Exciting news for those interested in arson convictions. From the Mercury: “The Texas Forensic Science Commission on Friday approved 17 recommendations for improving arson inquiries. The panel also is suggesting a review of murder convictions involving fires, starting with prisoners on death row.”
Of course, reading about forensic arson detection brings to mind the cases of Daniel Dougherty(PA), David McLeod(NH) and of course, Cameron Todd Willingham(TX). If you are interested in this topic, tune in for #cclivechat on Feb 10, 2012. My guest will be Andrew Wade and he will discuss with us his specialist areas in fire investigation and physical (marks) evidence. He is more than happy to answer all your burning questions! His Twitter account is here. Read more here!
The Texas Forensic Science Commission released its final report in the Cameron Todd Willingham fire investigation last Friday. The final report listed 17 recommendations to modernize arson investigations. As directed by the Commission, Blackburn is working with the State Fire Marshall’s Office to now backtrack and review more than 700 arson cases. Read more here.
Cameron Todd Willingham was executed in 2004, 13 years after a fire killed his three daughters. Prosecutors argued that Willingham deliberately set the 1991 blaze but three reviews of the evidence by outside experts found the fire should not have been ruled arson. Willingham was executed for accidental fire. In 2014, the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles denied a petition to vacate his conviction. The Board’s indifference in this case is a disgrace.