Deposition: 'Bite Mark Analysis Not Reliable'

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

A Mississippi dentist who has testified dozens of times about bite marks linking suspects to crime victims now says investigations should rely on DNA instead.

Since the 1980s, Hattiesburg dentist Michael West has testified in dozens of cases in which he said bite marks on victims matched certain suspects. He compared these bite marks to fingerprints, describing their unique characteristics to jurors. Most suspects he testified against went off to prison.

Now The Clarion-Ledger has obtained a 2011 deposition in which West rejects the science he relied on to help put so many behind bars.

West said in the deposition that bite-mark analysis shouldn't be used in court.

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