The Bertillon system was used before fingerprints were recognised as unique identifiers of criminal suspects and victims.
Alphonse Bertillon (April 24, 1853 – February 13, 1914) was a French police officer who created an identification system based on physical measurements. It was the first scientific system used by police to identify criminals. Before that time, suspects could only be identified based on unreliable eyewitness testimony.
“Every measurement slowly reveals the workings of the criminal. Careful observation and patience will reveal the truth.”
The name of this man was inked out before I acquired it. Poor thing – 18 years for burglary whilst in breach of probation on the forgery charge. Sounds like a very stiff sentence to me.