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Simpson Defense Attacks Criminalist


Dennis Fung, the criminalist in charge of gathering blood samples and other evidence in the O.J. Simpson double-murder trial, appeared almost punch-drunk Tuesday as he reeled under the hammering interrogation of a defense attorney intent on raising questions about sloppy collection techniques.

Besides attempting to discredit Fung, defense attorney Barry Scheck was also laying the groundwork for future expert witnesses who will testify about the DNA tests performed on blood samples in the case - samples that Scheck got Fung to admit were stored, at least temporarily, in plastic envelopes that could permit the samples to deteriorate.

Scheck compared that deterioration, caused by moisture from the samples providing a breeding ground for bacteria, to milk turning sour.

And, in a dramatic series of questions supported by a videotape of Fung at the crime scene, Scheck showed the criminalist handling what may be an important piece of evidence with his bare hand - despite Fung’s insistence it didn’t happen.

That particular piece of videotape had been turned over earlier to the prosecution - on the tail end of a tape of other evidence - but either none of the three prosecution lawyers in court Tuesday had viewed that part of the tape, or none realized its significance, because all three appeared surprised and irritated when it was played.

Also Tuesday, the defense filed a motion asking Judge Lance Ito to investigate whether the prosecution was selectively investigating jurors to get those biased toward Simpson removed from the jury.


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