Articles from The Science Of Fingerprints
The Plain Arch
Illegible Inked Prints
The foregoing has dealt with the securing of fingerprints of unknown
deceased persons for identification purposes. The basis for such
action is the presumptive possibility that the unknowns had been
fingerprinted previously and through this medium might be identified.
Another type of problem, however, arises with the finding of a
deceased infant. It can be safely assumed that the possibility of
there being in existence a set of known fingerprints of the infant is
extremely remote. Nevertheless, in view of the fact that many
hospitals throughout the country, as part of the general routine of
recording a birth, secure the infant's footprints, it would follow
that there could be a remote possibility of identifying the deceased
infant through its footprints. The foregoing principles and procedures
would then apply in securing the foot impression of a deceased infant.
It is fully realized that in practically all cases involving the
finding of an abandoned infant corpse the infant is probably
illegitimate issue and delivery did not occur in a hospital, but there
have been instances where such was not the case.
The importance of securing footprints of deceased infants killed in a
common disaster cannot be overemphasized. Such disasters may involve
the death of infants of lawful issue, and in many instances there are
hospital footprint records available which may prove of value as a
positive means of identification.
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