Facial composite systems: Production of an identifiable face

Frowd, Charlie D. orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-5082-1259 (2017) Facial composite systems: Production of an identifiable face. In: Face Processing: Systems, Disorders and Cultural Differences. Nova Science Publishers.

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In a criminal investigation, a facial composite is constructed by an eyewitness of a person seen to commit a crime. Composites are used by law enforcement as an investigative tool, to generate new lines of enquiry and help to solve crime. Sketch artists have been working with eyewitnesses to create composites by hand for many years but, in the last fifty years or so, various systems have emerged which have allowed practitioners with less artistic skill to produce facial images. This chapter provides an overview of the systems available to law enforcement and the methods that have been developed to improve their effectiveness. It is evident that considerable research has been conducted, both past and present, and for different stages in the process, the result of which is the production of an identifiable face. The chapter also looks to the future and considers emerging techniques that have the potential to further our understanding of the field and to promote an even more effective composite.

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