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How accurate is bitemark analysis?

Answered by The Discovery Channel

Bite marks are not as distinctive as fingerprints or DNA. Forensic dentists can tell a lot about someone from his or her teeth or from bitemarks, but the analysis can be flawed or misleading. There are countless examples of people who were convicted on the basis of bitemark analysis and later exonerated by subsequent DNA evidence. Critics of bitemark analysis point out that forensic dentists receive a lot of information about a suspect before they perform an analysis of a bitemark. This could inadvertently lead dentists to force evidence to fit investigators’ needs. Critics also point out that forensic dentists can give juries the impression that bitemarks are completely unique or can identify a person with 100 percent certainty, and that is not the case.

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