Material for a 3-hour lesson, part of the Border Police Course, developed by the Kosovo Police Service School
Establishing the identity of a suspect or a victim is one of the most important purposes of physical evidence. The most positive means of identifying people is through fingerprints. Fingerprints form on a person before birth and remain unchanged throughout life. With few exceptions, everyone has fingerprints. In this lesson, the term fingerprints includes all types of prints, including finger, palm, toe, and the sole of the foot. Locating and preserving fingerprints is one of the most important responsibilities of a Forensic Technician when processing a crime scene. You as KPS Investigators must be aware of what the FTs can achieve using forensic technology.
One of the most valuable clues at the scene of a crime are fingerprints. Fingerprints are markings that are left on a surface by a human hand and have the same markings as the skin of the fingers. Skin and ridge patterns are unique to each person. Unless their hands are covered with gloves or some other form of protection while committing a crime, criminals cannot avoid leaving clues in the form of fingerprints. Prints may be left when criminals take hold of an object or support themselves with their hands. Fingerprints sometimes appear in the form of a highly visible substance, such as: blood, grease, oil, or ink.
The purpose of this lesson is to introduce the police officers to the value of fingerprints and the importance they serve in identifying a suspect. The KPS officers will learn various types, patterns, characteristics, and classifications of fingerprints, as well as, the different techniques that are used to develop and preserve them. The task of developing, preserving and comparing fingerprints will belong to the KPS Forensic Technicians.
At the conclusion of this lesson, students will be able to: