Thursday, April 25, 2013

Hair analysis evidence: Wrongful Convictions Blog's Phil Locke tells us why this long accepted evidence about to join "compositional bullet lead analysis" as “Junk Science” - leaving far too many potential miscarriages of justice in its track.

POST: "Hair analysis evidence about to join CBLA (compositional  bullet lead analysis) as "junk science," by Phil Locke, published by the Wrongful Convictions Blog on April 21, 2013.

GIST: "The FBI and the Department of Justice have announced that they are beginning an unprecedented review of over 10,000 cases involving microscopic hair analysis evidence.  They have conceded that, since at least 1985, FBI agents have been providing hair evidence testimony in court that is not scientifically supportable. ........ The case reviews will be assisted by the Innocence Project and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The last time the FBI abandoned a forensic practice was in 2005 when CBLA (compositional bullet lead analysis) was debunked because its premise is not scientifically supportable.  See previous WCB CBLA post here. The 2009 report by the National Academy of Sciences on the state of forensics in the US had this to say about hair analysis evidence -  “The report finds no scientific support for the use of hair comparisons for individualization in the absence of nuclear DNA.”

The entire post can be found at:


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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:

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Harold Levy: Publisher; The Charles Smith Blog.