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That Chemist From “Making A Murderer” Is A Science Badass

She isn't the hero we deserve, but she is the one we need.

Posted on January 4, 2016, at 4:39 p.m. ET

This is Janine Arvizu, a hero analytical chemist and a laboratory data quality auditor whose testimony appeared in Netflix's true-crime documentary Making a Murderer.


She reviewed the argument that Steven Avery, the documentary's protagonist, couldn't have had his blood planted on a crime scene because a new test said so.


The test was based on finding a chemical called EDTA. It is found in the evidence vials that store blood. If it was found in Avery's blood samples taken from victim Teresea Halbach's car, then it would have suggested someone took his blood (which was in the possession of the police) and planted it on the scene of the crime. The test, which was conducted by the FBI at the request of the state with little documentation, didn't detect it.

The science presented by the FBI's expert could reasonably be described as not fit for peer review. Here's Avery's lawyer and the expert in question:


This is a patently absurd statement and Arizu, all around science badass that she is, isn't afraid to call it out in her capacity as a defense witness:


Shining beacon of logic and reason that she is, she also pointed out that not detecting EDTA does not mean it's not there, especially with no documentation about the test's sensitivity.

If only we could all live the #ScienceLife as hard as her!

Netflix / Alex Kasprak / BuzzFeed

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.