Article Title

A Tale of Two Dauberts

Publication Date



Under the Federal Rules of Evidence and Supreme
Court precedent, a single standard ostensibly governs the
admissibility of scientific and other expert evidence in
criminal and civil cases. Although Georgia has recently
become the forty-fourth state to adopt the Federal Rules of
Evidence, it has declined to adopt Daubert for criminal
cases and has retained the prior, more lenient, standard.
While many commentators view this approach as perverse,
this Article considers the possible virtues not only of
explicitly applying a separate rule to scientific evidence in
criminal cases but also of applying a less stringent rule to
such evidence. Based on the experience of the federal
courts, even a seemingly unitary standard will, in
practice, be disparately applied. Because courts are
unlikely to exclude forensic evidence of longstanding

admissibility even where its reliability has been called into
question, an explicitly non-Daubert approach would at
least allow courts to be more honest about the reliability of
such evidence while still admitting it. This Article
proposes that other states follow Georgia's lead and
consider the virtues of rejecting a (falsely) uniform
standard for evaluating the reliability of scientific
evidence in criminal and civil cases.