Boston Criminal Defense Lawyer Discusses the Impact of a Breach of Protocol at a Massachusetts Crime Lab
Is your loved one serving time in jail for a drug conviction? If so, you may want to contact a Boston criminal defense lawyer to determine if the evidence that led to the conviction was properly handled and uncompromised.
Crime Lab Protocol
Laboratory tests are crucial evidence in many criminal cases. Technicians, chemists, and toxicologists work at crime labs to conduct tests, such as blood tests, DNA tests, drug screening tests, and urine tests. Lab employees are required to follow strict protocols in order to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the test results. If these protocols are not adhered to, a criminal conviction based on those lab results may be suspect and subject to reversal.
Fallout from Failure to Follow Protocol
Recent news that a chemist at a Massachusetts crime lab failed to follow proper protocols, or even deliberately tampered with confiscated drugs, throughout her nine-year career at the lab has rocked the state’s criminal justice community. This individual was involved in testing approximately 50,000 drug samples during her career, potentially leading to hundreds of wrongful convictions and improper sentences.
Investigators first learned of the potential problem in February 2012, while looking into a June 2011 incident in which drug samples were wrongly catalogued. When it was reported that the problem was much more severe, the governor ordered the lab closed. Boston criminal defense lawyers and defense lawyers throughout the state have expressed concern that such a considerable breach of protocol was not caught sooner, and that potentially thousands of convictions could be at risk. Meanwhile, the investigation into the lab’s practices and this chemist’s conduct, in particular, continues.
Contact Boston Criminal Defense Lawyer, Kevin J. Mahoney
This breach of protocol plainly demonstrates why criminal defense lawyers must be prepared to challenge the state’s toxicology evidence. If you would like to speak with a Massachusetts criminal defense lawyer who understands forensic evidence and protocols, and who will confidently take on the state’s chemist or other toxicology expert, contact Kevin J. Mahoney, at 617-492-0055, to schedule a free consultation.
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