Forensic Evaluation Ltd
Dr Geoffrey Stewart Morrison, Director and Forensic Consultant

http://forensic-evaluation.net/

last update
2017-09-24






  • I provide consulting on:

    • forensic speech science

    • forensic inference and statistics


  • I provide case specific forensic analysis, advice, and/or critique of other’s reports

    • as a testifying witness or a non-testifying advisor

    • at admissibility hearings, at trial, and at appeal


  • I provide training for lawyers and forensic scientists



  • I work in a paradigm which includes:

    • Evaluation of strength of evidence using the likelihood ratio framework.

      • Recognised by leading forensic statisticians as the logically correct framework for evaluation of strength of evidence.
Endorsed by European Network of Forensic Science Institutes (2015) Guideline for evaluative reporting in forensic science

    • Calculation of strength of evidence, on the basis of relevant data, quantitative measurements, and statistical models.

      • Such approaches are transparent, replicable, and resistant to cognitive bias.


    • Empirical testing of the validity and reliability of the system used to assess the strength of evidence in the case.

      • Testing performed under conditions reflecting those of the case.

      • Such testing is the only way to determine how well a method and its implementation work.
President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) September 2016 Report on Forensic science in criminal courts: Ensuring scientific validity of feature-comparison methods, page 6:

“neither experience, nor judgment, nor good professional practices (such as certification programs and accreditation programs, standardized protocols, proficiency testing, and codes of ethics) can substitute for actual evidence of foundational validity and reliability. The frequency with which a particular pattern or set of features will be observed in different samples, which is an essential element in drawing conclusions, is not a matter of ‘judgment.’ It is an empirical matter for which only empirical evidence is relevant. Similarly, an expert’s expression of confidence based on personal professional experience or expressions of consensus among practitioners about the accuracy of their field is no substitute for error rates estimated from relevant studies. For forensic feature-comparison methods, establishing foundational validity based on empirical evidence is thus a sine qua non. Nothing can substitute for it.”




Casework
  • I conduct forensic analyses in forensic speech science:

    • forensic voice comparison
      • where the court wants to determine whether the voice of a speaker on an audio recording was produced by a particular known speaker or by some other speaker

    • disputed-utterance analysis
      • where the court wants to determine what a speaker said at some point on an audio recording

    • My experience includes submitting casework reports in criminal and civil cases.


  • I also provide critiques of reports submitted by others.

    • My experience includes:
      • submitting written critiques and testifying in court
      • advising the defence in relation to a Daubert hearing on the admissibility of forensic voice comparison testimony tendered by the prosecution in a US Federal Court case

    • Example of a critique written for a journalistic case

    • Lawyers who are concerned about the scientific validity of a forensic speech science report submitted by another expert should definitely contact me.


  • I provide testimony related to a listener’s abilities to recognise a speaker by the sound of their voice.

    • Sometimes instead of commissioning a forensic voice comparison report, a party in a court case attempts to rely on a non expert, such as a police officer, saying that they recognised a speaker’s voice.

    • Research has identified a number of factors that may make listeners better or worse at identifying speakers.

    • One research finding is that people think that they and others are better at identifying speaker than they really are.

    • My experience includes providing written reports and testifying in court.


  • I also provide informational reports designed to educate the court about speaker recognition in general.


Software

Forensic Evaluation Ltd is a value added reseller for Oxford Wave Research Ltd products, including:

Packages provided by Forensic Evaluation Ltd include software licences plus enhanced training and support from Dr Morrison.

Why do I recommend VOCALISE?

VOCALISE stands out from its competitors in that it gives the forensic practitioner maximum flexibility to retrain its statistical models. This allows the practitioner to take account of the case-specific relvant population and recording conditions, and therefore to appropriately assess the strength of forensic evidence for the given case.





Training

I provide training for forensic scientists, lawyers, judges, and others.

Training can be specific to forensic speech science, or can cover evaluation of forensic evidence in general.

Training will be tailored depending on the needs of the client.

Training can be provided in English or Spanish. / Los talleres se puede impartir en inglés o español.

Below are outlines of introductory workshops.

  • Introduction to logical reasoning for the evaluation of forensic evidence

    • Slides:

    • Audience: forensic scientists and/or lawyers


      This half-day workshop provides an introduction to the likelihood-ratio framework for the evaluation and interpretation of forensic evidence.

