FBI overstated forensic hair matches in nearly all trials before 2000
By Spencer S. Hsu April 18 at 5:44 PM
The Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000.
Of 28 examiners with the FBI Laboratory’s microscopic hair comparison unit, 26 overstated forensic matches in ways that favored prosecutors in more than 95 percent of the 268 trials reviewed so far, according to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) and the Innocence Project, which are assisting the government with the country’s largest post-conviction review of questioned forensic evidence.
The cases include those of 32 defendants sentenced to death. Of those, 14 have been executed or died in prison, the groups said under an agreement with the government to release results after the review of the first 200 convictions.
…The review confirmed that FBI experts systematically testified to the near-certainty of “matches” of crime-scene hairs to defendants, backing their claims by citing incomplete or misleading statistics drawn from their case work.
In reality, there is no accepted research on how often hair from different people may appear the same.
And of course there will be no consequences for these people whose actions led to the incarceration of hundreds for many years, and the death of at least 14.
He falls off the horse and is lying on the ground. LONG before any cop gets there you can clearly see him put his hands behind his back in a completely submissive “I surrender” posture.
So naturally the first cop to get there kicks him in the face.
While the next cop kicks him in the balls and then a bunch of them begin to punch him.
of them needs to be fired, arrested, and criminally charged. This shit has got to stop.
This is what happens when you give all power to the State.
This is what happens when you shield government employees from responsibility and liability for their actions.
This is what happens when you militarize the police force.
Combine this with the execution of Walter Scott by Officer Michael Slager in South Carolina and one can easily see why police are agitating to limit the public’s and media’s right to film any and all encounters.
…The case was brought by the attorneys general of 26 states seeking to stop the president’s decision to grant quasi-legal status and work permits to millions of illegal immigrants. The controversy that angered Judge Hanen involved the timing of the president’s new measures. Administration lawyers told the court that the first part of the president’s action, expansion of DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, was scheduled to begin Feb. 18, 2015. The second part, known as DAPA, or Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents, was scheduled to go into effect in mid-May.
In court arguments, Hanen specifically asked the administration lawyers whether the Department of Homeland Security would begin implementing DACA before Feb. 18. They said no. Hanen therefore issued an injunction temporarily stopping DACA on Feb. 16, two days before it was scheduled to go into effect. At that point, Hanen thought he had stopped things while he considered the larger issues of the lawsuit, which focus on the constitutionality of Obama’s action.
The judge was stunned when, on March 3, administration lawyers filed a “Defendant’s Advisory” admitting that the administration had begun implementing the expanded DACA program back in November, and had in fact granted new protections and work permits to “approximately 100,000 people” by the time administration lawyers told the judge nothing was happening.
Rolling Stone magazine retracted its article about a brutal gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity after the release of a report on Sunday that concluded the widely discredited piece was the result of failures at every stage of the process.
The report, published by the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and commissioned by Rolling Stone, said the magazine failed to engage in “basic, even routine journalistic practice” to verify details of the ordeal that the magazine’s source, identified only as Jackie, described to the article’s author, Sabrina Rubin Erdely.
On Sunday, Ms. Erdely, in her first extensive comments since the article was cast into doubt, apologized to Rolling Stone’s readers, her colleagues and “any victims of sexual assault who may feel fearful as a result of my article.”
Something bad may have happened at some point, sometime, somewhere to that young lady, we will never know, but the article is a hoax, a complete lie and fabrication.
US WIMP-OUT ON IRAN DEAL?
France claims Kerry team caved to
keep Iranians at the table, get a deal
US reportedly backed down on initial goals in Iran talks
U.S. negotiators reportedly lowered the bar for their own goals during talks over Iran’s nuclear program in response to resistance from the Tehran team. And, on the heels of a framework deal being announced in Switzerland, France’s top diplomat on Friday admitted his country had initially held out for firmer terms.
The emerging reports indicate the U.S. team, led by Secretary of State John Kerry, gradually backed down over the course of the talks as Iran’s delegation dug in. The Wall Street Journal, citing current and former U.S. representatives at the discussions, claimed the White House had initially hoped to persuade Iran to dismantle much of the country’s nuclear infrastructure when talks started in late 2013, only to be told categorically that Iran would not do so.
The commandant of the Marine Corps told lawmakers that Marines who disarmed before departing Sanaa, Yemen during an embassy evacuation last month did so on the orders of U.S. Central Command and State Department officials.
