How Fingerprints Solve Crime
Fingerprints are something people take time to contemplate about on a daily basis. In reality, unless somebody is attempting to eliminate pesky fingerprints out of mirrors or furniture, it is unlikely an ordinary person thinks of fingerprints at all.
But for some, fingerprints are a vital part of their job. Law enforcement officers and forensic experts spend hours thinking about how prints help solve crimes, and attempting to locate, gather, document and compare these special identifiers that could connect a particular individual to a specific offense. These people understand that a fundamental human feature is one of the most effective instruments in crime solution.
Each person is born with their particular set of fingerprints. No two fingerprints are alike; not on identical twins or even on a individual’s own hand. The formation of these unique whorls and lines that constitute an individual’s fingerprints happen at the fetal period and stay the same during one’s lifetime. This makes for a unique mark which can positively identify one person against another, particularly useful when a person of interest has an existing record of fingerprints on file with police, or other government institutions.
Fingerprints comprise a set of swirling lines. These lines shape and pattern themselves in a way that makes each fingerprint unique. Regardless of the unbelievable number of fingerprints, there are only seven distinct kinds of lines which make up fingerprints. These lines can start, stop or split at any part of the print. The shapes, lengths, angles, heights and widths create billions of different prints.
The use of these unique attributes makes it easy to see how fingerprints can help solve crimes. Leaving a fingerprint is like dropping a calling card at the crime scene. There are a few unique ways fingerprints get left behind by careless crooks. The most common way is by oil or fat that’s transferred by the finger onto an object such as a doorframe or desk. Amino acids from the finger might also leave discernable marks. Fingerprints may also be detected as an impression on a soft substance like putty. Finally, they are sometimes drawn up by substances on the finger such as paint or blood.
Uncovering fingerprints to help resolve a crime could be carried out in a couple of ways. Adhering powders onto new fingerprints will make the powder adhere to the grease making the fingerprint visible. Another technique is using a few drops of cyanoacrylate. Whenever these drops are heated up, they vaporized, and the smoke attaches to the fingerprint leaving a clear white print. Specialised crime scene lab equipment may also locate fingerprints, but, not all jurisdictions have access to all these equipment.
Fingerprints may be stored for further investigation in several of ways, including: taking photos f the printing, saving it on a rubber lifter, keeping the original ground the print was on and copying the print using digital technology.
Ideally, from a crime-solving standpoint, hopefully, the interconnected nature of the society will gradually result in having all of the fingerprint databases connected for simple cross-reference.