Sunday, 30 August 2015

The Law That Makes A Suspect A Criminal: Principle Of Forensic Science

Edmond Locard (1877 - 1966) was known as the Sherlock Holmes of France. He was a professor of forensic medicine and criminology at the University of Lyons. In 1910, he established the world’s first police crime laboratory.

 Two attic rooms including two assistants formed Locard's Lab given by the Lyons police department after persuading them for support. He developed laboratory methods to facilitate questioned document examination and recommended the use of "lip prints" for individual identification. Yes...lip prints!
Interestingly, he  acknowledged the influence of the "real Sherlock Holmes" for his role in fostering the idea of forensic science in modern crime detection.(the CSI-Effect?)
Locard was the first to state the fundamental principle of forensic science, now known as Locard’s Exchange Principle:

Wherever he steps, whatever he touches, whatever he leaves, even unconsciously, will serve as a silent witness against him.
  •  Not only his fingerprints, his footprints, palm prints 
  •  But his hair..
  •  The fibers from his clothes...
  •  The glass he breaks..
  •  The tool mark he leaves..
  •  The paint he scratches..
  •  The blood or semen he deposits or collects..
  •  lip prints..

All of these and more bear mute witness against him.

This is evidence that:
1. does not forget.

2. It is not confused by the excitement of the moment.

3.  It is not absent because human witnesses are.

4. It is factual evidence.

5. Physical evidence cannot be wrong,

6.  it cannot perjure itself,

7. it cannot be wholly absent.

Only human failure:
- To find it,
- Study it
- And understand it,
 can diminish its value.....

 Every contact leaves a trace. No escape...