Gen. Joseph Dunford fielded hard-edged questions on the mission Tuesday morning from Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., during a hearing before the House Armed Services Committee. Kline, a retired Marine officer, is the author of a letter to the State and Defense departments demanding detailed answers about a controversial order to Marines to destroy their weapons and depart the country unarmed.
(CNN)”Hey! His head is bleeding! Yo, his head is bleeding!” a bystander screams.
Martese Johnson is lying face-down on the pavement, blood flowing from his forehead. He was injured when Virginia alcohol control agents took him to the ground, trying to arrest him for public intoxication and obstruction of justice.
As he’s pinned, video captures him yelling: “I go to UVA! … You f****** racists! What the f***? How did this happen?”
An agent can be heard telling the student to stop fighting.
The video does not show the moments leading up to the arrest. But many say it’s the latest example of excessive force by officers against a black man.
Denied entry at a bar
The incident started when Johnson, 20, was turned away from a bar during St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.
Virginia Alcohol Beverage Control agents approached him and decided to “further detain the individual based on their observations and further questioning,” the agency said.
The proper response to a possibly tipsy 20 year old kid trying to get in a bar on St. Pats is to laugh and say “nice try”, not tackle him and handcuff him.
This is what fascism looks like, boys and girls: Official Alcohol Agents beating the shit out of people trying to get a drink.
Starbucks wants its baristas to talk to you about race
Starbucks to encourage baristas to discuss race relations with customers
CEO Howard Schultz is encouraging his employees to bring up the hot-button issue — his latest foray into controversial topics.
Starbucks SBUX -0.58% CEO Howard Schultz has never shied away from involving his company in controversial debates, whether those debates are about same-sex marriage, or gun control, or U.S. government gridlock.
But the executive, who oversees a coffee empire with 4,700 U.S. stores, has now taken on arguably the most polarizing political debate in the United States: race relations.
Starbucks published a full page ad in the New York Times on Sunday — a stark, black, page with a tiny caption “Shall We Overcome?” in the middle, and the words “RaceTogether” with the company logo, on the bottom right. The ad, along with a similar one on Monday in USA Today, is part of an initiative launched this week by the coffee store chain to stimulate conversation and debate about the race in America by getting employees to engage with customers about the perennially hot button subject.
Beginning on Monday, Starbucks baristas will have the option as they serve customers to hand cups on which they’ve handwritten the words “Race Together” and start a discussion about race. This Friday, each copy of USA Today — which has a daily print circulation of almost 2 million and is a partner of Starbucks in this initiative — will have the first of a series of insert with information about race relations, including a variety of perspectives on race. Starbucks coffee shops will also stock the insert.
Why does everything, every single act in life, have to be a political statement to some people?
…about the Senators’ letter to those mean, nasty old mullahs! Somebody might have REALLY taken offense and skipped their party!
First Lady celebrates Iranian New Year at the White House
…1. Celebrating culture
To introduce Obama, University of Maryland student Ashley Azmoodeh spoke about her own family’s connection to the holiday and its importance.
“The most memorable celebration from my childhood, one that we continue to celebrate annually, is Nowruz, meaning ‘New Day,’” Azmoodeh said.
The First Lady paid homage to the holiday by noting its long history and cultural significance for people around the world.
“For more than 3,000 years, families and communities in the Middle East, Asia and all around the world, including here in the United States, have celebrated this holiday to mark the renewal of the Earth in spring time,” Obama said.
US Producer Price Index down 0.5% in Feb vs. up 0.3% expected
U.S. producer prices unexpectedly fell in February on weak trade margins, pointing to muted inflation pressures that could argue against an anticipated June interest rate hike from the Federal Reserve.
The Labor Department said on Friday its producer price index for final demand fell 0.5 percent after dropping 0.8 percent in January. It was the fourth straight monthly decline in the PPI.
One of the weapons used in February’s terror attack in Copenhagen was an M95 rifle that had previously been stolen from the home of a Danish Home Guard (Hjemmeværnet) member.
As a result, the Home Guard has now decided that it will temporarily require all Home Guard members to turn in the bolts to their rifles, making them unable to be fired.
Over 4,300 volunteer members have a Home Guard issued weapon and they now have until March 30th to turn in their bolts, which will be stored in central depots across the country. The military service says it will then implement a long-term solution for dealing with members’ weapons.
