Pacific Standard Bettina Chang June 5, 2014
You’re familiar with the scene: A skeleton lies, inscrutable, on a table in a dimly lit medical examiner’s office. The M.E. pokes around a bit, the camera zooms in dramatically on the clavicle, then she rattles off a few implausibly detailed observations as detectives take notes.
The typical crime procedural depicts this as a well-honed process, but the reality is rarely so simple. A new study published in Science and Justice examines how the complex nature of forensic analysis and pressures on forensics experts could lead them to incorrect conclusions.
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