I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania in the Department of Criminology and the Department of Statistics and Data Science. My training is primarily in statistics and data science, and my work is driven by interdisciplinary projects in public policy, public health, and forensic science.
I am interested in the intersection of statistics and the law, particularly how and whether we can (and should!) answer legal questions by using statistics. I have written about nonparametric estimation in causal inference, as it relates to the legal question of whether one can attribute an outcome (e.g. cancer) to an exposure (e.g. exposure to a harmful chemical).
I have also written about the statistical foundations of forensic science. I have studied the proper way to state a conclusion in pattern-matching disciplines (e.g. fingerprints, hair microscopy, toolmarks identification) and what information a forensic examiner should not have access to when analyzing evidence. I am currently working on an algorithm for toolmark identification.
I often serve as an expert witness and consultant in trials. I have discussed the statistical foundations of forensic science (in cases regarding hair microscopy and toolmarks) and the basis for statistical arguments in child abuse (shaken baby syndrome). I enjoy explaining complex statistical or machine learning ideas to a lay audience, especially in high-stakes situations, such as the law or public health.
I am currently serving as the Chair of the American Statistical Association’s Advisory Committee on Forensic Science. I am a Faculty Fellow at the Crime and Justice Policy Lab at UPenn, a member of the CCEB Center for Causal Inference, and an affiliate of the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice.
I am the mother of twins, and I am married to Justin Humphreys.
Last updated: August 2022.