Breaking NEWz you can UzE...
compiled by Jon Stimac
Top QC Calls for Review of Fingerprint Cases –
- March 30, 2006
...the McKie case has stuck at the very root of the
Bloody Print Led to Defendant, CSI Testifies
- March 29, 2006
...a surprising discovery above the lifeless body of a
Prints Fingered Restaurant Thief
LANCASHIRE EVENING TELEGRAPH, UK - March 28, 2006 ...a man
who broke into a restaurant was traced by fingerprints left at the
'No Legal Reason' to Hide McKie Files
SCOTSMAN, UK - March 27, 2006 ...legal figures contradicted
the Executive's claims that making public secret reports would
undermine a basic principle of Scots law...
Recent CLPEX Posting Activity
containing new posts
Moderated by Steve Everist
Help w/ Master's Thesis
Rebecca W 319 Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:44 pm
formation of friction ridge skin
mary ellen holmberg 287 Fri Mar 31, 2006 3:05 am
[ Poll ] "Point" Standard
ccpereira 637 Wed Mar 29, 2006 7:02 pm
nator9692 1270 Wed Mar 29, 2006 5:59 pm
LPE Opening - Viva Las Vegas!
Alice Maceo 204 Tue Mar 28, 2006 5:55 pm
Weekly Detail March 27th
Graham F 219 Mon Mar 27, 2006 4:01 pm
[ Poll ] McKie / Peter Swan
Curious 781 Mon Mar 27, 2006 12:02 am
UPDATES ON CLPEX.com
Updated the Detail Archives
Filled the 3 open positions for in-country DoD Biometrics - thank you to
those who expressed interest and applied.
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LAS VEGAS METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPARTMENT
PERSONNEL ACTION NOTICE 06-074
LATENT PRINT EXAMINER II
Starting Annual Salary $59,139 - $71,949
Annual Salary Range $59,139 - $87,539
OPENING DATE: Wednesday, March 22, 2006
CLOSING DATE: Open until a sufficient number of qualified individuals
have submitted application packages.
Latent Print Examiner II conducts fingerprint comparisons of latent prints
and finger and palm print exemplar files; and
performs a variety of tasks relative to assigned areas of responsibility.
The eligibility list established from this recruitment will be in effect for
More detail can be found at the web link:
examined the multi-faceted world of forensics,
biometric technology, and investigation.
Steve Scarborough brings us a look at how
to incorporate ACE into latent print examiner testimony summation.
Testimony Highlighting ACE
by Steve Scarborough
It is always good to share ideas and concepts with fellow fingerprint
experts. Recently, when talking to the Wertheims, some stimulating
conversation revolved around testimony techniques and I was inspired to
compile these paragraphs.
The concept is to highlight ACE methodology when testifying and to add
ACE to the summation statement. This may be old hat to many fingerprint
experts out there with Ridgeology training and classes, but there may be
some fingerprint experts that that mqy want to take a look at certain
aspects of this style of testimony.
Most fingerprint experts adapt, improve, and adjust their testimony as
their experience, training and the knowledge increases.
Many experts have adapted the standard question list that is given to
prosecutors to include questions about ACE methodology.
Many experts have just included that concept and all the various levels of
ridgeology and ACE that apply to fingerprint comparisons within their
One approach to testimony for the fingerprint expert would be to also
add ACE methodology terms in the summation. Many of us were taught by the
FBI and at training schools to add a summation statement to wrap up our
conclusions. These summation statements usually
involve something like “based upon my examination of the inked prints in the
name of John Doe and the latent print from the gun, it is my conclusion that
they were both made by the same person.”
An approach using ACE might be a summation statement like: “After my
Analysis of the latent print, observing and noting the clarity and quantity
of ridge characteristics, ridge flow and ridge paths on the latent print.
And then after my Comparison between the latent print and the known prints
of John Doe, noting the areas and features in agreement, I made an
Evaluation of the all the unique features and arrived at the conclusion that
both impressions were made by the same person.”
A longer version of ACE summation testimony might proceed as follows:
“I analyzed all the variables of the friction ridge
impression in question and noted all the many variables of a latent print
such as surface and processing technique. I analyzed the latent print to
determine if the quality and quantity of the latent print ridge paths, the
clarity of all three levels of ridge detail was sufficient to proceed with
If this had not occured I would have stopped my examination. I then
proceeded on to the next phase.
“I analyzed the known print to determine if it was of sufficient
quality for comparison so I could proceed with the process. I then made a
the set of
"This is the point that I used my observation of the 3
levels of detail to orient the print, and using focal points made
comparisons with the ridge formations in the latent and known print.
A side by side comparison was conducted to determine if the three
levels of detail in the two impressions were in agreement.
noted all those unique formations and ridge paths that were in agreement.
“I then made my Evaluation based upon the analysis and comparison. I
made my conclusion based upon the information I observed in these
impressions and based upon my training, experience and knowledge.
“I determined that there was agreement between the friction ridge
formations, in sequence having sufficient uniqueness to individualize. The
unique features that I observed in the latent print are in agreement with
those in the known print.
“It is my conclusion that the latent from the crime scene and the
known prints of John Doe were made by the same person.”
Obviously, the individual fingerprint expert can choose which portions
of these statements are right for their style of comparison testimony.
These statements can be shortened or expanded, but the essence is to
incorporate ACE into the summation statement. Highlighting ACE in the
summation is a proactive approach to fingerprint comparison testimony.
Wertheim, P. Qualifying as an Expert Fingerprint Witness: Designing a
Set of Questions to Assist in Court Testimony. J. For. Ident. 1990,
Scarborough, Steve A Comprehensive Question List for the Courtroom:
Re-evaluating and Revising the Qualifying Question List for Latent Print
Testimony J. For. Ident. 2002, 52 (6)
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Have a GREAT week!