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Articles by Casey Bastian

The Debunking of Forensic Science: A Decade of Increased Scrutiny Reveals Forensic Processes Prone to Bias and Error

by Casey J. Bastian

When a crime is committed, it is vital that the actual perpetrator be identified and held accountable. However, that process is not always straightforward. Every criminal investigation begins with the analysis of a crime scene and the collection of forensic evidence. But crime is inherently complex. ...

Traditional Forensic Ballistics Comparisons Giving Way to Virtual 3D Methods

by Casey J. Bastian

Forensic experts have been conducting ballistics comparisons and presenting their testimony in courts for more than 100 years. Experts frequently imply that accurately identifying that a specific gun fired a particular bullet is straightforward: Simply search for distinctive marks on a bullet made by the barrel ...

The National Registry of Exonerations 2021 Annual Report: 161 Exonerations Comprising 1,849 Years of Wrongful Imprisonment

by Casey J. Bastian

The National Registry of Exonerations (“NRE”) recorded a total of 226 exonerations in 2021. Of these, 161 were discovered in 2021. The remaining 65 were discovered in previous years, only being recorded by the NRE in 2021. Each of the 161 persons exonerated spent an average ...

Review of Prior Research Identifies Three Main Sources of Bias in Jury Decision-Making Processes

by Casey J. Bastian

In our adversarial court systems, a person impaneled on a jury is tasked with a seemingly straight-forward duty: determine the reliability and credibility of trial evidence, deliberate, and render a decision. However, studies reveal that this process is not so simple. Jurors are often irrational — ...

Police Foundations: The Impossible Task of Separating the World of Policing From the World of Corporate Money

by Casey J. Bastian

“Not a lot of people are aware of this public-private partnership where corporations and wealthy donors are able to siphon money into police forces with little to no oversight.” — Gin Armstrong, senior research analyst at LittleSis.

 

Police foundations are private organizations that engage in ...

Charlotte Is Ground Zero for New FBI Asset Forfeiture Tip Line Program

by Casey J. Bastian

The FBI has identified Charlotte, North Carolina, as a drug trafficking hub because it has “multiple interstates running directly through” it. The FBI claims that this makes the Queen City an “appealing” route to traffickers delivering product and transferring cash “up and down the East Coast.” ...

Miami Police Officer Who Broke ‘Blue Code of Silence’ Being Investigated

by Casey J. Bastian

Miami Police Department (“MPD”) Chief of Police Manny Morales believes in officer accountability. His statement makes that clear: “If in fact it is determined that it is our officer, he will be held accountable for his actions.” In the statement, Morales described the officer as having ...

U.S. Senator to Federal Agency: Investigate Abusive Use of Administrative Subpoena Power to Gather Bulk Financial Records

by Casey J. Bastian

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) operates U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”). In turn, ICE oversees the subagency Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”). Since 2019, HSI has used its administrative subpoena powers to request bulk financial records from Western Union and Maxitransfers Corporation (“Maxi”). The ...

Aversion to Error: Americans View Wrongful Acquittals and Wrongful Convictions to Be Errors of Equal Magnitude

by Casey J. Bastian

As we evolve our systems of criminaljustice, it becomes apparent that we must first agree what constitutes “justice.” And when we focus on what is justice within the criminal procedures for adjudicating guilt, an old maxim is frequently cited by many people — it is “better ...

The Sixth Amendment Right to Assistance of Legal Counsel: An Examination of Federal Justice System Outcomes

by Casey J. Bastian

Among an individual’s rights enshrined in the U.S Constitution is their Sixth Amendment right to assistance of legal counsel. The principle ensures an accused person in America is able to defend against a criminal prosecution. This right has been expanded by the Supreme Court of the ...

 

 

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