By the way, fingerprinting is a science

The Travis Vader double-murder trial continues in Edmonton. Surely all readers will know Vader, a former meth addict...

The Travis Vader double-murder trial continues in Edmonton. Surely all readers will know Vader, a former meth addict, is charged with first degree murder in the disappearance of St. Albert seniors Lyle and Marie McCann.

It was stated at the trial’s start April 1 Vader’s fingerprints were found in a stolen vehicle, a small Hyundai SUV that belonged to the McCann’s and had been filmed in their possession hours before their disappearance July 3, 2010, and an eyewitness testified Apr. 28 that later he saw Vader in an SUV exactly matching the McCann’s. Experts testified Vader’s fingerprints were actually found on several surfaces in the McCann’s SUV including steering wheel, console and passenger seat and Vader’s fingerprints were also discovered on a beer can in the console; rather incriminating because the vehicle wasn’t his property and was last seen in the possession of the rightful owners, the McCann family.

Defense lawyer Brian Beresh scoffed at the expert testimony and questioned the fingerprint evidence. Reporters covering the trial stated Beresh claimed, in essence, that police and investigators made mistakes, fingerprinting isn’t accurate to begin with and fingerprinting is not an exact science.

Actually, fingerprinting is quite reliable and it’s been an exact science for about 100 years; it’s usually referred to as a “forensic science,” and sometimes as a “physiological science.” Fingerprints are unique to each individual, according to www.forensicesciencessimplified.org, and are identified through a multi-point process to make a connection to a specific individual more than guesswork. Fingerprints are the raised patterns found on human fingers and palms that also leave a sweat residue behind. The best fingerprints, that is, the prints that are clearest and most accurate, are those left on a smooth, non-porous surface. Such as a beer can, for example.

The fingerprint found on, for example, a beer can would be compared by a human expert to fingerprints already on file from a previous criminal record, or collected from a suspect at the time of their arrest.

You can’t blame Beresh for trying. The fact multiple Vader fingerprints were found in a stolen vehicle, the owners of which have been murdered…well, that’s tough to bounce back from. Any defense lawyer worth his salt will be doing his damndest to plant any doubt he/she can in the judge or juror’s minds about that single piece of evidence that someone charged with two murders would have a difficult time explaining.

Maybe Beresh should give up trying to create a new definition for “fingerprinting,” and instead meditate upon the definition of the word “manufactroversy:” The deliberate presentation of a uncontroversial matter as subject to dispute in order to further a particular ideological or political agenda.

Or cast doubt on evidence collected scientifically.

Pipestone Flyer here for the long haul

It’s understandable why people are talking about The Pipestone Flyer’s status. The building which has been home to the Pipestone Flyer since it was founded is currently for sale.

Many have asked the question after seeing the “FOR SALE” sign in the front of the building: are you moving? The answer is “NO,” the Pipestone Flyer family likes it right where we are in the heart of Millet.

With the Pipestone Flyer’s recent refocus on the Counties of Wetaskiwin and Leduc, we look forward to many years providing what we feel is the best local media to our rural readers.

 

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