From the summer of 1972 through 1975, Kenneth Wooden visited correctional facilities in thirty states where juveniles between the ages of five and sixteen were being held. During his research he uncovered an astoundingly high incidence of emotional and physical abuse, torture, and commercial exploitation of the children by their keepers, individuals who received public funds to care for them. After observing the brutal treatment of these youths, a significant number of whom were not criminals but runaways or mentally disabled, Wooden described the conditions in which these children lived in Weeping in the Playtime of Others
With the popularity of crime dramas like CSI focusing on forensic science, and increasing numbers of police and prosecutors making wide-spread use of DNA, high-tech science seems to have become the handmaiden of law enforcement. But this is a myth,asserts law professor and nationally known expert on police profiling David A. Harris. In fact, most of law enforcement does not embrace science—it rejects it instead, resisting it vigorously. The question at the heart of this book is why.
»» Eyewitness identifications procedures using simultaneous lineups—showing the witness six persons together,as police have traditionally done—produces a significant number of incorrect identifications.
»» Interrogations that include threats of harsh penalties and untruths about the existence of evidence proving the suspect’s guilt significantly increase the prospect of an innocent person confessing falsely.
»» Fingerprint matching does not use probability calculations based on collected and standardized data to generate conclusions, but rather human interpretation and judgment.Examiners generally claim a zero rate of error – an untenable claim in the face of publicly known errors by the best examiners in the U.S.
Failed Evidence explores the real reasons that police and prosecutors resist scientific change, and it lays out a concrete plan to bring law enforcement into the scientific present. Written in a crisp and engaging style, free of legal and scientific jargon, Failed Evidence will explain to police and prosecutors, political leaders and policy makers, as well as other experts and anyone else who cares about how law enforcement does its job, where we should go from here. Because only if we understand why law enforcement resists science will we be able to break through this resistance and convince police and prosecutors to rely on the best that science has to offer.Justice demands no less.
- Site Contents
- Stress Effects on Police
- Understanding Violence
- Abuse of Power
- Going backward: A trend toward authoritarianism>
- "Stand Your Ground">
- Prosecutor's Certainty>
- Innocents swept up in frenzy >
- He’s just "faking it” >
- Punitive approach>
- Police Brutality>
- Racial Profiling
- A Global Crisis>
- Locked up and restrained>
- Human Rights Abuses>
- Governments Mistreating Citizens>
- Civil liberties>
- "War on Terror" Errors and Effects>
- Systemic Corruption>
- Juvenile "Injustice"
- Prison Nation
- Neuroscience of law and justice
- Social psychology of justice
- Debating Approaches
- Ineffective and Outdated Methods
- Economic and Political Issues
- A Broad Cultural Background
- A Look at History
- Social Advances slideshow
- Index of all Links
- Index of all paper topics