Wrongful convictions, prosecutorial misconduct, false testimony, are words that could be eliminated from criminal justice lingo by utilizing Brain Wave Science Technology, called Brain Fingerprinting. This evidence seeking device can save billions of dollars in trials, wrongful conviction lawsuits, discourage corruption and prevent the ruination (irrecoverable state of devastation and destruction) of lives.
Dr. Larry Farwell, neuroscientist, developed an innovative technological forensic tool, Brain Fingerprinting, that processes brain waves to determine an individual's knowledge or unawareness of crime events and also verify an alibi.
“Brain Fingerprinting fulfills a need for government, law enforcement agencies, corporations and individuals. Over a trillion dollars are spent annually in crime fighting, worldwide. It saves money from not incarcerating innocent people who could've been positively contributing to society, ” said Dr. Farwell, via phone interview.
HOW IT WORKS
A sensor equipped headband attached to a suspect to identify brain wave responses measures electrical waves occurring at 300-500 milliseconds, Dr. Farwell named and patented P300 and the P300 MERMER at up to 1,200. It shows what a person knows or doesn't know after stimulus is initiated, such as words or images that are flashed on a computer monitor. Three types of stimuli used include, targets or inevitably recognized objects known to be known by suspect such as news reports or interrogations, irrevelants or something incorrect and probes which are evidence from a crime scene, like a weapon or location where a body was found.
“We present details that the suspect being tested would have encountered in the course of committing a crime but the innocent would have no way of knowing. Brain Fingerprinting testing detects information, the planning and executing of the crime,
stored in the brain. It could eliminate bias, whether racial, economic or cultural,” said Dr. Farwell.
ADMISSIBLE IN COURT
In Iowa, Terry Harrington, black,17, was convicted by an all white jury, of murdering a retired white police officer, in 1977, solely on statements provided by friend, Kevin Hughes, 16, motivated to avoid prosecution of the murder. Harrington served 23 years of a life sentence before being granted a new trial based on prosecutors, David Richter and Joseph Hrvol, suppression of vital evidence. Along with Dr. Farwell's Brain Fingerprinting tests, on Harrington, with results that he had no knowledge of the crime scene, (information absent) and had knowledge of an alibi, (information present) the court decided not to retry.
“I confronted Hughes with the Brain test results and told Hughes, that is not what the brain says and he recanted his original testimony. We discovered the police coached him and gave information about the crime to use in the trial proceedings,” said Dr. Farwell. “Hughes said, 'I was Black, I was in jail and the prosecutors told me they were gonna send me to prison for the murder if I didn't say somebody did it.”
Harrington's post- conviction statement reads, “I know I'm innocent...I'm going to keep fighting because I can't see myself locked up for the rest of my life for something I didn't do...I feel I was judged by the color of my skin and not the content of my character.”
Harrington, who coached a Boy's and Girl's Club little league football team, was awarded a seven million dollar settlement in 2010. His co-defendant, Curtis McGhee, pleaded to a reduced charge, received time served and approximately five million dollars. Hughes died in 2009. Last year, Harrington's $112 million civil suit against prosecutors, who claimed immunity, resulted in a mistrial.
Iowa District Court Judge Tim O Grady ruled, in 2001, that Brain Fingerprinting testing met the legal standards for admissibility in court on scientific evidence. Those standards include: 1) has the science been tested, 2) been peer reviewed and published, 3) is the science accurate and found applicative and 4) is the science well accepted in the science community.
Dr. Farwell and his colleague, Dr. Drew Richardson, UNC-Chapel Hill alumnus and former FBI scientist, conducted Brain Fingerprinting studies performed on FBI agents, a CIA Real Life study, Bomb Makers Study and the Real Crimes Real Consequences $100,000 Reward study, with an error rate of one percent. The Reward study dared anyone to beat the test and the cash is still available, no one has won, even with cheat sheets. The doctors are published in several peer reviewed scientific journals including, Journal of Forensic Science (2001), and Cognitive Neurodynamics (2013).
“It seems to me that if we are interested in making sure the innocent go free and that the guilty are punished, any technological instrument that can help us make a determination of guilt or innocence, we ought to know about it,” Iowa Senator Grassley, statement for Change.org.
