Ark. Supreme Court says cases need review after flawed forensics

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas' high court has sent two cases back to lower courts to consider whether flawed testimony from FBI forensics experts is enough to overturn the convictions of two men.

The court issued its opinions in the companion cases Thursday.

Lonnie Strawhacker was convicted of rape in 1990 based partly on testimony from an FBI hair-comparison expert during his trial.  Eugene Pitts was convicted of capital murder in the kidnapping and slaying of a North Little Rock veterinarian also based partly on testimony from the same FBI expert.

Last year, the Justice Department announced that experts had overstated the strength of their evidence dating back decades in many cases involving microscopic hair analysis. The two Arkansas cases join dozens of convictions nationwide identified by the Justice Department as involving the testimony.


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