An apt description of forensic evidence:
“…This is evidence that does not forget. It is not confused by the excitement of the moment. It is not absent because human witnesses are. It is factual evidence. Physical evidence cannot be wrong, it cannot perjure itself, it cannot be wholly absent. Only human failure to find it, study it, and understand it, can diminish its value.” Kirk, P.L. (1953) Crime Investigation (retrieved from http://www.forensicmag.com/article/2011/12/digital-forensics-cyber-exchange-principle)
You might look at the date of this quote and think: 1953 sounds about right because most of us don’t remember a time when forensic evidence wasn’t part of some big, splashy trial. But in reality, this was a wish list of what the crime investigation community hoped forensic science could achieve.
The first state appellate court decision to uphold the admission of DNA evidence was in 1988 (Andrews v. Florida). That was nearly 30 years ago, but the interesting part of the forensics story is that police officers, detectives, and crime scene technicians began collecting, storing, and preserving this type of evidence long before 1988. They did this before they had the tests, databases, and data to make that evidence useful.
I call this the very definition of faith. And this is why I love forensic science.