Acting on a tip from a whistle-blower, KHOU 11 had obtained dozens of DNA profiles processed by the lab and sent them to independent experts for analysis. “My son is named Josiah Sutton,” she began, “and he has been falsely accused of a crime.” Four years earlier, Batie explained, Josiah, then 16, and his neighbor Gregory Adams, 19, had been arrested for the rape of a 41-year-old Houston woman, who told police that two young men had abducted her from the parking lot of her apartment complex and taken turns assaulting her as they drove around the city in her Ford Expedition.
The results, William Thompson, an attorney and a criminology professor at the University of California at Irvine, told a KHOU 11 reporter, were terrifying: It appeared that Houston police technicians were routinely misinterpreting even the most basic samples. A few days after reporting the crime, the woman spotted Sutton and Adams walking down a street in southwest Houston.
Batie hand-delivered the files from her son’s case to Raziq, who forwarded them on to William Thompson, the UC Irvine professor.
Thompson had been studying forensic science for decades.
The thesis must be the last sentence of the first paragraph.
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The blood had been sent to the Houston crime lab, where an analyst named Christy Kim extracted and amplified DNA from the samples until the distinct genetic markers that swim in every human cell were visible, on test strips, as a staggered line of blue dots.
Josiah Sutton with his mother in 2003, a week after his release from prison.