Latent Print Certification Requirements

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Requirements for IAI Latent Print Certification (Section XVIII Certification Program Operations Manual)

  1. Technical Training Required:

    Minimum of 80 Hours of Certification Board approved training in latent print matters, along with criteria listed on the application form. It should be noted that for Certification, hours will be used to calculate figures and credits used to calculate recertification figures.

  2. Basic Experience Required:

    1. Minimum of two (2) years full-time experience in the comparison and identification of latent print material and related matters.
    2. If less than full-time experience for the given time period is possessed, times must be accumulated to reach an acceptable minimum.

  3. Education Requirements:

    1. A Bachelor's Degree plus two (2) years full-time experience as prescribed by the LPCB.

      or
      1. An Associate Degree (or documentation of 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours of college credits) plus 3 years full-time experience as a latent print examiner equals the Bachelor's Degree requirement.

        or
      2. Four (4) years full-time experience as a latent print examiner required by Section C, 1 equals the Bachelor's Degree requirement.
    2. Educational requirements are not applicable to re-certification.

  4. Examinations:

    Certification shall be determined by testing. The certification test was developed and is maintained by the IAI Latent Print Certification Board. The applicants have 8 hours to complete parts 1, 2, and 3 of the test. All written tests are graded and recorded on a pass/fail basis as follows:

    1. Comparison of 15 latent prints with inked prints. The applicant must correctly identify a minimum of 12 of the latent prints without an erroneous identification.
    2. Pattern Interpretation of 35 Inked Impressions. The applicant must correctly interpret a minimum of 32 prints.
    3. True and false, multiple choice questions relative to the history of fingerprints, pattern interpretation and latent prints. Must successfully pass a written test with a minimum score 85%.

  5. Either oral board testing and/or presentation of a case for review to include latent print, inked print, charted enlargements and court qualifying questions and answers.

    1. If the applicant has already testified in a court of law as an expert, the applicant may submit a case for review, or may submit to the oral board testing.
    2. If the applicant for certification indicated on the original application that he/she had previously testified in a court of law to a latent print identification, the letter will specify a 90 day time limit by which the applicant must submit to the Division Certification Committee a case for review and documentation of prior testimony.
    3. The case for review shall include:
      1. A copy of the latent print
      2. A copy of the inked print
      3. Charted photographic enlargements of a and b, and include an explanation on how the conclusion is reached.
      4. Qualifying questions with answers to include the introduction and identification of the latent print.
    4. Documentation of prior testimony may be one of the following or other similar documentation:
      1. Letter from judge in whose court he/she testified.
      2. Letter from prosecuting attorney of case in which he/she testified.
      3. Letter from defense attorney in case.
      4. Court transcript of his/her testimony.
      5. Letter from his/her immediate superior who has personal knowledge of applicant's prior testimony.
    5. The Division Certification Committee will review the "Case for Review" and the documentation of prior testimony and if in order will forward same to the Secretary of the Latent Print Certification Board.
      1. If the applicant has not given testimony in a court of law as an expert, the applicant shall be required to undergo oral board testing as follows:
        1. If applicant on original application indicated that he/she had not previously furnished testimony, then a letter will be forwarded from the Secretary of the Latent Print Certification Board to the applicant, advising the applicant that he/she had achieved passing grades on the initial three portions of the test and is eligible for an oral board testing. The Chairman of the Division Certification Committee will be notified of the applicant passing the written test, no scores will be provided.
        2. The Chairperson of the Division Certification Committee will be requested to set a date within six months of passing of the written test for the oral board test and to advise the applicant and Secretary of the Latent Print Certification Board of the test date.
        3. The oral board test shall be administered by a minimum of two members of the Division Certification Committee and preferably by all three.
        4. The oral board should be approximately one hour in length and should include the following:
          1. A latent print and/or copy thereof.
          2. Inked print and/or copy thereof.
          3. Charted photographic enlargements depicting the identification.
          4. List of qualifying questions.
          5. Original notes, work sheets or report.
            (The above should be prepared and brought to the oral board test by the applicant and should be a hypothetical case as opposed to an actual case not yet adjudicated.)
    6. The Division Certification Committee should put the applicant through a mock trial, as would be experienced in a regular court of law with judge, prosecutor and defense counsel.
      1. The prosecutor should go through qualifying questions with the applicant responding, through the evidence testimony, and an explanation by the applicant of the charted enlargements depicting the latent print and inked print, and should then be cross examined by the defense.
      2. The cross examination should proceed as dictated by the direct testimony and should include questions on the background of fingerprint identification, methodology and criteria used in effecting an identification, as well as questions relative to his/her background and experience.
    7. A videotape recording shall be made of each applicant's mock trial proceeding and should include the date, name of the applicant and names of those participating in the oral board test.
      1. The videotape should be forwarded with comments of the Division Certification Committee as to the satisfactory or unsatisfactory participation by the applicant to the Secretary of the Latent Print Certification Board.
    8. Anyone failing the test for any reason other than an erroneous identification must wait 6 months from the test date to reapply.
    9. Anyone failing the test by making one or more erroneous identifications must wait 1 year before they can reapply to take the test.
    10. Those reapplying must submit a new application with all attachments plus whatever fee may be in effect at that time.
    11. An applicant failing any part of the test need only retake that part which he/she failed; unless an erroneous identification was made in which case the entire test must be retaken.

  6. Recertification:

    1. All applicants for recertification must accumulate 80 Continuing Education/Professional Development Credits since initial certification or recertification.
    2. The certification program calls for recertification every five years. This is necessary to determine the activities of the examiner over the previous five years and provide for updating of records.
    3. Applicants for recertification must prove continued competency by means of a comparison test. After approval of the Division Latent Print Certification Committee, the Secretary/designee of the Latent Print Certification Board will send the applicant a comparison test.
      1. Test will consist of five latent prints and five inked cards. The latent prints will all be identifiable with the inked prints provided.
      2. The applicant will have thirty days to complete the test and return it to the Secretary of the LPCB for grading. The applicant will provide a signed statement affirming that he/she took the test without assistance.
      3. All of the latent prints must be identified to pass the test.
      4. Failure to identify all of the latent prints will cause the suspension of their Certificate pending the applicant completing a new application for Certification and paying the applicable fee as stated on the IAI Website and taking the Certification test as stated. Failure to apply for testing prior to one year after the original expiration date of the Certificate will cause the suspension of the Certificate.
      5. An erroneous identification will cause the suspension of their Certificate for one year. After one year the applicant may apply for Certification and be tested as stated.

  7. Final Review:

    1. The Secretary of the Latent Print Certification Board will review the application and all related material including all test material, case for review, documentation of prior testimony, tape of mock trial and recommendations of the Division Certification Committee. If everything is acceptable, a certificate and certification card will be issued to the applicant.
    2. The entire Latent Print Certification Board will review the application and all related material in the event there is a technical concern about the application or test results.