Questioning a Courtroom Proof of the Uniqueness of Fingerprints

David H. Kaye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Forensic scientists or analysts concerned with "individualization" often presume that features such as fingerprint minutia are unique to each individual. In the United States, defendants in criminal cases have been demanding proof of such assumptions. In at least two cases, the government of the United States has successfully relied on an unpublished statistical study prepared specifically for litigation to demonstrate the uniqueness of fingerprints. This article suggests that the study is neither designed nor executed in a way that can show whether an individual's fingerprint impressions are unique.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)521-533
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Statistical Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty


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