# US10489233

### Method, apparatus and computer software program for determining probability of error in identifying evidence

An apparatus for determining probability of error in identifying evidence includes a computer. The apparatus includes a non-transitory memory in communication with the computer in which is stored a software program, and prior and posterior probability distributions from a plurality of independent tests conducted on an item of evidence. For each test, the computer forms a factor distribution from the test’s probability distributions using the software program stored in the non-transitory memory of the computer. The computer convolves the independent factor distributions to form a joint factor distribution using the software program. The computer calculates a tail probability from the joint factor distribution using the software program to determine a probability of error in identifying the evidence. The computer stores the probability of error in the non-transitory memory. A method. A computer program.

Download Patent**Claims**: The invention claimed is:

- A method for determining probability of error in identifying evidence in a criminal investigation comprised of the steps:
- obtaining prior and posterior probability distributions from a plurality of independent tests conducted on an item of evidence;
- entering the probability distributions into a non-transitory memory of a computer;
- for each test, forming a factor distribution from the test’s probability distributions with the computer using a software program stored in the non-transitory memory of the computer;
- convolving the independent factor distributions to form a joint factor distribution by the computer using the software program;
- calculating a tail probability from the joint factor distribution by the computer using the software program to determine a probability of error in identifying the evidence;
- storing the probability of error in the non-transitory memory of the computer; and
- reporting the probability of error from the computer to help implicate guilty defendants and exonerate innocent defendants in a court of law to a party interested in identifying the evidence.

- A computer program stored in a non-transitory memory for determining probability of error in identifying evidence in a criminal investigation comprising the steps of:
- obtaining prior and posterior probability distributions from a plurality of independent tests conducted on an item of evidence;
- entering the probability distributions into a non-transitory memory of a computer; and the computer implemented steps using the computer program of:
- for each test, forming a factor distribution from the test’s probability distributions with the computer;
- convolving the independent factor distributions to form a joint factor distribution by the computer;
- calculating a tail probability from the joint factor distribution by the computer to determine a probability of error in identifying the evidence;
- storing the probability of error in the non-transitory memory of the computer; and
- reporting the probability of error from the computer to help implicate guilty defendants and exonerate innocent defendants in a court of law to a party interested in identifying the evidence.

- An apparatus for determining probability of error in identifying evidence in a criminal investigation comprising:
- a computer;
- a non-transitory memory in communication with the computer in which is stored a software program, and prior and posterior probability distributions from a plurality of independent tests conducted on an item of evidence; for each test, the computer forms a factor distribution from the test’s probability distributions using the software program stored in the non-transitory memory of the computer; the computer convolves the independent factor distributions to form a joint factor distribution using the software program; the computer calculates a tail probability from the joint factor distribution using the software program to determine a probability of error to help implicate guilty defendants and exonerate innocent defendants in a court of law in identifying the evidence; the computer stores the probability of error in the non-transitory memory; and
- a printer or display in communication with the computer which prints out a report that reports the probability of error to a party interested in identifying the evidence, or a display in communication with the computer on which the computer displays the report.

- A method for determining probability of error in identifying evidence in a criminal investigation comprised of the steps:
- obtaining prior and posterior probability distributions conducted on an item of evidence;
- entering the probability distributions into a non-transitory memory of a computer;
- examining the probabilities of a plurality of possible outcomes in no more than one minute of computer time to help implicate guilty defendants and exonerate innocent defendants in a court of law; and
- forming a factor distribution from the probability distributions on the examined outcomes with the computer using a software program stored in the non- transitory memory of the computer.

- A method as described in claim 4 where after the forming step there are the additional steps of:
- calculating a rail probability from the factor distribution by the computer using the software program to determine a probability of error in identifying the evidence;
- storing the probability of error in the non-transitory memory of the computer; and
- reporting the probability of error from the computer to a party interested in identifying the evidence.

- A method as described in claim 1 where the factor is related to a likelihood ratio.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the factor is used for forensic identification.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the item is biological evidence.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the tests involve DNA analysis.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the item is fingerprint evidence.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the item is firearm evidence.
- A method as described in claim 4 where the factor distribution provides exclusionary information about the evidence.
- A method as described in claim 4 where the factor distribution provides inclusionary information about the evidence.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the probability of error helps identify an investigative lead.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the probability of error assists a trier of fact in understanding the evidence.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the test conducts a biometric measurement.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the test is for a genetic disease.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the test is for determining parentage.
- A method as described in claim 1 where the factor assists a physician in assessing an outcome of a diagnostic test.