DIFFICULTIES IN THE DETECTION OF CRIME 3 along with his statement recorded in the vernacular. In cases of assault or other non-cognizable crime the injured person may go direct to the Civil Surgeon with the permission of the police-officer, if he thinks it necessary, or he may file an affidavit in the court of ,a Magistrate who will send him to the Civil Surgeon for medical examination and report. DIFFICULTIES IN THE DETECTION OF CRIME • The Civil Surgeon or the Medical Officer, who is always ready to assist the course of justice, finds it, at times, very difficult to arrive at correct conclusions in medico-legal cases for the "following reasons : — jjl) On hearing of an incident, the investigating police-officer, being already engaged in investigating another case or for some other reason, may not proceed at once to the place of occurrence ; consequently^valuahle time is^lost in obtaining a..qlue. tojhe .crime, _As an instance of the dilatory habits of the police-officers I may cite below one of many similar cases. A Hindu female, about 45 years old, of P. S. Mandiaon, Lucknow District, died in the King George's Hospital at 4 p.m. on the 20th September 1921. The Police were informed immediately of her death, and yet the necessary papers for post-mortem examination were handed over to me at 9 a.m. on the 22nd September 1921. The resiult of this unnecessary delay was that the cause of death could not be ascertained owing to the decomposition of the body. (2) Even if the police-officer reaches the place in time, he__may ~ not touch the dead body and scrutinize it for any marks of violence or identifi- catiwiDnraeeeuaat ^je^t^"preju3icgs or~some such scruples, but may depend on the j^liter ate villagers present at the inquest, who may have some motive in concealing the real T:acts. To illustrate these remarks I cite the following four cases:— 1. In February 1917, the body of a Mokemodan woman was taken out of a well in Akbar's palace at JTatehpur Sikri, and was sent to the Agra Medical School Mortuary for post-mortem examination with a police report that she was young, had thirty-two teeth, and her hair was dark; while at the autopsy it was found that the woman was more than 60 years old, had no teeth, all the alveoli had been absorbed, and the plait of the hair of the head that was lying loose owing to decomposition was mostly of a —silvery white colour. 2. In a case of double murder which occurred in Chowk, Lucknow, on or about the 10th August 1923, the age of one of the victims was put down to be 54 years by the police-officer holding the inquest but on inspection on the 12th August, the age was ascertained to be only 14 years and the age of the other victim who happened to be the mother of the girl (first victim) was forty years. 3. On the 26th August 1923, a body was removed from a well situated within the jurisdiction of Police-Station, Chowk, Lucknow. It was sent to the Medical College Mortuary for post-mortem examination with a report that it was the body of an unknown woman. At the autopsy it was found to be the body of a tall and well-built male. The body was in an advanced state of decomposition but the penis and scrotum were easily recognizable. 4. On the 10th July 1924, a headless body was found floating in Nahair (canal) Ghyasudin Haidar within the jurisdiction of Police-Station, Hazaratganj, Lucknow. The body was tajjen out and forwarded to me for examination with a report that the body was that of a woman. On examination I found that the body was that of a Hindu male, as the penis which was distended owing to decomposition was not circumcised. (3) The report supplied by the police-officer is often quite meagre, as, for want of powers of obsejry'atioj^^ .accnrac^^hjgm rushes through an inquest, anS'omffs to note many points, which would otherwise Eelp^fove the manner of death, or, for want of the most elementary knowledge of Medical Jurisprudence, though the subject is taught in police training schools, he mistakes the marks of post-mortem staining for- those of violence and1 describes injuries where there are none or omits to mention them when they are present, and thus unwittingly misleads the medical officer, especially if the body happens to be highly decomposed.