North Eastern Technical

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230 Penn Forest Rd N
Kunkletown, PA 18058

Daubert Alert!

Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 509 U.S. 579 (1993), sets forth the trial judge's gatekeeping function with regard to expert witnesses, which focuses on Rule 702 of the Federal Rules of Evidence. Rule 702 provides:

    If scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise, if (1) the testimony is based upon sufficient facts or data, (2) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and (3) the witness has applied the principles and methods reliably to the facts of each case.

CASE #1 May 23, 2000

Key Pathway examinations have been judicially endorsed as admissible.

In Tennessee Circuit Court in Memphis, Tennessee on May 23, 2000, after a lengthy Daubert hearing, the Judge held Richard Pacheco had the "knowledge, skill, experience, training, and education" to testify and that the key pathway analysis would "substantially assist" the jury in considering whether the car in question was actually stolen.

The Tennessee rule on the admissibility of expert testimony as actually more stringent than the federal rule under Daubert because the expert testimony under Tennessee's rules must substantially assist the trier of fact.

Through testimony, photographs, and diagrams, the process was explained, and under went cross-examination of opposing counsel and the close scrutiny of the Judge. The court admitted the testimony and affirmatively stated it met all applicable evidentiary and expert testimony standards.

After a two and one half day trial the jury deliberated for one and a half hours and ruled in favor of the insurance company and further found the plaintiff/insured had acted in bad faith.

The case is Charmaine J. Jones vs. Allstate Insurance Company, Docket No. 88888-3 T.D., Circuit Court of Shelby County (Memphis), Tennessee. Copies of the hearing transcript can be obtained from Michael P. Mills of MILLS & COOPER in Nashville Tennessee (615) 221-8218, who represented Allstate.


CASE #2 June 20, 2000

For the second time in a month Key Pathway Micro Examinations have been judicially endorsed as evidence admissible under the Daubert standard.

On June 20, 2000 a plaintiff?s attorney after being given the Daubert decision rendered in the Jones vs. Allstate case changed her tactics and requested a Daubert hearing on the process leading to the Key Pathway examination.

The judge revisited the Key Pathway process and then visited the entire process from examination and collection of the evidence at the scene to the Micro examination (Key Pathway).

The Judge ruled again that the entire process was admissible under the Daubert standards.

N.E.T.S. is now the only company that we know of that has had its entire process from the scene exam to the lab exam endorsed as admissible under the Daubert standard.

Copies of the hearing transcript can be obtained from Michael P. Mills of MILLS & COOPER in Nashville Tennessee (615) 221-8218, who represented Allstate.


CASE #3 January 22, 2001

Latest Court Decision for our side;

The United States District Court of Western District of Kentucky, Louisville Division rendered an order on January 22, 2001 in favor of State Farm Insurance Company and their experts using the Daubert Standard and Rule 702 of the Federal Rules of Evidence.

The court found the testimony of NETS technicians "Both Relevant and Reliable" and that their conclusions were "both relevant and helpful to a Jury in determining whether the vehicle was, indeed stolen". The court denied the Plaintiffs motion to exclude said testimony.

Copies of the Rule are available from NETS upon request.


CASE #4 May 26, 2004

Latest Court Decision for our side;

Key Pathway (r) , Micro-analysis of Tool marks on Locks and Keys was accepted under the Daubert Standard in Federal

court, Pensocola Florida. To date, no court has refused to allow the NETS technicians to testify regarding the process used by us.

They have passed both the Daubert and Frye tests several times. Copies of the Rule are available from NETS upon request.


Kathie Ann Ducharme, President/Owner
North Eastern Technical Services, Inc.

Letter from Dr. Gregory A. Robertshaw PhD.

June 26, 1999

To Whom It May Concern:

I, Gregory A. Robertshaw, am currently employed as a lead engineer at MITRE Corporation in Bedford, MA. My educational credentials include a B.S. from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and an M.S. and PhD in Physics from Brown University. I am very familiar with scientific method, simulation, and analysis.

While I have know of the work of North Eastern Technical Services (NETS) for several years, more recently I have had the opportunity to review the process by which keys and locks are examined in order to ascertain certain facts concerning the means by which locks are operated and/or defeated. For example, one can, in many circumstances, determine the characteristics of a key that was used to operate an automobile prior to its theft or destruction.

From my review I have concluded the following:

1. NETS has a competent and experienced technical staff.

2. NETS has demonstrated, via well-controlled experiments, the efficacy of their proprietary key-path analysis techniques.

3. The key-path analysis techniques are founded on sound physical principles that can be understood by any intelligent layman.

4. While physical evidence may not always be sufficient to arrive at a specific key-path determination, when such evidence does exist, conclusions can be reached with high confidence.

Overall, I am impressed with the professionalism of the NETS staff and the advances they have forged in Forensic Science.


Dr. Gregory A. Robertshaw
Lead Engineer