A case originating in Waycross, Georgia that relied heavily on bitemark evidence is being challenged in a post-conviction proceeding. Bitemark comparison forensic evidence has been increasingly disfavored as the science that underpins it has been increasingly challenged, like some other forensic sciences that have been shown to be unreliable. Like hair-sample analysis, which was examined at length by the New York Times in 2015, these types of forensic testimony are being reconsidered as ‘junk science’.
11alive.com in Atlanta did a good deep dive on the case of State v. Sheila Denton, who was convicted with the only physical evidence tying her to the scene being bitemark evidence. She was also implicated by her crack dealer, who claims she admitted to the killing, but whose testimony shows indications of being coerced. The reporters, including former Fort Myers-based reporter Andy Pierrotti, do a great job on the story, and have a follow-up story coming on Sunday. The post-conviction hearing was a few weeks ago, and the State has another week or so to respond to the Defendant’s brief. The judge’s ruling will come some time down the road.