Non Porous Evidence Processing

335 words | 2 page(s)

During criminal investigations, fingerprints are the most common forms of physical evidence that can be identified at crime scenes and it is normally important to identify any print that can be found. Fingerprints are important since they can be used to identify who was at the crime scene and what they may or may not have touched.

A good example of a nonporous item that can be found at a crime scene is a glass made of either plastic or glass. Nonporous items are items made of glass, metal, marble or even glass. To identify the fingerprint, I would use the powder technique whereby the powder will tend to adhere to the residue from the fingerprint thus revealing where the fingerprint is. To spread the powder I would either use a brush or preferably the magnetic powder and magnet technique. Using the brush tends to smudge the print thus the reason as to why I would prefer the magnetic powder. Using powder with a contrasting color helps in the visibility of the print. At a crime scene I expect to find this item in the living room or even the kitchen on a surface like a table or the kitchen counter or even on the floor broken into pieces.

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Cyanoacrylate is a method used to identify fingerprints whereby the vapors of cyanoacrylate interact with the chemicals found on the fingerprint forming a white film and one can photograph the visible print or copy it on tape strips for identification. There are two ways in which this method can be enhanced. One method is by using a powder with a contrasting color and secondly by using photo editing software. Both of this techniques enhance the visibility of the fingerprint. The health hazard involved with using this technique is breathing in the fumes of the cyanoacrylate which is toxic.

  • Gardner, R. M. (2012). Practical crime scene processing and investigation. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.
  • Gilbert, J. N. (2004). Criminal investigation. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Pearson, Prentice Hall.

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