NACDL - Mixing It Up: Legal Challenges to Probabilistic Genotyping Programs for DNA Mixture Analysis

Mixing It Up: Legal Challenges to Probabilistic Genotyping Programs for DNA Mixture Analysis

Probabilistic genotyping software is used when DNA evidence is a mixture of contributions from several people, when only trace amounts are collected, or when the evidence has been degraded by elements such as sunlight, moisture, and bacteria. Scientists developed probabilistic genotyping software programs to analyze these complex mixtures. Are these software programs accurate? How can lawyers challenge the admissibility of the programs under Frye and Daubert standards? When should defense counsel bring an “as-applied” challenge?