East Midlands police forces to digitise fingerprint records

The aim is to create a paperless system

Three East Midlands police forces are set to become the first in England and Wales to have all their paper fingerprint records entirely digitised.

Derbyshire, Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire police are handing more than 500,000 records, dating back to 1999, to a private software firm.

The East Midlands Special Operations Unit (EMSOU) said the move would help trace offenders more quickly.

It added that it will save money on staffing and storage costs.

Ian Gledhill, head of Forensic services at EMSOU, said: "We now have the imaging and print quality to satisfy the requirements of the courts, making the need to hold paper records obsolete.

"This process will effectively make our bureau paperless.

Space shortage

"Digitisation enables us to make identifications within minutes of a print being taken from a crime scene, increasing the prospect of tracing the offender."

EMSOU said the move to digitise records is due to a shortage on space for holding paper records.

However, EMSOU claimed storage space is under pressure after the three forces amalgamated their files last year.

It added there was also a "significant annual cost to store them" and staffing costs will also be reduced.

Prior to 1999, all fingerprint records were sent to Scotland Yard for storage.

Northgate Public Services, a private company which also collects 50% of the UK's council tax, will be carrying out the work for the forces which should only take a few weeks to complete.

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More England stories

RSS

Features

  • Nigel Farage (left) and Douglas CarswellWho's next?

    The Tory MPs being tipped to follow Carswell to UKIP


  • A painting of the White House on fire by Tom FreemanFinders keepers

    The odd objects looted by the British from Washington in 1814


  • President Barack Obama pauses during a press conference on 28 August.'No strategy'

    Obama's gaffe on Islamic State reveals political truth


  • Chris and Regina Catrambone with their daughter Maria LuisaSOS

    The millionaires who rescue people at sea


  • Plane7 days quiz

    What unusual offence got a Frenchman thrown off a plane?


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.