At least eight middle school kids in Ohio could face felony assault charges depending on the results of a forensic investigation.
The actress testified as part of a push to get more states to adopt the federal Sexual Assault Survivors' Bill of Rights Act.
Look closely. Can you see it?
If you were to judge only by what's shown on detective-procedural television shows like CSI, you might think forensic investigations and crime lab results are virtually infallible. But from time to time, a government study comes along to point out how that's frequently far from the complete truth.
I guess on balance it's a good thing that we're finally reassessing these types of evidence, but ideally the caution and humility we're now seeing would come a lot earlier in the process -- perhaps even before the expert takes the stand in a serious criminal case.
Forensic science is a rigorous and demanding subject. Students who wish to enter this field need to be ready to put the time into academic work and also seek internships that provide practical experience and a competitive edge when entering the job market. Those who do will have the potential for a rewarding career and an exciting opportunity to contribute to society in a direct and meaningful way.
All of us--whether as jurors, or even just as observers of the court system--should keep ever-vigilant eyes on the quality of the evidence used to convict our fellow citizens of crimes.