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DNA - A Prosecutor’s Practice Notebook Inventory

Improper Interpretation of the Evidence

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There is more there than the prosecution is telling you.

The defense will argue that although the state's DNA analyst has told the jury there is a match in the DNA from the crime scene to defendant's DNA, this is only the DNA analyst's interpretation, and there are reasons to question that interpretation. For example, the DNA analyst's interpretation of stutters or artifacts as actual genetic information is, in reality, evidence of a mixture which the state's DNA analyst is overlooking. The defense case rests on the premise that the evidence, as described by the state's DNA analyst, is misleading whereas in reality, the DNA evidence shows something quite different than the prosecution is leading the jury to believe.

Additionally, the defense may argue:

  1. The database used to derive the match is flawed because the collection criteria and/or design were improper.
  2. The size of the database from which the match was calculated was too small.
  3. The relevant population substructure was not represented in the database.
  4. The statistical method used to interpret the typing results is flawed because error rates are not included in the calculations.

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