking hundreds and hundreds of cases,” Doty said. Weldon's case is the first and only confirmed evidence-planting case right now. Doty said that Des Moines police hope it will be the last. “When something like this happens, that puts that trust in jeopardy,” Doty said. “And everybody in this building takes that seriously, and everybody in this building is offended by that, and it's our mission that it doesn't happen again.” It is unclear why Kyle Weldon pleaded guilty in the first place. KCCI reached out to Weldon and his attorney, but both declined an interview. Weldon’s attorney sent a statement saying, in part, “Along with our partners at the Innocence Project of Iowa and the Midwest Innocence Project, we stand ready to further investigate other cases involving these officers, if and when it becomes necessary." The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is also conducting an independent investigation. Judge and Teut could face criminal charges after that investigation is complete."
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: http://www.thestar.com/topic/