A Welcome Exchange on the Scientific Status of Fingerprinting

Law, Probability and Risk, Vol. 7, pp. 85-86, 2007

2 Pages Posted: 9 Sep 2009

Date Written: August 19, 2007

Abstract

Ten years ago, the notion that a top academic journal should publish an exchange on the scientific validation of fingerprint evidence would have been a non-starter. Until then, all but a few self-interested defendants and defense attorneys believed that when a fingerprint examiner matched a crime scene print (a latent print) to a suspect’s reference print, the evidence was absolute and irrefutable. A fingerprint match proved identity if not guilt. Today, however, scientists, attorneys and others are taking a hard look at the forensic sciences in general and fingerprint evidence in particular. The oft-repeated claims that fingerprints are unique and that the source of fingerprint fragments can be identified with certainty have received special attention.

Keywords: Fingerprints, forensic sciences, evidence

Suggested Citation

Koehler, Jonathan J., A Welcome Exchange on the Scientific Status of Fingerprinting (August 19, 2007). Law, Probability and Risk, Vol. 7, pp. 85-86, 2007. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1469658

Jonathan J. Koehler (Contact Author)

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

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