Past, Present, and Future of Forensic Science in the United States

Saturday, February 20, 2010: 8:30 AM-10:00 AM
Room 7B (San Diego Convention Center)
In 2004, Congress commissioned the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to undertake a long-awaited study to examine thoroughly and comprehensively the fundamental underpinnings of forensic scientific evidence and its applications in our criminal justice system under the Justice for All Act of 2004. A blue-ribbon committee, comprising scientists, academics, a retired federal judge, and other notables, convened in 2007 to study the forensic sciences. The NAS released its report "Strengthening Forensic Science in the United States: A Path Forward" on February 18, 2009. Its findings were staggering: “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.” In addition to addressing the key findings of the report, this session will provide a historical background of the forensic sciences and discuss the present issues in the field, court-based state-level solutions, and the role of the scientific community in federal legislative solutions.
Sarah P. Chu, Innocence Project
Norah Rudin, Independent Consultant
Defining the Science in Forensic Science
Larry A. Hammond, Osborn Maledon, P.A.
Forensic Science in the Courts: Issues and Solutions
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