Fingerprints and Palm Prints

Fingerprints and Palm Prints

Fingerprints can have several different applications in litigation. The first is showing a person was in a particular place, such as a crime scene. Other evidential values which are often overlooked are fingerprints on anonymous notes or other documents where someone denies a connection to or authorship of a particular document. We have the ability to develop fingerprints which have been on paper for up to several years.

The theory for the use of fingerprints and palmprints as a positive means of identification is based on two principles:

* 1) They are “permanent” in that they are formed in the fetal stage, prior to birth, and remain the same throughout lifetime, barring disfiguration by scarring, until sometime after death when decomposition sets in.

* 2) They are “unique” in that no two fingerprints, or friction ridge area, made by different fingers or areas, are the same (or are identical in their ridge characteristic arrangement).