Satawa Law, PLLC
Forensic Science Cases have their own unique issues and challenges. That is because forensic sciences themselves are deeply flawed – how they were developed, how practitioners are trained, and how they work in real life. Real science,” starts with a hypothesis, and subjects that hypothesis to rigorous testing and experimentation to “falsify” or disprove it. In the landmark case of Daubert v Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 US 579, 113 SCt 2786, 125 LEd 2d 469 (1993), the Supreme Court noted that “Scientific methodology today is based on generating hypotheses and testing them to see if they can be falsified; indeed, this methodology is what distinguishes science from other fields of human inquiry.” 509US 579, at 593. Unlike “real” science done in an academic setting such as a university lab, most forensic sciences are not subject to hypothesis testing or falsification, or to any real peer review or rigorous scientific experimentation. This is because most forensic sciences were invented by law enforcement, and almost all of them are further developed and advanced by law enforcement alone. In fact, the majority of forensic scientists are police officers! This causes a host of problems, including a lack of any real standards for comparison or declaring matches. In other words, the forensic scientist knows a match between two foot prints, fibers, hairs, bite marks, or even fingerprints “when they see it” based on “their experience and training.”
Even more dangerous is that forensic sciences are fraught with what is called “confirmation bias.” That is the rather common sense phenomenon that human beings tend to find what we are looking for. Tell a forensic scientist that these sample hairs/fingerprints/bite marks, etc. are known samples from the suspect that the police believe committed the murder, see if they match the hairs/fingerprints/bite marks left at the crime scene, and naturally the odds that the tech will find a match increase substantially. Confirmation bias is why “real science” is always done double blind – where the lab tech does not even know which samples are the known samples and which are the test samples, let alone the ID of the samples themselves. Double blind experimentation is basically non-existent in forensic science, even in DNA testing.
Statistics have shown that in more than 50% of DNA exhonerations, invalidated or improper forensic science contributed to the wrongful conviction. Added to all of this is the well publicized report by the National Research Council in 2009 – i.e., National Resource Council, National Academy of Sciences, Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward (2009). On page one of the report, the NRC holds nothing back in its criticism of forensic science today: “The forensic science system, encompassing both research and practice, has serious problems that can only be addressed by a national commitment to overhaul the current structure that supports the forensic science community in this country.” (NSA report, P-1). Importantly, the NSA report was critical of “exaggerated” forensic expert testimony – which included claims of perfect accuracy, infallibility, or zero error rate.
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If your case involves this kind of forensic evidence, then you need an attorney who is a specialist in these matters. If you want to have a fighting chance for proving your innocence and preserving your future, then hiring an attorney who is highly experienced in forensic science is imperative. Make no mistake — attorneys who have the kind of knowledge and experience in forensic science are actually few and far between. Your attorney will need to present evidence which is even more scientifically convincing than the state has presented, and will need to have a thorough understanding of the science in order to do so.
Your Case Requires a Legal Specialist
The well known problems with forensic evidence do not stop the State from bringing such evidence against you — which has been largely manufactured through faulty scientific methods and questionable “expert” witnesses. Your attorney will have to bring in serious experts to counter the state’s witnesses, however even with true experts, your attorney must still be familiar with the true nature of forensic evidence. Forensic law examines evidence with a goal of determining how that evidence supports or disproves a legal case. In other words, your attorney must have a solid background in dealing with scientific truths as well as those found during the building of a case. A truly great criminal defense attorney understands fully how chemical, genetic, and physics-based techniques can help investigators obtain huge chunks of information from the most microscopic bits of evidence.
When the Stakes are High—Hire the Best
The Attorneys of Satawa Law have a solid reputation in criminal defense along with combined years of scientific case experience. Mark Satawa’s practice has a particular emphasis involving forensic evidence and DNA cases, and he has widespread familiarity in successfully defending scientific and medically intensive criminal allegations. Mr. Satawa has lectured extensively on criminal law and trial advocacy issues, including forensic evidence and DNA cases, and has the knowledge to thoroughly assess your case and all of its scientific complexities. When your life is on the line, do you really want to hire an attorney who is unfamiliar with many of the newest forensic information and techniques, or do you want an attorney who has a solid understanding of these issues? At Satawa Law, not only do we have the necessary experience and knowledge, we will fight aggressively for your rights and your future. Call Satawa Law today if you want the best in your corner.
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Our team of Southfield lawyers are ready to help defend your rights and protect your future. We understand the life-changing nature of these types of allegations. We never judge or assume; rather, we immediately start to try and determine the best way to win that case. We do that while providing our clients with the empathetic and compassionate guidance they need to get through this difficult time.
We have won the majority of the many cases we have defended at trial, and can use our extensive experience and experience to help you as well. Do not wait for the police or prosecutors to make the first move. Speak with our Southfield defense team now, and allow us to put our knowledge, skill, and expertise to good use.