Forensic strength of evidence statements should preferably be likelihood ratios calculated using relevant data, quantitative measurements, and statistical models: A response to Lennard (2013) Fingerprint identification: how far have we come?

Geoffrey Stewart Morrison*, Reinoud D. Stoel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Lennard (2013) [Fingerprint identification: how far have we come? Aus J Forensic Sci. doi:10.1080/00450618.2012.752037] proposes that the numeric output of statistical models should not be presented in court (except if necessary/if required). Instead, he argues in favour of an expert opinion which may be informed by a statistical model but which is not itself the output of a statistical model. We argue that his proposed procedure lacks the transparency, the ease of testing of validity and reliability, and the relative robustness to cognitive bias that are the strengths of a likelihood-ratio approach based on relevant data, quantitative measurements, and statistical models, and that the latter is therefore preferable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-292
Number of pages11
JournalAustralian Journal of Forensic Sciences
Volume46
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2014

Keywords

  • Evaluation
  • Evidence
  • Likelihood ratio
  • Opinion
  • Reliability
  • Statistical model

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