- Tuesday February 14th, 2012 :: 07:23 a.m. PST
Tustin's Tip of the Month: Catching an otherwise unknown criminal...
Fingerprints can be lifted from almost anything today. Years ago law enforcement personnel lifted prints from glass and other smooth surfaces but had not way to collect prints from rough or unusal surfaces.
With today's technology, fingerprints can be lifted from golf balls, feathers, car dashboards, paper towels, walls and even leather...And that's not all!
In addition to fingerprints left at crime scenes, DNA is left at crime scenes as well. DNA has primarily been used to identify victims or suspects in major cases such as sexual assaults and homicides. However, it has become an increasing powerful tool for solving property crimes as well. Television shows such as "CSI" have increased the public's awareness of DNA and how it's used to solve crimes, but remember, television shows are made for entertainment and are not reality. DNA is collected and analyzed more than ever before. DNA dramatically increases the number of suspects identified in property crimes. Studies have shown that identificatioon from DNA is five times greater than from fingerprints. DNA is collected from all types of areas such as jewelry boxes, steering wheels, weapons, clothing, soda cans, alcohol containers, cigarette butts, straws and numerous objects.
Both types of evidence are helping law enforcement identify criminals that would otherwise have been unknown because there are no witnesses to the crime. This is why it's so important for you to report crimes and stay clear of the crime scene until evidence can be collected.
Tustin, CA Police Department
300 Centennial Way
Tustin, CA 92780