Fingerprinting Unit 1


Unit 1 Objectives

1. You will be introduced to fingerprinting through a brief history

2. You will be able to identify the offenses for which a subject should be fingerprinted for

A Brief History of Fingerprints

Sir Francis Galton, a British anthropologist, began observing fingerprints as a means of identification in the 1880s. He established the individuality and permanence of fingerprints. Sir Galton was able to scientifically prove that fingerprints do not change over the course of an individuals lifetime. According to his calculations, the odds of two individual fingerprints being the same were 1 in 64 billion!

Printable Offenses

1. ANY Felony for which the subject is arrested for

2. ANY Misdemeanor defined in the Penal Law

3. Prints can be taken after an arrest has been made for any other offense if the police officer:

  (a) Cannot determine the identity of the arrested person
  (b) Has reasonable suspicion that identification of arrested person is not accurate
  (c) Reasonably suspects that the arrested person is wanted for commission of some other offense

Activity 1

For Activity 1, you will be separated into 5 different groups and given a different arrest scenario. Each group will discuss whether or not their scenario includes an offense for which the subject should be fingerprinted.


Discussing our conclusions of each scenario in Activity 1

Navigation links

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Fingerprinting Unit 2

Final Assessment