Jasmine M. Drake, PhD, is a fellow in the Center for Justice Research (CJR) and an assistant professor in the Administration of Justice Department in the School of Public Affairs at Texas Southern University. She currently serves as a Governor-appointed commissioner on the Texas Forensic Science Commission. Drake’s research projects focus on the development of reliable and objective methods for the collection and analysis of evidentiary materials in an effort to mitigate the effects of cognitive bias and the unreliable use of forensic feature- comparative methods, such as DNA, latent print analysis, ballistic test interpretations, bite-mark comparisons, and hair and fiber testing, which are contributing factors to the large number of wrongful convictions that have disproportionally plagued fragile communities. More specifically, her research focuses on the evaluation and error management of forensic methods and their resulting expert witness testimonies in wrongful conviction cases with the goal of identifying root-cause analyses in order to recommend best practices and the implementation of policies, which will address the imbalance of justice faced by fragile communities.
Previously, Drake worked as a forensic chemist at the Drug Enforcement Administration in Dallas, TX. During her tenure at DEA, Drake’s primary professional responsibilities included controlled substance identification, quality control testing, and the analysis of evidence submitted by law enforcement officials. She also assisted with clandestine laboratory operations and testified findings of technical laboratory reports in court.
Drake has also worked in the Department of Forensic Science at Sam Houston State University as an assistant professor. Additionally, Drake has worked as a K-12 public school teacher in Irving, Texas and as a National Academy of Sciences postdoctoral researcher at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD. She earned a B.Sc. in Chemistry from Southern University and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Louisiana State University.