pc-crash: Man rightfully Wins New Trial in Car-Accident Trial

Subjects related to the reconstruction and simulation of Occupants in vehicles and Pedestrians struck by vehicles, ATB & ATB clones #ATB #MADYMO #MultiBody
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MSI
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Posts: 2005
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 12:37 pm

pc-crash: Man rightfully Wins New Trial in Car-Accident Trial

Post by MSI »

From 2005, moving items from former News page of mchenrysoftware.com:
  • "Computer programs can be used…However the mere fact that the results came from a computer does not make the answers accurate. You should always make a careful review of the input variables and how sensitive the outputs are to these inputs. This applies whether you are using a computer or a hand-held calculator". From Traffic Accident Reconstruction, Northwestern Traffic Institute, §-page:68-32

    “As scientists, engineers and accident reconstructionists, we should not let the unlimited possibilities of making anything look real (with animation) obscure our duty to perform a careful and detailed engineering analysis while also continually testing and evaluating the applied techniques, including computer programs, to achieve the most accurate reconstruction possible”. From McHenry Accident Reconstruction 2003, McHenry & McHenry
February 2005: Brian G. McHenry assisted the defense in obtaining a new trial (and releasing a wrongly convicted seriously injured man from jail) in a case in which the PC-CRASH computer program was inappropriately applied to determine who was the driver of the vehicle. The State of Washington appellate court decision includes the statement:
  • "We conclude that within reasonable probabilities, but for the error in admitting the computer-generated simulation evidence, the outcome of his trial might have been different."
The following are links to related information:
  • The Seattle Times news report, Feb 16, 2005
  • The appellate court decision (This is a local copy that has been added to our site for your convenience)
    • Docket Number: 51647-7-I
    • Title of Case: State of Washington, Respondent v. Michael Sipin, Appellant
    • File Date: 02/14/2005
  • The opinion has since been moved by Washington Courts to http://www.legalwa.org/
  • Opinion is also available on findlaw.com
  • The Declaration by Mr. McHenry filed with the court which includes the following important conclusions:
    • After over 40 years of research on occupant simulation there is no model in existence today which has been validated as a generally predictive model for detailed occupant kinematics in any type of real-world accidents.
    • Accident reconstruction programs and occupant simulation models are subject to limitations imposed by the mathematical idealizations and the simplifying assumptions inherent in any mathematical model of the physical world.
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MSI
Site Admin
Posts: 2005
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 12:37 pm

Re: Pc-crash: Man rightfully Wins New Trial in Car-Accident Trial

Post by MSI »

Recently was alerted that the opinion is now publicly available on the FindLaw website:
    • Court of Appeals of Washington,Division 1.
      STATE of Washington, Respondent, v. Michael L. SIPIN, Appellant.
      No. 51647-7-I.
      Decided: February 14, 2005


    which includes:
    • Although much of the evidence provided by McHenry and Allin clearly goes to the weight to be accorded Heusser's testimony, much of it also relates to admissibility of the evidence under Frye, because it illustrates the limitations that two members of the relevant scientific community see in the computer program at issue-and explains why it is that the relevant group of scientists have not reached consensus that PC-CRASH is reliable for the uses that Heusser attempted to make of the program for purposes of this trial.

      We conclude that within reasonable probabilities, but for the error in admitting the computer-generated simulation evidence, the outcome of his trial might have been different.
      Reversed and remanded for a new trial.
DISCUSSION/COMMENTS:
  • This appellate level ruling is important as the appeals court carefully examined the evidence and rightfully determined that the MultiBody Option of pc-crash WAS INAPPROPRIATE for the purposes it was used in the subject case (identifying the driver of a vehicle)
Here is a local copy of the ruling FindLaw's Court of Appeals of Washington case and opinions
Quick LINKS: ->HOT TOPICS<- ->msmac3D LEASE pricing!<- ->McHenryForum Index<-
Question? Comment? Please email forum@mchenrysoftware.com
(c)McHenry Software ALL Rights Reserved.
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