History Main / AbsenceOfEvidence

31st Dec '16 4:33:33 AM yisfidri
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* The maid in ''Literature/TheMovingFinger'' looks vainly through the window all afternoon for her boyfriend, but sees ''nobody'', not even a postman - meaning that the poison pen letter occasioning her employer's wife's "suicide" that day did not come through the mailbox.
24th Dec '16 11:23:35 AM Astaroth
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* In ''Literature/ArtemisFowl: The Opal Deception'', [[BigBad Opal Koboi]] has a specially constructed shuttle made entirely of "stealth ore" that is supposed to be almost impossible to detect with most conventional technology, in order to evade the authorities. Artemis gets around this by modifying the scanners on his own shuttle to detect unnatural absences of common elements... and very quickly finds what appears to be a shuttle-sized vacuum at the place where Opal is hiding.
20th Dec '16 9:18:03 PM Discar
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* ''Literature/TooLikeTheLightning'': Inverted. There is some vague, contradictory evidence that the Utopians were behind the theft of the [[SeriousBusiness Seven-Ten List]] in an attempt to discredit the Humanists and their car system in favor of the Utopians' own car system. When the world leaders ask Mycroft what he thinks, he points out that if the Utopians ''were'' involved, [[ThePerfectionist they would have done it so perfectly that no one would have suspected them for a second]].
6th Dec '16 4:56:48 PM Luigifan
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This is, in fact, one of the harder aspects of real police investigations. The lack of something is easy to miss. However you have to be careful. The lack of gunshot residue on a person's clothes for example '''does not''' mean that there was not a gun fired, it means that there is no gunpowder residue to find ("The absence of evidence is evidence of absence, not '''proof''' of absence"). Lack of such residue on the glove that an eyewitness saw the shooter use and then dump that is immediately picked up by the police might show that the event was staged, however (as the gloves would have residue and there is no way it might have been removed). Also, in RealLife, people firing a modern semiautomatic pistol often ''don't'' acquire any gunpowder residue on their hands; so while the ''presence'' of gunpowder residue may be evidence of guilt (weak in itself the residue could as easily have been picked up at a shooting range), its ''absence'' does not exclude a suspect.

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This is, in fact, one of the harder aspects of real police investigations. The lack of something is easy to miss. However However, you have to be careful. The lack of gunshot residue on a person's clothes clothes, for example example, '''does not''' mean that there was not a gun fired, it means that there is no gunpowder residue to find ("The absence of evidence is evidence of absence, not '''proof''' of absence"). Lack of such residue on the glove that an eyewitness saw the shooter use and then dump that is immediately picked up by the police might show that the event was staged, however (as the gloves would have residue and there is no way it might have been removed). Also, in RealLife, people firing a modern semiautomatic pistol often ''don't'' acquire any gunpowder residue on their hands; so while the ''presence'' of gunpowder residue may be evidence of guilt (weak in itself the residue could as easily have been picked up at a shooting range), its ''absence'' does not exclude a suspect.



** A man suspected to be the one who had been randomly attacking women with a mallet is found strangled in his own apartment...except Conan can't find any underwear, shoes, or toiletry there. He quickly realizes that [[spoiler: the apartment belongs to someone else, who removed those items to hide the fact that ''she'', a woman, lived there and was the true culprit]].
* In ''{{Anime/Monster}}'', Johan's crime scenes are "devoid of feeling" - the kills are executed as coldly and methodically as household chores. In one arc, this enables Runge to determine that a certain murder was [[CopycatCrime committed by a copy-cat]] and not Johan - [[spoiler:Blood spatter clearly shows a man had been [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-40?id=7370 slouched in front of a mirror]], but his body is found several feet away because the killer hesitated upon [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-41?id=7374 seeing himself in said mirror]]. Johan would have killed the man without a second thought, but the real killer - the man's nephew - was shocked to see himself in the process of killing]].

