When the general public thinks about forensic science, they usually imagine television shows. They have this idea of the investigative team walking into the crime scene, quickly gathering very important evidence, putting all the pieces together and figuring out exactly what happened.
But the reality is much different. Everything has been changed for television. Critics note that evidence on TV is often collected much too quickly, it is often too easy to find and the tests and lab results come back with incredible speed. Additionally, much of this evidence is seen as being bulletproof and accurate as soon as it’s found, as if there is no way that it could lead to the wrong conclusions or be countered. But this also usually isn’t the case.
That’s not to say that forensic science isn’t a real profession or that it isn’t an important part of every investigation. It is. But it just doesn’t play out the same way that you see in pop culture.
What does this mean for you?
If you’re facing legal charges and being investigated, it’s important to keep in mind that these general assumptions you may make about the process are not accurate. This can change how you face any potential evidence being presented against you and how you consider your defense options.
You may also want to remember the fact that the police can lie to you. They don’t have to be honest if they’re doing an investigation. They may use the public’s reliance on these television shows to enhance their lies.
For example, you may be arrested but know that you didn’t do anything wrong. But then the officer may tell you that they already found DNA evidence at the scene of the crime.
Never mind that there’s no way they could’ve found it so quickly or processed it in a reliable manner. If you believe that they have found it, this could lead to you saying things that incriminate yourself. But if you understand that there’s no way they could’ve possibly done that, then you know that they’re just trying to manipulate you.
Your defense options
The role of forensic evidence in criminal cases is obviously huge, and that’s why it’s so important to understand how it works and what legal options you have.