Sunday, May 13, 2012

In Memoriam: Louis H. Pollak

Dennis Hevesi,  Louis H. Pollak, Civil Rights Advocate and Federal Judge, Dies at 89 NYTimes (May 12, 2012):

"In January 2002 in a murder case [Lhera Plaza], he ruled that fingerprint experts could point out the similarities between prints from the crime scene to those of a defendant, but could not “present ‘evaluation’ testimony as to their ‘opinion’ that a particular latent print is in fact the print of a particular person.”

"His initial decision delighted defense lawyers and alarmed law enforcement officials. Two months later, after three days of testimony at a special hearing, Judge Pollak reversed himself. Still, he expressed deep concern that “there have been at least a few instances in which fingerprint examiners, here and abroad, have made identifications that turned out to be erroneous.'"


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