News

Police Practice Print Lifting

In order to give burglars and other lawbreakers a


less than even chance of getting away with your


property, the Snoqualmie Police Department took a short


refresher course last week in the art of finding and lifting


fingerprints from various surfaces.


The course, led by Harley A. Kirkman, a


fingerprint specialist with the Washington State Patrol, gave


the Snoqualmie officers a chance to "brush up" not only


the prints themselves, but on techniques for locating


and identifying such evidence.


According to Snoqualmie Police Chief Bill


Massey, taking fingerprints is "something you've got to work


at constantly or you'll begin to lose it." He said that


by keeping his officers in practice, the chances that


they will be able to use fingerprints from a real crime


scene against a suspect in court are greatly increased.


Kirkman is one of two specialists who travel


around the state, visiting small police departments which


have difficulty sending men to classes held at various


police academies. Instead, the classes are brought to the


departments, and the officers are able to work in their


own facilities.


For his demonstration, and to let the officers have


a crack at lifting a fingerprint, Kirkman used several


flat surfaces on desks in the police office. The officers set


to work dusting, brushing, picking up the visible print


with tape and pressing the impression onto white cards.


Chief Massey said the ability to locate and lift


fingerprints is a valuable tool in police work and he


was glad that Kirkman could take the time to visit his


department.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Dec 17
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.