The clerk took some measurements, went to the file, and produced this record, bearing the name William West:
Amazed, the prisoner said, “That’s my picture, but I don’t know where you got it, for I know I have never been here before.”
Incredibly, this was true. A different William West had been serving a life sentence at Leavenworth since 1901, and the new prisoner had the same name, face, and measurements.
The case became a strong argument in favor of the new science of fingerprinting.