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How Fingerprints Solve Crime

Fingerprints are something most people do not spend lots of time considering on a daily basis. Actually, unless somebody is trying to eliminate pesky fingerprints from mirrors or furniture, it is unlikely an ordinary person thinks of fingerprints in any way.

But for a few people, fingerprints are an essential portion of their job life. Law enforcement officers and forensic experts spend hours thinking about how fingerprints solve crimes as they try to find, collect, document and compare those special identifiers that can link someone to a particular crime. These people understand that a simple human characteristic which most people for granted, can be among the very best instrument in crime solving.

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 one of a kind whorls and lines which compose a person’s fingerprints are formed at the fetal stage and stay the same during their whole lifespan. 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 are made up of a set of swirling lines. How these lines shape and design themselves is exactly what makes every fingerprint unique. Despite the huge number of distinct fingerprints, there are only seven unique kinds of lines that make up fingerprints. These lines can begin, stop or divide at any location within the print. The shapes, angles, and lengths create billions of unique prints.

Using their unique attributes, it becomes simple to see precisely how fingerprints can help solve crimes. Leaving a fingerprint is similar to leaving 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 transferred by the finger to an object like a doorframe. Amino acids in the finger may even leave a discernable mark. Fingerprints may also be detected as an impression on a soft substance like putty. Lastly, they can be drawn up using a material on the finger such as 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 way is by utilizing a few drops of cyano-acrylate or superglue. When these drops are warmed, 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 can be stored for further investigation in many of ways, such as: taking photographs of the print and storing them on a tape or rubber lifter.

Ideally, from a crime-solving perspective, it is hoped that the interconnected nature of our society will gradually lead to having all fingerprint databases linked for effortless cross-reference.

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