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** A man suspected to be the one who had been randomly attacking women with a mallet is found strangled in his own apartment...except Conan can't find any underwear, shoes, or toiletry there. He quickly realizes that [[spoiler: the [[spoiler:the apartment belongs to someone else, who removed those items to hide the fact that ''she'', a woman, lived there and was the true culprit]].
* In ''{{Anime/Monster}}'', Johan's crime scenes are "devoid of feeling" - -- the kills are executed as coldly and methodically as household chores. In one arc, this enables Runge to determine that a certain murder was [[CopycatCrime committed by a copy-cat]] and not Johan - [[spoiler:Blood -- [[spoiler:blood spatter clearly shows a man had been [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-40?id=7370 slouched in front of a mirror]], but his body is found several feet away because the killer hesitated upon [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-41?id=7374 seeing himself in said mirror]]. Johan would have killed the man without a second thought, but the real killer - -- the man's nephew - -- was shocked to see himself in the process of killing]].



* In ''{{Literature/Aquarium}}'', a superior asks Suvorov whether he knows what a certain section of the intelligence department is dealing with. Turns out he does - since he never received any data from them, the obvious conclusion is that these are units which only operate during the war. Combined with the available data about the section's officers, who are all very tall, that means these are recon and sabotage units. Well, the proper name for them is Spetsnaz, but of course that cannot be obtained by deduction.

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* In ''{{Literature/Aquarium}}'', a superior asks Suvorov whether he knows what a certain section of the intelligence department is dealing with. Turns out he does - -- since he never received any data from them, the obvious conclusion is that these are units which only operate during the war. Combined with the available data about the section's officers, who are all very tall, that means these are recon and sabotage units. Well, the proper name for them is Spetsnaz, but of course that cannot be obtained by deduction.



** Monk's very first case was an example of this; a hooker had [=OD'd=] on Promazine - a tranquilizer for ''horses'', pills the size of an adult's ''eyeballs''. Monk's partner at the time, Stottlemeyer, said suicide. Every cop on the scene said suicide. ''Medical examiner'' said suicide. Monk walks in, says murder. "Where's the water?" The room had no water! Simple. Eight people in the room, but nobody saw that.

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** Monk's very first case was an example of this; a hooker had [=OD'd=] on Promazine - -- a tranquilizer for ''horses'', pills the size of an adult's ''eyeballs''. Monk's partner at the time, Stottlemeyer, said suicide. Every cop on the scene said suicide. ''Medical examiner'' said suicide. Monk walks in, says murder. "Where's the water?" The room had no water! Simple. Eight people in the room, but nobody saw that.



** "The Sontaran Stratagem" - UNIT and the Doctor are investigating ATMOS, a factory they believe is a front for alien activity. While Martha examines the workers and the Doctor sonics the ATMOS, Donna finds something suspicious: an empty file folder for sick days. As Martha manages to determine while doing medical checkups on the ATMOS factory workers, this is because all of them have been hypnotized by the Sontarans (as evidenced by one who says in a never-changing pitch that he works 24 hours a day, and has an abnormally high pulse rate).

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** "The Sontaran Stratagem" - Stratagem": UNIT and the Doctor are investigating ATMOS, a factory they believe is a front for alien activity. While Martha examines the workers and the Doctor sonics the ATMOS, Donna finds something suspicious: an empty file folder for sick days. As Martha manages to determine while doing medical checkups on the ATMOS factory workers, this is because all of them have been hypnotized by the Sontarans (as evidenced by one who says in a never-changing pitch that he works 24 hours a day, and has an abnormally high pulse rate).



*** In case 5, the absence of blood on the hilt of a knife that was found inside a victim suggests that [[spoiler: the hilt was switched, as there were several knives with hilts and blades that fit each other]].

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*** In case 5, the absence of blood on the hilt of a knife that was found inside a victim suggests that [[spoiler: the [[spoiler:the hilt was switched, as there were several knives with hilts and blades that fit each other]].