      There is a great deal of misunderstanding and confusion about the likelihood-ratio framework among lawyers, judges, and forensic scientists.

      The likelihood-ratio framework makes explicit the questions which must logically be addressed by the forensic scientist and considered by lawyers, judges, and trier’s of fact in assessing the work of the forensic scientist.

      This workshop explains the logic of the likelihood-ratio framework in a way which is accessible to a broad audience and which does not require any prior knowledge about the framework. It uses intuitive examples and audience-participation exercises to gradually build a fuller understanding of the likelihood-ratio framework.

      The workshop also includes discussion of common logical fallacies.

      Other workshops Dr Morrison presents generally assume familiarity with the material presented in this workshop.


  • Calculating the strength of forensic evidence, and testing the validity and reliability of forensic-evaluation systems

    • Audience: forensic scientists or lawyers (different depth of coverage and focus depending on the audience)


      This half-day workshop provides an introduction to topics such as the calculation of forensic likelihood ratios on the basis of relevant data, quantitative measurements, and statistical models, and an introduction to empirically assessing the validity and reliability of forensic-evaluation systems.

      Some of the topics listed below can also be presented as stand alone tutorials.

      Audience members are assumed to already have a basic understanding of the logic of the likelihood-ratio framework, e.g., by having participated in my workshop “Introduction to logical reasoning for the evaluation of forensic evidence”.

      Topics covered may include:

      • basic statistical models for calculating likelihood ratios

      • calibrating forensic-evaluation systems

      • empirically testing the validity and reliability of forensic-evaluation systems

        Slides:



About Dr Morrison
Morrison is one of the leading thinkers in the world about problems of forensic inference.

Few have his ability to understand and explain forensic statistics.

Prof William C Thompson
School of Law, and Department of Criminology, Law & Society, University of California Irvine
Co-counsel for OJ Simpson in his criminal trial in Los Angeles, 1994–1995
Originator of the terms “prosecutor’s fallacy” and “defense attorney’s fallacy”

Morrison has a very nice writing style and I think he has phrased some of the fundamental matters in a way that is more clearly put than I have ever seen. I think he has done a masterly job.

Dr John S Buckleton
Principle Scientist, ESR Forensics, Auckland, New Zealand
Commenting on Morrison (2010) Forensic voice comparison, Expert Evidence Series.


In addition to my consulting work, I am:

  • Reader in Forensic Speech Science, Centre for Forensic Linguistics, Aston University


My previous appointments include:

  • Simons Foundation Visiting Fellow, Probability and Statistics in Forensic Science Programme, Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences

  • Scientific Counsel, Office of Legal Affairs, INTERPOL

  • Adjunct Professor, Department of Linguistics, University of Alberta

  • Director, Forensic Voice Comparison Laboratory, School of Electrical Engineering & Telecommunications, University of New South Wales


I have also been:

I have authored numerous peer-reviewed journal articles, law review articles, book chapters, and conference proceedings papers.

I have provided training and/or research and development services to law enforcement agencies and forensic laboratories in North and South America, Europe, Australasia, and Asia.

I have worked on forensic cases in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia.

For more about my work see:



Recommended reading

The following publications should be accessible to a broad audience including lawyers.


  • Morrison G.S. & Thompson W.C. (2017). Assessing the admissibility of a new generation of forensic voice comparison testimony. Columbia Science and Technology Law Review, 18, 326–434.

  • Morrison G.S. (2017 in press). Admissibility of forensic voice comparison testimony in England & Wales. Criminal Law Review.




  • Morrison G.S., Enzinger E., Zhang C. (2017). Forensic speech science. Chapter 99 in Freckelton I., & Selby H. (Eds.), Expert Evidence. Sydney, Australia: Thomson Reuters.


  • Morrison G.S. (2014). Distinguishing between forensic science and forensic pseudoscience: Testing of validity and reliability, and approaches to forensic voice comparison. Science & Justice, 54, 245–256.





Links


Contact
  • An initial consultation up to half an hour is free.


  • Send me an e-mail with your contact information and I will call you via skype or telephone as soon as I can.

    • e-mail address:

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  • Effective mid 2017:

    • Longer term reseach & development and training are provided through Aston University.

    • Casework and shorter term consulting are provided through Forensic Evaluation Ltd.

    • Sales and suport for Oxford Wave Research products are provided through Forensic Evaluation Ltd.