Challenging Evidence of Urinalysis

by dave on September 15, 2010

in Criminal Justice

The United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces will hear a case where the evidence provided in the defendants urine is being contested under the Confrontation Clause of the 6th Amendment.

According to court-martial.com, the court will review whether a drug testing urine report was admitted and evidence properly and legally, and allowed the defendant sufficient rights to confront the evidence against him under Melendez-Diaz.

The Melendez decision by the Supreme Court stated that forensic and scientific evidence alone is was insufficient to establish facts before the court. The prosecution must provide an expert witness to support and explain the any scientific document, and be subject to cross-examination. The witness must be able to support the validity of the science behind the test, and that all proper procedures were used in any given specific case.

In Melendez, the specific document was that of a drug analysis, stating that a particular substance (cocaine) was in fact an illegal controlled substance.

It will be interesting to see whether this legal principle can also be applied to the defendant’s own urinalysis.

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