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United States v. Chischilly

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
30 F.3d 1144 (1994)


Daniel Chischilly (defendant), a Navajo, was convicted of aggravated sexual abuse and murder. The crime occurred on a reservation in Arizona where many Navajos reside. Sperm was found inside the victim and on the victim’s bra, which had been forcefully removed. DNA from the sperm was analyzed by the FBI and indicated a match between the sample and Chischilly’s blood. A government witness testified that the probability of a similar match between a randomly selected American Indian would be one in 2,653. Chischilly objected to the admission of the DNA test results, and the court overruled his objection, but the court did provide careful oversight to frame the statistic as the probability of a random match and not the probability of Chischilly’s innocence. Following his conviction, Chischilly appealed the admission of the DNA-test results.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Choy, J.)

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