Analysts in the Latent Prints Section examine fingerprints "after the fact." Each finger and thumb is unique to an individual and no two prints have ever been found to be exactly the same from two different people. Also, palm and footprints are also unique to each individual. There are approximately 75 to 200 characteristics on a finger or thumb. The analysts use a variety of techniques --such as carbon powder dusting, super-glue and ninhydrin spray techniques, amido-black print visualization, and argon laser identification --to identify and match prints. The DPS Crime Labs that currently provide Latent Print Processing and/or Comparison include: Austin, Weslaco, Garland, and Corpus Christi.
The latent AFIS operations augment the capabilities of the Latent Prints Section.