This note focuses on the current controversy over admissibility standards for novel scientific testimony. It will trace the development of legal standards for expert witness admissibility from the common law through the adoption of the Federal Rules of Evidence and to the current trend of strict judicial scrutiny. In addition, this note will analyze the issues before the United States Supreme Court in Daubert and will argue, in spite of indications to the contrary, that the Court should not be too quick to continue tightening the judicial noose on scientific experts. Finally, this note will dispute the utility of amending Federal Rule of Evidence 702 and will argue that the potential harm of that proposition will have devastating effects on the jury trial which substantially outweigh its laudable aims. Through this analysis it will become apparent that the current trend of strict judicial scrutiny of scientific evidence not only betrays the notion of civil justice, but has grown through knee-jerk assumptions ascribing scientific evidence as responsible for the "disappearance of valuable and perhaps even life-saving products and services."
Scott Charles Walker,
Chicken Little's Revenge: Strict Judicial Scrutiny of Scientific Evidence,
41 Clev. St. L. Rev.
available at http://engagedscholarship.csuohio.edu/clevstlrev/vol41/iss4/5