* This is how [[spoiler: Teruteru]] is exposed as a murderer in ''VisualNovel/SuperDanganRonpa2''. After [[spoiler: the blackout which was when Byakuya]] was murdered, Mikan fell over and landed in a... [[InnocentFanserviceGirl compromising]] position. [[spoiler: Teruteru]], [[LovableSexManiac of all people]], failed to comment on this... [[spoiler: which proved he wasn't in the dining hall as he had pretended but under it, from where he stabbed Byakuya]].

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* This is how [[spoiler: Teruteru]] [[spoiler:Teruteru]] is exposed as a murderer in ''VisualNovel/SuperDanganRonpa2''. After [[spoiler: the blackout [[spoiler:the blackout, which was when Byakuya]] was murdered, Mikan fell over and landed in a... [[InnocentFanserviceGirl compromising]] position. [[spoiler: Teruteru]], [[spoiler:Teruteru]], [[LovableSexManiac of all people]], failed to comment on this... [[spoiler: which [[spoiler:which proved he wasn't in the dining hall as he had pretended but under it, from where he stabbed Byakuya]].
16th Nov '16 5:55:41 AM Tron80
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* This was, oddly enough, used to discover ComicBook/{{Superman}}'s secret identity back in the Silver Age of comics. Superman has since started filling his bathroom with all the things needed for daily life, and putting medicines in his locker.

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* This was, oddly enough, used to discover ComicBook/{{Superman}}'s Franchise/{{Superman}}'s secret identity back in the Silver Age of comics. Superman has since started filling his bathroom with all the things needed for daily life, and putting medicines in his locker.
2nd Nov '16 7:12:00 AM ChaoticNovelist
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** Another, perhaps less convincing, story has Griswold show that a suspect is only pretending to be a writer because [[WriteWhatYouKnow there is no]] ''[[MostWritersAreWriters wastepaper basket]]'' in his apartment, which would have fairly standard for a writer at the time.

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** Another, perhaps less convincing, Another story has Griswold show that a suspect is only pretending to be a writer because [[WriteWhatYouKnow there is no]] ''[[MostWritersAreWriters wastepaper basket]]'' in his apartment, which would have fairly standard for a writer at the time.
31st Oct '16 8:08:07 AM Kalaong
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* In ''{{Anime/Monster}}'', Johan's crime scenes are devoid of feeling. In one arc, this enables Runge to determine that a certain murder was [[CopycatCrime committed by a copy-cat]] and not Johan.

to:

* In ''{{Anime/Monster}}'', Johan's crime scenes are devoid "devoid of feeling. feeling" - the kills are executed as coldly and methodically as household chores. In one arc, this enables Runge to determine that a certain murder was [[CopycatCrime committed by a copy-cat]] and not Johan.Johan - [[spoiler:Blood spatter clearly shows a man had been [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-40?id=7370 slouched in front of a mirror]], but his body is found several feet away because the killer hesitated upon [[http://kissmanga.com/Manga/Monster/Monster-41?id=7374 seeing himself in said mirror]]. Johan would have killed the man without a second thought, but the real killer - the man's nephew - was shocked to see himself in the process of killing]].
25th Oct '16 10:09:11 AM Gosicrystal
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** For example, Turnabout Succession Case 4:
--->'''Phoenix:''' So... were any fingerprints found on the gun?\\
'''Klavier:''' ...Unfortunately, no. Of course, the defendant is known for wearing gloves. We might say that a lack of fingerprints is, in fact, a "fingerprint" of its own.
** Later in the same case, the victim's insulin syringe was completely empty, adding weight to Phoenix's claim that the killer put something else in it.
** In the extra case from the [[UpdatedRerelease Nintendo DS remake]] of the first game, ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney'' (MAJOR spoiler): [[spoiler: Damon Gant has just "proven" Ema Skye pushed the victim to his death using a fingerprint-laden piece of cloth he personally cut from the victim's vest. However, Phoenix notes that while the victim died of a pierced lung and was coughing up blood on himself for a while before death, the piece of cloth has NO blood on it. Since this proves the cloth was cut BEFORE the victim was killed, Gant is [[OhCrap a bit unnerved]]]].
** In the first case of ''VisualNovel/AceAttorneyInvestigationsMilesEdgeworth'', the killer claimed to have lost his keys and asked a security guard to open the door to "his" office for him. The absence of the security guard's prints on his door suggests that [[spoiler:he tricked her into opening a different door that she thought was his]].
** In a later case from ''Investigations'', the absence of blood on the hilt of a knife that was found inside a victim suggests that [[spoiler: the hilt was switched, as there were several knives with hilts and blades that fit each other.]]
** In the third game's second case, the emergency buzzer at the crime scene, which was pressed at the time of the murder, had no traces of prints on it. The is used by Phoenix to prove the victim didn't press it, but the real killer did, resulting in the trope name almost being mentioned.
---> '''Judge:''' The emergency buzzer? Is there some kind of clue on it?\\
'''Phoenix:''' Absolutely not.\\
'''Godot:''' Ha! You could at least put some effort into what you say, Trite.\\
'''Phoenix:''' In this case, the absence of a clue is, itself, the clue!
** In connection to above, later on, the absence of prints is used by Luke Atmey [[spoiler:, who incidentally is the real killer,]] to show that it was Ron who pressed the buzzer, seeing as how Ron was in his Mask☆[=DeMasque=] outfit, which meant he was wearing gloves.[[spoiler:This statement by Luke would come back to royally bite him in the butt, as there's no way Luke should have known Ron was wearing the outfit; that bit of evidence had only been revealed in the earlier part of that day's trial (and not mentioned since), and Luke had been in a completely different courtroom at the time.]]

