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is likewise indebted to such works in the English language as Southerland on Bloodstains and the usual authorities on Medico-legal Jurisprudence; European Police Systems, Fosdick; Police Practice
Police Practice and Procedure, Cahalane; Science and the Criminal, Mitchell; A History of Penal Methods, Ives; Siberia and the Exile System and A Russian Comedy of Errors, Kennan; Questioned Documents, Osborn, and so forth.
The biographies and memoirs from which incidents, example cases and data have been assembled are also to be acknowledged and due credit given, Days of My Years, Macnaghten and The Lighter Side of My Official Life, Anderson, are the acknowledged sources of information on Scotland Yard and the cases and incidents coming to the attention of its Criminal Investigation Department. The memoirs on Monsieur Claude and those of Vidocq have been drawn upon on the French side for anecdote and incident and the diplomatic methods that have come to differentiate the Service de la Sûreté at Paris. In addition to those named here the author is indebted to innumerable authorities in nearly every direction. Indeed to acknowledge in detail all the sources of information going to the structure of this work, would be to clutter its pages with a mass of footnotes equal in volume to the text itself.
THERE is only one way to put down the present revolt of the underworld. The criminal must be apprehended and punished. Punishment swift and ruthless will wipe it out. But before the criminal can be punished, he must be determined. The courts are adequate but the machinery for the detection of the criminal agent in America is not. Those who try the criminal for his crime are carefully trained for that work and required to pass comprehensive examinations by the state, while the detection of the criminal is left to the desultory methods of the village constable. Our system is overloaded at one end and bare at the other; crude, unscientific and careless, is the continental comment
How can the court punish the criminal unless he is brought before it? There is the old recipe for cooking the hare. First catch your criminal! Every now and then some newspaper publishes a long list of unsolved criminal mysteries. It is a reflection on our intelligence. Of all the mysteries that confront the human mind, the criminal mystery is the very easiest to untangle. If we brought to their solution a moiety of the skill that we bring to the solution of the mysteries of nature, about us, the press would have no such list to print. The science of criminal investigation is practically unknown to us.
The burglar turpentines his shoes and the county sheriff wonders why his bloodhound sits still on the doorstep. The police con
tinue to fit a boot into a print and one finds an intelligent police department wondering vaguely how it could get an accurate copy of a letter without disturbing the sealed envelope that inclosed it. We seem unaware of the very existence of criminal investigation as a science. Its practical results fill us with wonder as the aborigine is filled with wonder at the white man's magic. The police brought Shauenheim a coat marked with a bloodstain. He looked at it a moment and said that the missing owner of the coat was dead. It proved to be true, but how could Shauenheim know that? The police showed an Austrian investigator a single footprint, he examined it with a glass, measured it with a steel tape and wrote out the following accurate description of the criminal: “Six feet one inch in height, slender, injured in right knee and a private in the German army.”
These are no marvels out of Poe's Dupin or his echoes, Lecoq and Holmes. From the aspect and measurement of a single footprint, the individual making it may be built up, as the scientist builds up the prehistoric animal from its fossil print. There is an accurate table for the purpose, very carefully verified.
We must consider this science if we are to get rid of crime. And for this purpose, the author has undertaken to assemble the material for this work. The data in it ought to be available to every police investigator in America, every chief of police of every city, every sheriff, every county official concerned with crime; the criminal lawyer and the officials of the criminal court. And the general reader who thrills at a detective story will find here detective stories more incredible than Poe, Gaborieau or Doyle have imagined