September 5, 2012 -- Professor Jennifer Mnookin commented on the impact of competing expert testimony in a Chicago Tribune article on Drew Peterson's defense.
Competing experts have been a long-debated courtroom reality, especially in cases like this one where the evidence is circumstantial, said Jennifer Mnookin, professor of law at UCLA.
In a 1901 Harvard Law Review article, prominent judge and scholar Learned Hand described the trouble with expert testimony, worrying about "setting the jury to decide where doctors disagree." Despite a century of complaints, the practice has persisted, in part, because science doesn't always produce certainty, Mnookin said.
"Competing experts are an old problem, a serious problem and a problem that we have never really found a good solution for," Mnookin said.
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