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Forensic Science Committee. Position Paper on Canine Use. Fire and Arson Investigator. September, 1994.

Abstract: This article is from the International Association of Arson Investigators and it is a summary of their position on the use of canines. The IAAI Forensic Science Committee endorses the use of accelerant detection canines as a valuable tool for fire investigators. The committee verifies that some testing indicates a canine is more sensitive to ignitable liquids than a laboratory. However, the committee upholds that a canine is not infallible and samples of canine alerts should be sent to the lab. The committee also takes the position that the scope of a canine's sensitivity is not fully understood and a canine's findings that are unconfirmed by laboratory testing should be considered inconclusive. The committee affirms that allowing unconfirmed alerts to be used as evidence is a misuse of the canine as a tool. A canine's alert to the presence of an ignitable liquid should not serve as the basis for an arson determination and should only be used as one factor in a fire investigation.

For more information, contact:
International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI)
300 Broadway Suite 100
St. Louis, MO 63102-2808
Phone: 314-621-1966

 
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