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** For example, Turnabout Succession Case 4:
--->'''Phoenix:''' So... were
''VisualNovel/ApolloJusticeAceAttorney'':
*** In the flashback trial, Klavier says that, because there weren't
any fingerprints found on the gun?\\
'''Klavier:''' ...Unfortunately, no. Of course,
gun, the defendant is had to be the killer, because he's known for wearing gloves. We might say Anyone with common sense, however, would know that a lack of fingerprints is, this is faulty logic, because it could be anyone with gloves (and, in fact, a "fingerprint" of its own.
** Later
Valant also wore them in the same case, night of the crime).
*** The
victim's insulin syringe was in the flashback case is completely empty, adding weight to Phoenix's claim that the killer cleaned it and put something else in it.
** In the extra case from the [[UpdatedRerelease Nintendo DS remake]] of the first game, ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney'' (MAJOR spoiler): [[spoiler: Damon [[spoiler:Damon Gant has just "proven" Ema Skye pushed the victim to his death using a fingerprint-laden piece of cloth he personally cut from the victim's vest. However, Phoenix notes that while the victim died of a pierced lung and was coughing up blood on himself for a while before death, the piece of cloth has NO blood on it. Since this proves the cloth was cut BEFORE the victim was killed, Gant is [[OhCrap a bit unnerved]]]].
** ''VisualNovel/AceAttorneyInvestigationsMilesEdgeworth'':
***
In the first case of ''VisualNovel/AceAttorneyInvestigationsMilesEdgeworth'', case, the killer claimed to have lost his keys and asked a security guard to open the door to "his" office for him. The absence of the security guard's prints on his door suggests that [[spoiler:he tricked her into opening a different door that she thought was his]].
** *** In a later case from ''Investigations'', 5, the absence of blood on the hilt of a knife that was found inside a victim suggests that [[spoiler: the hilt was switched, as there were several knives with hilts and blades that fit each other.]]
other]].
** In the third game's second case, the emergency buzzer at the crime scene, which was pressed at the time of the murder, had no traces of prints on it. The This is used by Phoenix to prove the victim didn't press it, but the real killer did, resulting in the trope name almost being mentioned.
---> '''Judge:''' The emergency buzzer? Is there some kind of clue on it?\\
'''Phoenix:''' Absolutely not.\\
'''Godot:''' Ha! You could at least put some effort into what you say, Trite.\\
'''Phoenix:''' In this case, the absence of a clue is, itself, the clue!
**
mentioned.\\\
In connection to the above, later on, the absence of prints is used by Luke Atmey [[spoiler:, who incidentally is the real killer,]] to show that it was Ron who pressed the buzzer, seeing as how Ron was in his Mask☆[=DeMasque=] outfit, which meant he was wearing gloves.gloves. [[spoiler:This statement by Luke would come back to royally bite him in the butt, as there's no way Luke should have known Ron was wearing the outfit; that bit of evidence had only been revealed in the earlier part of that day's trial (and not mentioned since), and Luke had been in a completely different courtroom at the time.]]



