Download PDF by Edward Hueske: Firearms and Fingerprints

By Edward Hueske

Firearms facts exam and fingerprint comparability have had an extended and fascinating background. The position of fingerprints in human id can truly be traced again a number of thousand years. the advance of the technological know-how of fingerprint comparability and the medical exam of firearms, in spite of the fact that, begun within the early nineteenth century. The objective of the renovation of actual proof is to affiliate every bit of facts with its accountable resource, permitting forensic scientists to reply to questions concerning the who, what, whilst, the place, how, and why of a criminal offense. ''Firearms and Fingerprints'' lines those early beginnings and the icons that laid the foundation for the present technological know-how.

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Would-be examiners must pass a written examination that focuses on actual comparison of questioned prints to known prints. Many agencies require their examiners to become certified by IAI as part of the conditions for employment. To date, no courts have required certification in order for a fingerprint examiner to be allowed to testify, but that could change. Firearms certification, on the other hand, is a relatively new program that has been developed by AFTE. This is currently a strictly voluntary program, and no agencies or courts require it, although this also may change as the trend of requiring expert witnesses to have formal credentials continues to expand.

In the roughly 100 years that fingerprints have been used for identification purposes, no one has managed to falsify the claim of uniqueness by showing that fingers of two persons had identical fingerprints. Furthermore, other than growth and scarring, no one has shown that the distinctive characteristics of one person’s fingerprints changed over time. This is why fingerprint examination, or dactylography, is such a reliable science. indd 39 9/8/08 4:20:6 PM 40 firearms and fingerprints Johannes Purkinje and the First Attempt at Fingerprint Classification Fingerprinting owes its prominence to certain icons whose research and discipline greatly advanced the field.

For example, the simple question as to how a shooter’s feet or hands may have been positioned at some point during a shooting may certainly be approximated, but it is unlikely that their exact positions may be determined except in rare situations. Reconstructions take into account all the available documentation (reports, affidavits, photos, videos, sketches, notes, and the like), the physical evidence, and witness accounts in order to develop a likely scenario that best fits all this information.

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