The manual way of sorting out increasingly complex DNA mixtures can be overly simplistic—potentially leading to errors.
A federal study involving more than 100 crime laboratories came to that conclusion—six years ago. The “MIX13” study was published last year after some public criticism, and an April 2018 report by Forensic Magazine.
Now, the chief critic of the delay in publishing MIX13 says crime laboratories across the country should be undertaking wide-scale review of the questionable mixture cases using the latest computer software programs to get more accurate results.
Previous conclusions backing guilty verdicts may be confirmed, but there may also be potential innocence cases among the load, according to the paper in the journal Forensic Science International: Genetics.
“We must go back, detect and correct our mistakes,” writes Greg Hampikian, of Boise State University, the author. “This can all be done without any new wet lab work.”
Hampikian has been the most vocal critic of the persistence of the use of combined probability of inclusion, or CPI—a manual computational method to analyze complex mixtures.
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