Estimating a child’s age from an image using whole body proportions

Estimating a child’s age from an image using whole body proportions The use and distribution of child pornography is an increasing problem. Forensic anthropologists are often asked to estimate a child’s age from a photograph. Previous studies have attempted to estimate the age of children from photographs using ratios of the face. Here, we propose to include body measurement ratios into age estimates. A total of 1603 boys and 1833 girls aged 5–16 years were measured over a 10-year period. They are ‘Cape Coloured’ children from South Africa. Their age was regressed on ratios derived from anthropometric measurements of the head as well as the body. Multiple regression equations including four ratios for each sex (head height to shoulder and hip width, knee width, leg length and trunk length) have a standard error of 1.6–1.7 years. The error is of the same order as variation of differences between biological and chronological ages of the children. Thus, the error cannot be minimised any further as it is a direct reflection of a naturally occurring phenomenon. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Legal Medicine Springer Journals

Estimating a child’s age from an image using whole body proportions

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Publisher
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Copyright
Copyright © 2017 by Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Subject
Medicine & Public Health; Forensic Medicine; Medical Law; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0937-9827
eISSN
1437-1596
D.O.I.
10.1007/s00414-017-1561-2
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The use and distribution of child pornography is an increasing problem. Forensic anthropologists are often asked to estimate a child’s age from a photograph. Previous studies have attempted to estimate the age of children from photographs using ratios of the face. Here, we propose to include body measurement ratios into age estimates. A total of 1603 boys and 1833 girls aged 5–16 years were measured over a 10-year period. They are ‘Cape Coloured’ children from South Africa. Their age was regressed on ratios derived from anthropometric measurements of the head as well as the body. Multiple regression equations including four ratios for each sex (head height to shoulder and hip width, knee width, leg length and trunk length) have a standard error of 1.6–1.7 years. The error is of the same order as variation of differences between biological and chronological ages of the children. Thus, the error cannot be minimised any further as it is a direct reflection of a naturally occurring phenomenon.

Journal

International Journal of Legal MedicineSpringer Journals

Published: Feb 23, 2017

References

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