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NCJ Number: 201554 Find in a Library
Title: Reliability of Bloodhounds in Criminal Investigations
Journal: Journal of Forensic Sciences  Volume:48  Issue:4  Dated:July 2003  Pages:811-816
Author(s): Lisa M. Harvey Ph.D.; Jeffrey W. Harvey B.Sc.
Date Published: July 2003
Page Count: 6
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the reliability of bloodhounds in distinguishing between different individual humans.
Abstract: Substantial evidence has suggested that dogs are capable of differentiating between individual humans by their scent. Police departments in such places as Belgium and the Netherlands use dogs to link criminal suspects to a crime scene. This experiment was conducted to scientifically validate the success of bloodhounds in matching human scent with the correct individual. Eight bloodhounds, three novice and five veteran, that were trained in human scent discrimination were placed on trails in an environment that mimicked a real-life scenario. A scent transfer unit was used to transfer each individual’s scent to a gauze pad, which was then sealed in a zip-loc bag and given to the handler. Results of the trailing indicated that veteran bloodhounds can reliably trail and identify an individual under various conditions. The error rate of the veteran bloodhound-handler team was found to be low. The authors conclude that the use of bloodhounds for suspect identification is a useful and reliable tool for law enforcement personnel. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Police dogs
Index Term(s): Forensic sciences; Rules of evidence; Suspect identification
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