Data selection and confounding in the court case of Lucia de Berk - Statistics > ApplicationsReport as inadecuate




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Abstract: The nurse Lucia de Berk was convicted by the Dutch courts as a serial killerwith 7 murders and 3 attempts at murder in three hospitals where she worked.The nurse however always professed her innocence and indeed was never observedin such an act of murder. The courts based their decision on circumstantialevidence and upon the use of statistics. In the appeal court, the use ofstatistical calculations was repealed but the use of -data- and -statisticalinsights- were not excluded. The trial hinged importantly on the role ofstatistics and data gathering. It appears that data selection and confoundingfeature strongly in this case. The notion of -nominal correlation- can be usedto highlight those two features. This suggests a mistrial with the convictionof an innocent person.



Author: Thomas Colignatus

Source: https://arxiv.org/



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