For many years, handwriting examination and analysis is the most important aspect of questioned document laboratory casework. It is Subjective.
Each person writes differently, even within the same writer, handwriting differs, and it is the expert’s subjective opinion based on his knowledge that two writings were or were not created by the same individual.
Document examiners conduct questioned document analysis, which involves handwriting examination and study of various other aspects of the questioned document.
Also Read: The principles and the identification features of a handwriting
Following are the key points for the Handwriting Examination:
Various Writing Methodologies
The art, skill, or style of handwriting is commonly known as Penmanship. there are three different types of handwriting styles normally used by writer, which are: Printing, pre-cursive, and cursive handwriting.
1) Cursive: Cursive handwriting is a type of writing in which the letters are joined in order to write more quickly. It’s the polar opposite of block letters, in which the pen raises every letter. It’s also known as joined-up handwriting or script handwriting. Incidentally, using script handwriting to refer to cursive is less frequent.
2) Pre-cursive: Pre-cursive handwriting is the transition between printing (unjoined) letters to cursive handwriting, which involves uniting all letters.
3) Print: Print is a lettering style in which the letters appear to be separated. Block letters, print script, and manuscript are all terms used to describe it. These styles are often used in official forms.
Appearance of a Document
Appearance of a Document to which the Examiner Should Pay Attention:
▪ Fold and creases – lines indicating that the document was folded or stored in a small container.
▪ Impression – such as a paper clip, stamp pads, and other similar items
▪Cancellation stamps – these stamps indicate that a portion of the documents has been cancelled.
▪ Erasures – Use of erasure can reduce the thinckness of paper and can also disturb the surface smoothness.
▪ Surface – to detect any chemical erasures
▪ Blots and Smears – forgers use blots to conceal a mark, while smears are caused by contact with other documents.
▪ Dimension of the document – trimming of the original document can be used to remove an important part of the document.
▪ Perforations – minor tearing irregularities
▪ Adhesive stamps
▪ Holes and tears were utilised to conceal purposeful forgeries.
▪ Wire marks and watermarks – in-paper markings
▪Handwriting- Handwriting is the outcome of a complex series of actions, consisting of a combination of observable mental and physical habits established through years of laborious effort.
Any characteristic or mark that distinguishes from others
1. Class Characteristics – a set of characteristics shared by a group of people.
2. Individual Characteristics – highly personal or unusual, and not likely to occur in other situations
Points for Comparative Examination of Handwriting
✔ Slant/Slope — the angle of inclination of the letter axis in relation to the baseline.
✔ Handwriting size varies based on the conditions, such as camouflage, change in pace, and exhaustion.
✔ Writing ratios and proportions — the relationship between tall and short letters.
✔ Letters Size – Letters should be about the same width as each other in terms of relative size.
✔ Terminal Spurs – Short horizontal terminal strokes, usually present on little letters, are known as terminal spurs.
✔ Connecting strokes – A stroke that joins two strokes or letters together Garlanded – rounded at the base, either round or rectangular Arcaded – in the shape of arches, rounded at the top.
✔ Hiatus — A space between strokes produced by writing speed or a damaged writing device.
✔ Pen lift – A gap in the lettering that appears to be evident.
✔ Hesitation – An uneven thickening of the ink line that occurs when writing slows or stops while the writer assesses the situation.
✔ Letter spacing – The distance between letters.
✔ Shading – the broadening of the ink lines caused by the breaking of the pen nib, which is regulated by pen pressure variation.
✔ Line quality – a visible record of the actions and style of holding the writing tool in the written strokes.
✔ Rhythm – a continuous flow of motion that is recorded as a harmonic repetition of stress or impulse motion.
✔ Tremor – writing that has erratic, wobbly strokes or deviates from a consistent stroke pattern.
✔ Diacritics – components used to finish the letters.
✔ Eye/ eyelet — inside the letter, a minute or little loop or curve is produced.
✔ Hook – a little curve or angle that commonly appears at the end of the terminal stroke.
✔ Loop – an oblong curve that can be seen on either the top or bottom half of a letter.
✔ Retrace – any portion of a stroke that is superimposed over the initial stroke; any stroke that travels back over the same writing stroke.
✔ Staff/stem – any main long downward stroke of a letter, such as the long downward stroke of the letters b and g.
✔ Buckle/buckle knot – a flourish consisting of a loop that is added to the letters, like in the little letters k and f.
✔ Terminal Stroke – The final piece of a letter is the terminal stroke.
✔ Patching/Retouching – going back over a defective portion of a writing stroke.