Criminal Justice Update
Media > Newsletters > On the Job: Criminal Justice Update > Fall 2017 > Agencies urged to resubmit pre-2013 latent prints

On the Job RSS feeds

Criminal Justice Update

Agencies urged to resubmit pre-2013 latent prints

Law enforcement agencies throughout the state are being encouraged to resubmit latent fingerprints to the Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) from unsolved, pre-2013 cases in hopes that new technology might provide fresh leads.

BCI serves as the point of contact in Ohio for the FBI, which has upgraded its fingerprint system to Next Generation Identification (NGI). The database includes prints from federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.

Incoming criminal and civil submissions are compared to prints in the FBI’s unsolved latent file repositories, generating new investigative leads in unsolved cases. Old prints previously enrolled in the FBI’s legacy Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS) must be re-enrolled in the new NGI system in order to be searched for a match to prints from recent arrests.

The NGI system can more precisely compare the characteristics of the ridges on latent prints with those on prints collected during an arrest, making matches more likely.

Karen Huey, assistant superintendent at BCI, said to think of it as a better microscope.

“It’s as if you were to compare a microscope you used in 8th grade with a high-tech one — you’ll find the NGI system provides a better examination of the fingerprint,” she said. “Also, a resubmitted print might match to something the FBI has on file.”

Meanwhile, BCI is in contract for its own updated fingerprint system. The ABIS (Automated Biometric Identification System) will replace the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) in the processing and storing of fingerprints and palm prints.

The ABIS system will also use an algorithm to search the Computerized Criminal History (CCH) system to link criminal histories and fingerprints.

Fingerprints and palm prints that are currently enrolled in BCI’s Unsolved Latent Print Database will automatically be transferred to the new ABIS system.

For information on submitting cold case fingerprints, call 855-BCI-OHIO (855-224-6446).