Woman responds to allegations that she lied about her credentials in DWI cases

Jessica Willey Image
Thursday, September 8, 2016
Toxicologist responds to claims she lied
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Toxicologist responds to claims she lied on her resume, Jessica Willey reports.

HARRIS COUNTY (KTRK) -- The Harris County District Attorney is asking defense attorneys to review a decade's worth of their DWI cases looking for possible errant testimony from a Harris County toxicology witness.

According to a notice sent by the District Attorney's office Tuesday night, "Dr. Fessessework Guale of the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences may have testified in past trials that she received her Master's (sic) of Science degree in Toxicology when, in fact, she received her Master's (sic) of Science degree in Physiological Sciences (with coursework and research in toxicology)."

A review of Dr. Guale's resume however reveals that her degree is from a veterinary college. She also holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine from an Ethiopian veterinary school as well.

"I did not lie. It's just a misunderstanding. I actually told the truth," said Guale when questioned about the credentials at her home in Pearland.

Reporter: "You say you have a Masters in toxicology. Is that true?"

Guale: "My Masters is in Physiological Sciences which toxicology is a sub-discipline of."

Guale added she is board certified in forensic toxicology and maintains the basic science behind the effects of alcohol is the same in animals and humans. Guale testifies about a defendant's condition based on their blood/alcohol content.

The Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association (HCCLA) is calling for criminal action against Guale, saying she perjured herself. Defendants may have been convicted based on her testimony, according to HCCLA President Tyler Flood.

The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences says Guale is being retrained. They are confident in her expertise despite the resume issues.

"There's nothing wrong, nothing to discipline. It's just a misunderstanding," Guale said.