Latent fingerprint persistence and development techniques on wet surfaces

Michael Wood, Tim James

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageUndefined
JournalFingerprint Whorld
Issue number135
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009

Bibliographical note

This study aims to examine the persistence of latent fingerprints in various types of water and accelerant. Latent fingerprints were placed onto a paper surface and a plastic surface and submerged into the liquids for lengths of one hour, 24 hours and one week. Different development techniques were used on each surface type. Fingerprint persistence was found to last for over a week in some depending on the techniques used in development. All prints affected by different water types reacted similarly in terms of persistence and development, unlike those affected by the accelerant which was found to decrease in persistance from an early stage and have limited development techniques available. Oil Red O was found to be the best development technique on paper while Small Particle Reagent worked best on plastic. Results have shown that latent fingerprints can last for a prolonged time in liquids but must be developed with the correct techniques for optimum quality.

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