What is Frye Test?

The Frye test, also known as the Frye standard, is a rule of evidence used in some U.S. jurisdictions to determine the admissibility of scientific evidence, including expert testimony, in court.

It requires that the scientific evidence in question be based on principles or methods that are generally accepted within the relevant scientific community.

The Frye test originated from the 1923 case Frye v. United States, in which the court held that the results of a scientific test must be generally accepted as reliable within the relevant scientific community in order to be admissible as evidence.

The party seeking to admit scientific evidence must demonstrate that the principles or methods used in the evidence have gained general acceptance within the relevant scientific community.

The Frye test has been used to determine the admissibility of a wide range of scientific evidence in criminal cases, including DNA evidence, ballistics evidence, and forensic evidence. However, it has been criticized for being too restrictive and failing to account for the rapidly changing nature of scientific knowledge and technology.

In 1993, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, which established a new standard for the admissibility of scientific evidence.

Under the Daubert standard, judges are tasked with evaluating the relevance and reliability of scientific evidence, rather than relying solely on the general acceptance of the scientific principles or methods used.

Despite the shift towards the Daubert standard in some jurisdictions, the Frye test continues to be used in others, and its application remains an important issue in the field of criminology and criminal justice.