Friday, July 6, 2012

Erroneous rape accusations: "Groundbreaking research: One out of every 10 rape allegations wrong?" by Forensic Psychologist Karen Franklin; Must Read.

STORY: "Groundbreaking research: One out of every 10 rape allegations wrong?" by Forensic Psychologist Karen Franklin published on "Forensic Psychologist", on July 3, 2012. (Thanks for the Wrongful Convictions Blog for pointing out this disturbing analysis);

GIST: "The most methodologically rigorous study to date, released in June, suggests that somewhere between 8 and 18 percent of men convicted of sexual assault may be innocent. The federally funded research project randomly sampled convictions in Virginia between 1973 and 1987, before DNA testing was widely available, and compared preserved physical evidence with the DNA profiles of convicted men. After poring through more than half a million cases, researchers found 422 sexual assault cases in which DNA evidence was preserved. In 8 percent (33) of those cases, the DNA evidence was exculpatory and supported exoneration. Because many of the DNA comparisons were inconclusive, this amounted to 18 percent of the cases in which it was possible to make a definitive determination one way or the other based on DNA analysis. (The data and the analyses are complex and not without flaws, so I recommend reading the study itself before relying on these numbers......... The complexities in understanding sexual assault patterns are mind-boggling, and can make your head spin. False convictions, false accusations, false retractions. And then there's the other end of the spectrum: A vast proportion of sexual assaults – probably somewhere between 85 and 95 percent – are still going unreported altogether. And when victims do come forward, prosecution is rare, and convictions even rarer. It's one gigantic mess, all around."

The entire post can be found at:


I am monitoring this case. 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.