Why Fingerprint Analysis Is Used For The Sake Of Forensic Analysis

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Introduction Friction ridge analysis, or fingerprint analysis has been used for the sake of forensic analysis for over 100 years, and has perpetually been considered the most reliable technique of analysis. However, in recent years, its reliability has begun to crumble due to certain standards set in the United States of America. In this essay, fingerprint analysis will be briefly described, along with the framework of ACE-V in which analysts work from- looking primarily at its weaknesses and criticisms. The Daubert standard will be outlined and a how a primary assumption of fingerprint analysis violates a number of these standards. Also, to further strengthen the case as to why fingerprint analysis should not be considered so heavily in…show more content…
Every single ridge has a row of sweat pores. When sweat seeps out of these pores, it runs over the ridges. Thus, when a finger, palm, or foot touches a surface, an impression is made which in technical terms is known as a latent print. However, when a print is collected from a police station directly from the source, this is known as an exemplar print (Haber and Haber, 2008; Creswell, 2015). The “science” of fingerprint analysis rests on three, recently, controversial assumptions: Firstly, the ridge patterns never change during the life of a person; secondly, no two individuals will have the same ridge patterns; lastly, the transferability of an impression of that uniqueness to another surface. (Gianelli, 2006). This allowed for fingerprint analysts to form a procedure which other experts around the world are invited to use, known as ACE-V. ACE-V ACE-V which is an acronym which stands for Analysis in which analysts categorise certain features of the print. Comparison where the latent print is compared to the known print of a suspect. Evaluation is the stage in which the examiner is expected to make an inference as to whether the latent print matches the print of the suspect or not. Finally, the process of Verification whereby, the analyst sends their data to another expert to confirm their inference (Lawless, 2009). While this loose methodology has been used seemingly successfully over the years, levels of
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