G o o d  M o r n i n g !


Monday, April 23, 2012
The purpose of the Detail is to help keep you informed of the current state of affairs in the latent print community, to provide an avenue to circulate original fingerprint-related articles, and to announce important events as they happen in our field.
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Breaking NEWz you can UzE...
by Stephanie Potter

The Daytona Beach News-Journal 04-19-12

Arkansas man arrested in 1995 Deltona rape

A man suspected of raping a woman in her Deltona home 17 years ago was found in Arkansas after deputies revisited the cold case and found a match for the fingerprints they had on file, a Volusia County sheriff's spokesman said.


Norwich Bulletin 04-16-12

Investigators recount bad leads in Norwich murder trial

The only match, from a plastic bag inside Mallove’s stolen van, came from Nicholas Gardner — a Norwich man who admitted breaking into Mallove’s van while it was parked outside at the impound lot at the city garage.


Bethlehem Patch 04-20-12

Fingerprint on Candy Bar Leads to Arrest

Inside the bag were two unopened Twix candy bars. The candy was taken into evidence and a “clear, latent fingerprint” of Dees’ left ring finger was found on one of the wrappers, according to the court record.


KSAT.com 04-18-12

Man accused of breaking into SW Side business

San Antonio police said fingerprints on a broken window at the scene of a Southwest Side burglary are what led them to a suspect.


The Press Association 04-19-12

Police chief sorry over fingerprint

"…the Campbell Report will have a positive effect on forensics and fingerprint practices here in Scotland." As a result of the Fingerprint Inquiry, Sir Anthony recommended that fingerprint evidence should be "recognised as opinion evidence and not fact".

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 No website updates this week


 No announcements either


 we looked at the Frontline broadcast related to forensic science


 we look at some recently posted SWGFAST documents




Testimony review is a required component of a Quality Assurance Program.

1    Scope

Testimony review evaluates the performance of the examiner in legal proceedings. Each examiner whose duties include providing testimony shall have their testimony reviewed at least annually.

2    Testimony Review

2.1   The minimum criteria to be reviewed shall include whether the examiner effectively:

·         Prepared for trial.

·         Exhibited professional demeanor and appearance.

·         Described their qualifications, duties, and analysis.

·         Demonstrated verbal and non-verbal communication.

·         Testified within the limits of their expertise.

·         Conveyed scientific results to the court.

·         Presented testimony in an un-biased manner.

·         Presented demonstrative exhibits.

2.2   Testimony review mechanisms may consist of any of the following:

·         Use of a testimony evaluation form (sample form in Appendix A)

·         Communication with court officials

·         Review of written transcript, video, or audio recording of testimony

·         Personal observation of testimony

2.3   If testimony is not given during the year, that fact shall be documented.

2.4   The testimony review form will be discussed with the examiner.

  The testimony procedure should also prescribe the corrective action that is to be taken should the review be less than satisfactory.




Standard AFIS ranks and scores cannot currently be considered a mathematical model for

assessing the likelihood or probability that a subject deposited a particular friction ridge

impression. The purpose of this document is to clarify that AFIS ranks and scores have no role in

formulating and stating conclusions based on ACE-V.

Ranks and scores are mechanisms of an AFIS system that provide information about a particular

search relative to prospective candidates whose impressions are contained in the AFIS database.

They provide possible matching candidates as determined by automated search mechanisms to

an examiner.

AFIS does not replace the human expert role in Analysis, Comparison, Evaluation, or Verification

(ACE-V). It is inappropriate to use AFIS scores in lieu of Evaluation or Verification decisions. If

testifying in court to having followed the ACE-V methodology in response to a “lights-out” AFIS

identification, the examiner must have performed a traditional ACE examination separate from the

system determination. Additionally a second examiner must have conducted a Verification. This

would also apply to searching latent prints in an AFIS database. A latent print examiner cannot

use an AFIS system result as the verification step of ACE-V.




It is the position of SWGFAST that “individualization” is synonymous with the term “identification” as used

in friction ridge examination. Both are defined as: “the decision by an examiner that there are sufficient

discriminating friction ridge features in agreement to conclude that two areas of friction ridge impressions

originated from the same source. Individualization of an impression to one source is the decision that the

likelihood the impression was made by another (different) source is so remote that it is considered as a

practical impossibility” (SWGFAST Standards for Examining Friction Ridge Impressions and Resulting

Conclusions 9/13/11 ver 1.0 posted 10/26/11).

The term individualization was originally introduced in latent print examinations to provide a more specific

term than identification. In the friction ridge community, identification has historically meant association

with a specific individual, while in some forensic disciplines it is used to denote the correspondence of

class characteristics.

SWGFAST recognizes that individualization has been used within the latent print community to mean “to

the exclusion of all others”. The ability of a latent print examiner to individualize a single latent

impression, with the implication that they have definitively excluded all other humans in the world, is not

supported by research and was removed from SWGFAST’s definition of individualization.


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Until next Monday morning, don't work too hard or too little.

Have a GREAT week!

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