Dr. Farwell said Brain Fingerprinting does not decide guilt or innocent but added with DNA, finger printing, other valid evidence and common sense, provides judges and juries with more knowledge to base their decisions. He said DNA and fingerprinting is available in only approximately one percent of cases whereas the brain stores information indefinitely and cannot be manipulated or suppressed as with the polygraph test that feed off of emotions and physical movements. Truth serums, like sodium pentathol, help individuals talk freely but not necessarily telling the truth and is not scientific evidence.
James B. Grinder, for 15 years, alluded prosecution in Julie Helton's rape, beating and fatal stabbing, in Macon, Montana, 1984. Sheriff Robert Dawson, in 1999, enlisted Dr. Farwell to conduct Brain fingerprinting tests on Grinder which helped prove, with an error rate of one percent, that Grinder was guilty. Crime details, flashed in short phrases on a computer monitor, like the weapon used, specific killing method and the place where body was found, Grinder had the 'information present' grade. He confessed to not only Helton's murder but three other young women and accepted a plea or life in prison, where he remains.
Cooper vs Cooper in North Carolina
Brad Cooper, 39, of Cary, NC, convicted in the strangulation death of his wife Nancy, in 2011, recently, won an appeal for a new trial that Attorney General Roy Cooper (no known relation) plans to fight. The appeal, granted on grounds that digital forensic scientists were banned from testifying concerning a Google map search, the deciding factor in the conviction that defense attorneys claim to have been manipulated.
Could Brain Fingerprinting resolve this dispute? The Brain test utilizes crime evidence, known to the perpetrator and investigators, not exposed via news reports, during trial or through conversations with lawyers or prosecutors, which could make it difficult for testers to discover unknown evidence, but not impossible. Dr. Farwell said he has a backlog of over 400 cases, and has limited staff because,” I haven't trained enough people,” said Farwell. He said the affordable testing, $350 an hour, is similar to attorney fees.
Jimmy Ray Slaughter, executed, March, 2005. for the deaths of his eleven-month old daughter and her mother, in 1991, claimed his innocence until his last breath. In spite of Brain Fingerprinting test results in regards to critical knowledge to the murder, 'information absent', that supported his claim, Oklahoma denied Slaughter's clemency. Farwell wasn't allowed to conduct further test to Slaughter's alibi.
Court documents in Slaughter v State opinioned, “What we have are some interesting, indeed startling claims that are not backed up with enough info for us to act on them. Petitioner...and has alleged negative response to such information during Brain Fingerprinting testing is, at the very least, curious.”
“I've been accused of murder and it's just not true. It was a lie from the beginning. You people would know it's true some day. May God have mercy on your soul,” Slaughter's last words.
Cooper's, Harrington's and Slaughter's cases' similarities include the exclusion of other suspects revealed or investigated, that all three men claimed in appeals.
Brain Fingerprinting will bring new meaning to the phrase, 'beyond a reasonable doubt.' Dr. Farwell's innovative technology holds the key to truth and trust in the criminal justice system but scientists and lawmakers agree more research is needed. President Obama allocated $100 million, this year, for brain research as a better way to treat conditions like Alzheimer's, Autism and traumatic brain injuries, that could 'improve the lives of billions of people worldwide.' The wrongly convicted and accused hope this initiative includes their plights.
“ I envision that over the next 10 to 20 years many police officers and investigators will be trained as part of their regular law enforcement education to record elements of a crime scene for use in Brain fingerprinting just as they are careful to preserve DNA samples and fingerprinting. I wished more than anything to moving my efforts to create a safer, fair and more accurate justice system,” Richardson's statement, on joining the Brain Fingerprinting staff.
“In the not too distant future, anyone who's falsely accused will be given a Brain fingerprinting test, very early in the investigation. Authorities can then focus their resources on the real criminal. We as scientists have a responsibility to serve the public. For those of us who practice Brain Fingerprinting in the field, people's lives and freedom depend on the science,” said Dr. Farwell.
Dr. Farwell, Harvard graduate, holds four patents and works internationally. Time Magazine selected him one of its 100 Top Innovators: Picassos or Einsteins of the 21st Century. His Brain Fingerprinting technology has been used to study the early onset of Alzheimer's and the impact of advertising in television and newspapers in the U.K.
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