Fingerprint Concealment Technique?

Posted by StreetHawk StreetHawk
My department has encountered several vehicle burglaries where it appears that the suspect(s) have sprayed a powder type aerosol to the surfaces that they planned to touch (door handles, glove box handle, area surrounding the stereo, ect).  Obviously, the powder fills the ridges on their fingertips - preventing any ridge detail in the print.  One would think that gloves would be easier to use to conceal their prints, but would be quite obvious if the suspect(s) were stopped on foot in the area while possessing gloves in a warm climate.
Is this a new trend?  Anybody heard of this method?

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Re: Fingerprint Concealment Technique?

Never heard of that before. I live in the south and have to deal with really bad pollen in the spring. The pollen is so fine and abundant that it actually looks like a green powder blanketing our cars and streets. I have noticed sometimes, this pollen actually works like fingerprint powder and makes prints very visible, not quite good enough for an ID, but close. So I am surprised that a lot of powder would be used to try to obscure prints.

Have you tried "blowing away the excess" powder? Has a lab been able to identify the powder? Maybe its unique/special enough that it has be ordered.