NORRISTOWN Experts weighed in Tuesday on who should interpret lab results in criminal investigations after the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office conceded Monday that it bungled a high-profile rape case.
The executive director of the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association said investigators, due to limited resources, often must make arrests based on their own interpretations of lab findings.
But the former head of Virginia's crime labs said investigators should always - before an arrest - confirm lab results with the report's author or an expert.
Montgomery County's rape case against Robert J. Kerns, the former county Republican Party chairman, collapsed after District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman acknowledged her staff misread results from the alleged victim's urine test. Kerns had been accused of drugging and sexually assaulting an employee of his law firm. The prosecution's case rested largely on a faulty initial interpretation by a nurse and a county detective that they thought showed traces of the sleep drug Ambien in the alleged victim's urine.