Commentary

Cold Cases Freeze: Law Enforcement Locked Out of DNA Database Used for Investigative Genealogy After Consumers Object to Being Genetic Informants

By Nanci K. Carr
Full Text PDF Abstract California’s infamous Golden State Killer, Joseph James DeAngelo, a serial killer and rapist, committed a string of crimes during the 1970s and 1980s, and avoided capture for more than 40 years until genetic data available online led to his arrest. His capture caused users of popular testing services such as Ancestry and 23andMe to question whether…
Commentary

Who Wrote This?: Modern Forensic Authorship Analysis as a Model for Valid Forensic Science

By Janet Ainsworth and Patrick Juola
Introduction On September 5, 2018, the New York Times published what might be, according to one commentator, “the most significant and consequential op-ed ever published.”[1] The article, purportedly authored by a “senior official” within the Trump administration, contained a number of explosive assertions concerning the fitness of the President and claimed that the author, together with other officials in the administration,…
Commentary

Presidential Powers, Immunities, and Pardons

By Alberto R. Gonzales
PDF Version Introduction Special Counsel Robert Mueller is conducting an investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election and the possible coordination and cooperation with the Donald Trump presidential campaign.1 The investigation has raised numerous legal questions with serious political and legal implications.2 Chief among them is whether a sitting President can be indicted and prosecuted for criminal wrongdoing.3…
Essay

Algorithmic Risk Assessments and the Double-Edged Sword of Youth

By Megan T. Stevenson and Christopher Slobogin
PDF Version Introduction      Risk assessment algorithms—statistical formulas that predict the likelihood a person will commit crime in the future—are used across the country to help make life-altering decisions in the criminal process, including setting bail, determining sentences, selecting probation conditions, and deciding parole.1 Yet many of these instruments are “black-box” tools. The algorithms they use are secret, both…