University of Hertfordshire

  • P. Fritz
  • A. A. Frick
  • W. Van Bronswijk
  • A. Beaudoin
  • S. Bleay
  • C. Lennard
  • S. W. Lewis
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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
Pages (from-to)410-425
JournalJournal of Forensic Identification
Journal publication date1 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017
Externally publishedYes


This study outlines the use of 1,2-indanedione-zinc chloride (Ind-ZnCl2) to treat fingermarks with a view to observing possible trends that may be present in a donor population. Fingermark samples from 131 donors were treated and subsequently evaluated using the grading scale devised by the Home Office Police Scientific Development Branch (now the Centre for Applied Science and Technology; CAST), United Kingdom. Out of a total of 1310 grades assigned, only 6 (0.5%) returned a score of 0, and 64.6% of all grades assigned were a 3 or 4. These tests indicated that grades for fingermarks developed within 3 days vary significantly, depending on the age of the donor and the washing of hands prior to deposition. Donors who did not wash their hands the hour prior to deposition, or were below the age of 25, were more likely to offer higher grades. With fresh fingermarks, no significant variation in fingermark grades was observed that could be associated with food consumption, sex of the donor, or recent use of cosmetics. The results for the treated 1-monthold fingermarks agreed with the findings for fresh fingermarks, with the exception of washing of hands. In this case, no significant difference was found between graded samples where donors had and had not washed their hands prior to deposition.

ID: 15394650