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DIAGNOSTICALLY DIFFICULT FORENSIC CASES and DRUG TESTS AND COMMON ERRORS IN TOXICOLOGY REPORTS

02:13:00

Mar 12, 2021 01:43 PM

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Speakers

Gregory J. Davis, MD, FCAP
Professor & Director, Division of Forensic Consultation Services @University of Kentucky College of Medicine
The presentation considers the purposes of a forensic autopsy or case review, focusing on cases in which the original forensic pathologist / medical examiner or other expert made a non-evidence-based diagnosis without scientific foundation, thereby catalyzing criminal charges or medical malpractice lawsuits. In many of these cases, simple searches of readily-available forensic literature, much of it in well-known book or journal form on most MEs shelves, could have prevented the defendant’s misery. The presentation will extrapolate from these cases to touch upon commonly encountered errors, confirmation biases, the logical fallacy of post hoc ergo propter hoc, as well as basic medical and forensic ethical principles to which all forensic scientists should adhere and be examined upon in criminal or civil proceedings. To quote Saukko and Knight: “over-interpretation […] regrettably still leads to instances of miscarriage of justice.”