• Fingerprints are more durable than you think, they are place in a bag to prevent your prints being on the gun hence compremising the evidence, secondly your prints will on to the bag not over any prints that may be on the weapon. Kinives are place in a plastic tube for obvious reasons, good question.
  • Not if the bag is always handled from the top where the slider is and not on the body of the bag which might smudge the prints! :)
  • I just conducted an experiment where I put my fingerprint on a hard plastic surface (the base of my monitor stand). I pressed on it with a plastic bag and it smudged and removed some parts of my print, so you're at least partially right about that. When I lightly pressed on the print without rubbing it, most of the print was left. When I pressed on it with more force and rubbed it, most of the print was smudged. Therefore, I think they should pick up the gun by inserting a plastic rod into the barrel, put it in the bag, and handle the bag by the top part only.
  • Actually, we use paper bags, not plastic, since paper allows the evidence to breathe. And certainly it's possible that some part of the print could be erased, but there's no other practical way to transport evidence from the scene to the lab. Good question.
  • Possibly somewhat, but far, far less than not putting it in the bag. Fingerprint are grease marks. Other fingers are other grease marks, and the two lots of grease will mingle and cross connect. A plastic bag is grease neutral; it may somewhat smear the grease in place, but it will not add its own identity to the fingerprints. You don't want to have to go our and exhaustively exonerate each detective in the case: you wan the gun only to have prints of those who handled it before the police arrived on the scene.
  • Ideally, paper bags are used, not plastic. They use plastic in the movies cause it looks cooler when they pull a little baggie out of their pocket. That almost as cool as when they taste the drugs.

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