Portuguese study highlights the importance of smell in solving crimes

A study undertaken at Portugal’s Aveiro University has proved that “olfactive memory” (literally, people’s ability to remember smells) plays a huge part in identifying criminals – often being critical. Study coordinator Laura Alho cited examples of sex crimes where victims remembered “the smell of car oil” or “meat”, and investigators were then able to narrow possibilities down to find the perpetrators, in the first instance a car mechanic, in the second a meat-packer.