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Senior Lecturer in Criminology, University of Leicester

Dr John W. Bond OBE joined the Department of Criminology from the Department of Chemistry, where he has worked for the past three years since retiring from Northamptonshire Police in 2011.

John worked for Northamptonshire Police for nearly 20 years as Head of Forensic Services and, during that time, crime scene managed many high profile investigations including the investigation of the multiple murderer Phillip Austin, who murdered his entire family in 2000.

John also invented a novel method of recovering fingerprints from spent brass shell casings, which has been used to provide prosecution evidence in murder trials across the US. Whilst at Leicester, John has continued to invent new ways of recovering fingerprints from ‘difficult’ surfaces and some of these are now in commercial production, used by law enforcement agencies worldwide, and generate an income for the university. These inventions have been acknowledged with innovation awards from Time Magazine and the BBC Focus Magazine and, in 2011, John was awarded and OBE for services to forensic science.

He has a long standing association with the Department of Criminology and, for several years, has worked in close collaboration with academics in the department, notably Dr Lisa Smith and Tammy Ayres. The most recent of these collaborations have included the ‘Blazing car murder’ from 1930, legal high substance abuse and the successful FP7 bid for EU funding for ten Ph.D. studentships at the university.

Research Interests

Fingerprint Enhancement on Difficult Surfaces
Fingerprint Enhancement on Thermal Paper
Detecting Crime with Forensic Science
Novel Psychoactive Substances

Awards Received

Steering Group Member, Technology Strategy Board, 2013
Visiting Fellowship, University of Reading, 2012
Officer of the Order of the British Empire for Services to Forensic Science, 2011
Expert Scientist, Science Museum London, 2009
Advisory Board Member, California State University, 2009
BBC Focus Magazine Award - Invention Most Likely to Change the World, 2009
Time Magazine Award - Top 50 Inventions of the Year, 2008
Additional Information

Consolite Forensics
International Collaborations

I also have international collaborations in all of the research interests below with :

San Jose State University
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Agency, San Francisco
Santa Clara County Crime Laboratory
John regularly supervises intern students, particularly from the US, to work on projects in any of the research interests below. Click here for a recent example of this research.


  • –present
    Senior Lecturer in Criminology, University of Leicester