Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Bite marks in Reason magazine

Reason magazine, the libertarian stronghold, picked up on the fanfare over Robert Lee Stinson's exoneration in Wisconsin despite the "expert" testimony of bite-mark analysis.

Marquette University dentist Dr. L. Thomas Johnson and a colleague are developing computer software they hope will “legitimize” bite mark analysis. The problem, as outlined in the article, is that critics say human skin changes and distorts imprints until they are nearly unrecognizable. As a result, courtroom experts end up offering competing opinions...

Since 2000, at least seven people in five states who were convicted largely on bite-mark identification have been exonerated, according to the Innocence Project.

See this article in USA Today for more on the attempts of the Marquette University dentist to build a database of bitemarks.

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