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Scientific Proof in Criminal Cases - A Texas Lawyer's Guide

NCJ Number
R E Moses
Date Published
395 pages
This manual for Texas prosecutors and defense attorneys deals with aspects of scientific proof which are most commonly encountered in criminal trials.
The manual focuses on the expert witness and provides information on the evidentiary predicate necessary to support expert testimony on any given subject and on the attorney's role in preparing an expert witness for trial. It also examines the present concept of pretrial criminal discovery and articulates the scope of its use in light of Constitutional and statutory authority. The legal theory of insanity which is predicated on responsibility for acts committed by free will is contrasted with the psychiatric theory of determininism and mental illness. Also, the Texas law of insanity and related procedural aspects are considered. The manual also provides a basic understanding of the role of the firearms analyst in marshalling and presenting evidence concerning the identification of firearms and ammunition. A glossary of firearms terminology is included. Additional sections focus on the roles of forensic pathology, and on those of chemistry and toxicology (a glossary is included.). Other sections include fingerprints and a glossary, microanalysis, questioned documents, photographs, the polygraph, nuclear activation analysis, and voiceprints and tape recordings. Each part contains information on locating and engaging an expert, on direct and cross-examination questions, and on additional reference sources.