criminology

Madame Marie Lafarge – The first “Victim” of the Marsh Test

Madame Marie Lafarge – The first “Victim” of the Marsh Test

On September 19, 1840, Marie-Fortunée Fafarge was convicted of murdering her husband by arsenic poisoning. Her case has become notable because she was the first person convicted largely on direct forensic toxicological evidence. Marie Lafarge Marie Lafarge grew up with her maternal aunt and was sent to only the best schools throughout her youth. Wealth has always been an important issue of her life. Coming from a rather poor family, she mainly…
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Cesare Lombroso – The Father of Criminology

Cesare Lombroso – The Father of Criminology

On November 6, 1835, Italian criminologist and physician Cesare Lombroso was born. Lombroso was the founder of the Italian School of Positivist Criminology, and is often referred to as the father of criminology. He rejected the established classical school, which held that crime was a characteristic trait of human nature. Instead, using concepts drawn from physiognomy, degeneration theory, psychiatry and Social Darwinism, Lombroso‘s theory of anthropological criminology essentially stated that criminality was…
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Henry Faulds and the Forensic Use of Fingerprints

Henry Faulds and the Forensic Use of Fingerprints

On June 1, 1843, Scottish physician and missionary Henry Faulds was born. Faulds became a missionary in Japan, where he worked as a surgeon superintendent at a Tokyo hospital, taught at the local univeristy, and founded the Tokyo Institute for the Blind. He is probably best known for his study of fingerprints, where he became convinced that each individual had a unique pattern. Historic Use of Fingerprints It is believed that fingerprints…
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Alphonse Bertillon’s Anthropometric Identification System

Alphonse Bertillon’s Anthropometric Identification System

On April 23,1853, French police officer and biometrics researcher Alphonse Bertillon was born. Bertillon was the first who applied the anthropological technique of anthropometry to law enforcement creating an identification system based on physical measurements. Anthropometry was the first scientific system used by police to identify criminals. Before that time, criminals could only be identified by name or photograph. The method was eventually supplanted by fingerprinting. Alphonse Bertillon was born into a…
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