David Colarusso: The data scientist at law

His first job out of law school in late 2011 was as a public defender in Massachusetts, immediately handling arraignments and bail hearings and soon trying cases. He’s still at the Committee for Public Counsel Services, which handles representation for indigent criminal defendants statewide. But he doesn’t take on cases anymore, though he sometimes analyzes and maybe tweaks huge batches of cases to improve the agency’s work—and justice itself. Colarusso, 37, is a hacker. He is happiest when doing a deep dive into an information system, finding problems and creating fixes. He did just that in the wake of the state drug lab scandal in which a chemist had falsified tests of drug samples, tagging them positive, in tens of thousands of cases. The discrepancies were discovered in 2012, yet…


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