** ''[[VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneySpiritOfJustice Spirit of Justice]]'':
*** Played with in "The Magical Turnabout". [[spoiler:Trucy's fingerprints were found in an X-shaped tape understage [[note]]The tape's purpose was guiding the victim to the coffin. He ended up in the wrong coffin because the tape had been moved[[/note]], so the prosecution claims she touched it during the murder to have the victim in the stage, not backstage... but she was wearing gloves at the time, meaning she left the prints sometime before the murder]]. In a nutshell -- something that shouldn't be there, was, which proves nothing in this case.
*** Double subverted in "Turnabout Time Traveler". At one point, you have to prove that [[spoiler:Sorin didn't enter the hold in the night of the crime, and you do that by presenting the hold keycard entry. Because his name is not in the list, he didn't go in. Then Sorin says that he came in using Nichody's keycard. And ''then'', Nichody himself claims that Sorin didn't go to the hold after all, which is the truth]].



* In ''VisualNovel/NineHoursNinePersonsNineDoors'', [[spoiler: the Ninth Man's missing bracelet. It leads Junpei to believe that it was used in Snake's murder, and that killer [[LoopholeAbuse could open the door with Snake alone, as the bracelet would replace the third person]].]]

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* In ''VisualNovel/NineHoursNinePersonsNineDoors'', [[spoiler: the [[spoiler:the Ninth Man's missing bracelet. It leads Junpei to believe that it was used in Snake's murder, and that killer [[LoopholeAbuse could open the door with Snake alone, as the bracelet would replace the third person]].]]
22nd Oct '16 2:31:14 PM Morgenthaler
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** This was, oddly enough, used to discover Superman's secret identity back in the Silver Age of comics. Superman has since started filling his bathroom with all the things needed for daily life, and putting medicines in his locker.

to:

** * This was, oddly enough, used to discover Superman's ComicBook/{{Superman}}'s secret identity back in the Silver Age of comics. Superman has since started filling his bathroom with all the things needed for daily life, and putting medicines in his locker.
11th Oct '16 1:06:11 PM dotchan
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* In an episode of ''Manga/DetectiveConan'', the daughter of a wealthy businessman has been kidnapped and Conan figures out who the kidnapper is when he remembers that no one reported hearing the sounds of dogs barking the previous night. (For clarification, the [[TheButlerDidIt butler]] who claimed to have witnessed the kidnapping said that the kidnapper climbed down a tree, but the businessman's dogs routinely barked at anyone who got near the tree.)

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* In an episode of ''Manga/DetectiveConan'', the Often used in ''Manga/DetectiveConan'':
** The
daughter of a wealthy businessman has been kidnapped and Conan figures out who the kidnapper is when he remembers that no one reported hearing the sounds of dogs barking the previous night. (For clarification, the [[TheButlerDidIt butler]] who claimed to have witnessed the kidnapping said that the kidnapper climbed down a tree, but the businessman's dogs routinely barked at anyone who got near the tree.))
** A man suspected to be the one who had been randomly attacking women with a mallet is found strangled in his own apartment...except Conan can't find any underwear, shoes, or toiletry there. He quickly realizes that [[spoiler: the apartment belongs to someone else, who removed those items to hide the fact that ''she'', a woman, lived there and was the true culprit]].
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.AbsenceOfEvidence