Eclipse Public Relations Client: The DNA Project | Press Release: Forensic DNA Evidence vs The Fallibility of Public Opinion
Posted: Monday, September 29th, 2014 @ 8:22 am
Categories: Client releases & coverage, Hot off the press.
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“When you don’t disturb a crime scene, forensic evidence has the power to determine exactly what happened and who committed the crime. Disturb the crime scene, and you may have to rely on the opinions expressed on social media” – Vanessa Lynch, Project Founder of DNA Project.
Never before has a generation’s influence to condemn, vilify, sympathise or sanctify been more evident than during the tragic legal tour de force and social media hurricane surrounding the Oscar Pistorius trial. It’s become clear that public and mass media opinion can be both measured and influenced by the uncensored flow of social media commentary.
Despite the “he said, she said” nature of events that have unfolded during the historic #OscarTrial testimony, one glaring factor that needs to be addressed across all sectors of society is this: had the crime scene for this particular case been treated with the necessary forensic expertise and reverence, and DNA and other forensic evidence was correctly collected minus any interference or possible contamination, the evidence would speak for itself.
This, an eerie parallel to the OJ Simpson trial: another high profile case that played out in the media (long before the days of social media). While fraught with public opinion, forensic evidence in the case was found unreliable due to mis-handling in the crime lab.
To bring awareness to the critical role that ordinary people wield during the course of justice, DNA Projects’ current social media campaign, in conjunction with project sponsors Change A Life, attempts to educate the public about the undeniable truth that DNA Evidence has the power to Convict.
In a country where crime is common-place, there is a dangerous tendency towards apathy. However, when ordinary people are armed with the knowledge that not disturbing a crime scene and assisting to secure possible DNA material can make the difference between a crime going unsolved and a murderer being convicted, there is a powerful sense of hope that those affected by violence will be afforded justice through convictions.
Functional awareness is a key component to educate the public around what it means to secure a crime scene. Says DNA Project Founder, Vanessa Lynch, the Oscar Pistorious trial has highlighted the importance of securing a crime scene and preserving the evidence contained therein. If carried out correctly, accurate DNA collection could have resulted in a very different course of events during the #OscarTrial. But more importantly, it could result in a different outcome for every single case where forensic evidence plays a crucial role in determining what happened at the crime scene. What better place to spread the message about the dangers of speculation in the absence of evidence, than on Twitter, the modern-day switchboard that is housing so much public opinion on the case.”
“It’s reassuring to see, by the thousands of social media comments surrounding the trial and the success of the DNA Project’s social media awareness campaign, the public are well aware that there are fundamental failings when it comes to how crime scenes are destroyed by all those who walk through them – from neighbours, to security guards to the CSI’s. We want to use this stirring of awareness to further embed the message that human fallibility is unavoidable in both law and opinion, but DNA does not lie. DNA evidence convicts. It is an objective account of the truth. Here’s hoping that our message on social media made people think about that undeniable truth” concludes Lynch.
To Follow the DNA Project on Twitter click here https://twitter.com/DNADetective