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Director’s Corner: Explaining the Recent Rise in Violent Crime

As Director of NIJ, it is my responsibility to ensure we use science to address the multitude of complex criminal justice challenges we face today. Over the past year, the increase in homicides in several American cities has captured the attention of this Administration, respective federal agencies, local police departments, and media outlets. Although many debates have ensued and commentaries abound, objective, scientific work to inform such conversations has been limited.

Impression Evidence: Strengthening the Disciplines of Fingerprints, Firearms, Footwear, and Other Pattern and Impression Sciences Through Research

June, 2010

Forensic examinations involving specific forensic science disciplines are typically dependent upon qualitative analyses and expert interpretation of observed patterns based on a scientific foundation, rather than quantitative results. These disciplines include latent fingerprints, questioned documents, footwear, and other forms of impression and pattern evidence.