“In light of the tragic events on February 14-15, 2015, the Home Guard is implementing these security measures until the Home Guard has found the proper solution,” Home Guard General Major Finn Winkler said in a statement.
In addition to being asked to disarm their rifles, the Home Guard members will also be subjected to periodic visits from controllers who will check that the weapons are stored safely and properly.
I’m not sure how they still manage to consider them ‘weapons’ when the bolts are removed, unless Denmark has some sort of State Inspection Code for clubs (and pretty piss-poor clubs at that); well they probably do have such a code, now that I’m thinking about it.
*They’ve now adopted the British definition of Home Guard: you don’t. Your home is now the Intruder’s Castle in the eyes of the State.
Put CCTV in EVERY home: Householders should help us trap burglars, says Scotland Yard chief
Bernard Hogan Howe said people installed their CCTV cameras too high
This meant only the tops of the criminals’ heads were caught on film
Families should install their own cameras to help catch burglars, he said
The Met chief said Britain needed more cameras to help fight crime
By CHRIS GREENWOOD FOR THE DAILY MAIL
PUBLISHED: 10:52 EST, 8 March 2015 | UPDATED: 03:12 EST, 9 March 2015
Homeowners should consider fitting CCTV to trap burglars, the country’s most senior police officer declared yesterday.
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said police forces needed more crime scene footage to match against their 12million images of suspects and offenders.
And he called on families and businesses to install cameras at eye level – to exploit advances in facial recognition technology.
Because you see they have no interest in preventing crime; only in tidying up some of the mess afterwards.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House counsel’s office was not aware when Hillary Rodham Clinton was secretary of state that she relied solely on a private email account.
That’s what a person familiar with the matter is telling The Associated Press on a condition of anonymity without authorization to speak on the record.
The person says Clinton’s exclusive use of personal email was inconsistent with guidance given to agencies that official business should be conducted on official email accounts.
The person says the counsel’s office only became aware when some of her messages were turned over to congressional investigators looking into the Benghazi attack. The person said the White House counsel’s office then asked the State Department to ensure that her email records were properly archived.
So nobody over there ever noticed that any of the emails from her weren’t from “@state.gov”.
Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov was shot to death in central Moscow late Friday.
The head of the Moscow police department is on the scene, according to TASS news agency. Moscow police sources say there were witnesses to the shooting who are now being questioned.
“Today at approximately 11:15 PM Nemtsov was walking with a female companion along the Bolshoy Kamenniy bridge. A car approached, from which several shots were fired. Four shots hit Nemtsov in the back,” Ministry of Internal Affairs spokesperson Elena Alekseeva said.
…Nemtsov was 55 years old. He was a former deputy prime minister in the Russian government under President Boris Yeltsin. At one point he was considered a likely presidential candidate. After Vladimir Putin became the country’s president, Nemtsov actively criticized the administration and its policies.
CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel will take on Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia in the first mayoral runoff election in Chicago history on April 7.
A fiery Garcia, who finished second to Emanuel, criticized Emanuel on catering to special interests and failing to do enough on crime an education in a speech to his supporters at the Alhambra Palace in the West Loop.
Crime an education.
Yep, layers and layers of editors and fact-checkers.
It will be nice to see Rahm crawl back into the fetid little sewer he came out of.
…The Islamic State, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), follows a distinctive variety of Islam whose beliefs about the path to the Day of Judgment matter to its strategy, and can help the West know its enemy and predict its behavior. Its rise to power is less like the triumph of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt (a group whose leaders the Islamic State considers apostates) than like the realization of a dystopian alternate reality in which David Koresh or Jim Jones survived to wield absolute power over not just a few hundred people, but some 8 million.
Via our dear friend Tim, who shows us that once again that “Utopia” is but Latin for “nightmare”
That’s one explanation: that no sane person shouts, ‘Stuff your pension!’ and clears off to a field near Inverness. Another is that designs for living always end in tears, or worse. From the Russian Revolution to Jonestown, programmes for human happiness come a cropper. It’s best to muddle along as we are, not because human beings are morons or suckers, or traitors to the cause, but because life is meant to be messy, muddled, contrary, comic. In any event, when the balloon goes up, I have my plan ready. I shall hide in the stockroom at Morrison’s (Strood branch), spending what’s left of eternity scoffing their individual fruit pies.
Read the whole delusional, pathetic, and tragi-comic tale. Keep it in mind every time some Government Expert or PhD-wielding Academic insists that we all must follow their path to Enlightenment.