A Discouraging Omen: A Critical Evaluation of the Approved Uniform Language for Testimony and Reports for the Forensic Latent Print Discipline
27 Pages Posted: 9 Jul 2018 Last revised: 23 Aug 2018
Date Written: July 5, 2018
The theme of the 2018 Georgia State University Law Review symposium is the Future of Forensic Science Reform. In this Article, I assess the prospects for reform through a critical evaluation of a document published in February 2018 by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), the Approved Uniform Language for Testimony and Reports for the Forensic Latent Print Discipline (ULTR). I argue that this document gives reason to be concerned about the prospects for reform of forensic science. In Part I, I discuss the background of the ULTR. In Part II, I undertake a critical evaluation of the ULTR. In Part III, I conclude by discussing why the importance of the ULTR extends beyond merely one document and one discipline to implicate the future of forensic science reform more generally.
Keywords: fingerprint, testimony, standards, decision, reporting, forensic, Department of Justice, uniform language
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