Sunday, September 9, 2012

Donald Eugene Gates; Ron Williamson; Prof. Brandon L. Garrett's indictment of "Justice on the Hill." Huffington Post.

GIST: "Why didn't anyone tell Gates over a decade before that the hair analysis in his case was all wrong? In fact, the hair testimony was scientifically unsound. There is no research on how common microscopic hair characteristics are. Hair is not like DNA or even a fingerprint. Hairs vary quite a bit on the same person's body, which is why analysts would try to compare large sets of hair under a microscope. The FBI knew this well, having convened an entire symposium on the subject in the 1980s, to make clear that conclusions about hair comparisons must be extremely cautious. Yet analysts still crossed the line, and judges still let analysts offer exaggerated and scientific-sounding conclusions to the jury. I saw countless examples of cases just like Gates', when I researched the cases of the first 250 people exonerated by DNA tests for a book, Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong. I found that similarly overstated, unreliable, and invalid forensics were present in a majority of those criminal trials of the innocent. There were dozens more cases like Gates' involving botched hair comparisons."

The entire story 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.