Title:
Shoe Imaging Stand
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A shoe imaging stand and processes for using the same are disclosed, according to various embodiments. In one illustrative embodiment, a shoe imaging stand includes a base, one or more side panels, and a center panel, any of which may include measurement markings along edges thereof. The side panels may be adjustably positionable, enabling one or more shoes to be disposed in close proximity to one or more edges with measurement markings, for purposes of imaging the shoes and their tread.



Inventors:
Gorr, Chris (Long Prairie, MN, US)
Application Number:
11/944789
Publication Date:
05/29/2008
Filing Date:
11/26/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
33/1BB, 33/3R
International Classes:
A43D1/08
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
GUADALUPE, YARITZA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WESTMAN CHAMPLIN & KOEHLER, P.A. (Minneapolis, MN, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. An shoe imaging stand, comprising: a base; a center panel, connected to the base; a first side panel, disposed on the base and configured to have an adjustable position relative to the base; wherein at least one of the base, the center panel, or the side panel comprises measurement markings proximate to an edge thereof.

2. The shoe imaging stand of claim 1, further comprising a second side panel, disposed on the base in a region opposite the center panel from the first side panel, and configured to have an adjustable position relative to the base, wherein at least one of the base, the center panel, the first side panel, or the second side panel comprises measurement markings depicted proximate to an edge thereof.

3. The shoe imaging stand of claim 2, wherein the base, the center panel, the first side panel, and the second side panel each comprise measurement markings disposed proximate to an edge thereof.

4. The shoe imaging stand of claim 1, further comprising a first leg disposed slidingly relative to the base, wherein the first side panel is attached to the first leg.

5. The shoe imaging stand of claim 1, further comprising a means for facilitating imaging the base, the first side panel, and the center panel, wherein the means for facilitating the imaging is disposed at a position in which the measurement markings are visible.

6. The shoe imaging stand of claim 5, wherein the means for facilitating the imaging comprises a support structure configured for receiving an imaging device thereon.

7. The shoe imaging stand of claim 5 wherein the means for facilitating the imaging comprises an imaging device.

8. The shoe imaging stand of claim 7, wherein the imaging device comprises a digital camera.

9. An shoe imaging stand, comprising: a base; a center panel, connected to the base; a first side panel, disposed on a first sliding leg slidingly engaged with the base, the first side panel thereby configured to have a laterally adjustable position relative to the base; a second side panel, disposed on a second sliding leg slidingly engaged with the base on an opposite side of the center panel from the first side panel, the second side panel thereby configured to have a laterally adjustable position relative to the base; wherein the base, the first side panel, and the second side panel comprise edges having measurement markings thereon.

10. The shoe imaging stand of claim 9, further comprising a support structure configured for mounting a camera thereon, such that the camera is thereby positioned to image the shoe imaging stand.

11. A method comprising: positioning a shoe on a shoe imaging stand; adjusting a position of a side panel of the shoe imaging stand to be proximate to the shoe; and imaging the shoe imaging stand with the shoe positioned therein.

12. The method of claim 11, wherein positioning the shoe on the shoe imaging stand comprises positioning the shoe on a base of the shoe imaging stand between the side panel and a center panel of the shoe imaging stand.

13. The method of claim 12, wherein at least one of the base, the center panel, or the side panel comprises measurement markings proximate to an edge thereof.

14. The method of claim 11, further comprising storing the image of the shoe imaging stand with the shoe positioned therein in a database.

15. The method of claim 11, further comprising storing a representation of the image of the shoe imaging stand with the shoe positioned therein in a database.

Description:

CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION

The present application is based on and claims the benefit of U.S. provisional patent application Ser. No. 60/861,026, filed Nov. 27, 2006, the content of which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.

FIELD OF THE DISCLOSURE

The present disclosure relates to the general art of law enforcement equipment, and in particular to imaging equipment used in law enforcement.

BACKGROUND

Many law enforcement processes require and depend on accurately identifying shoe treads. Often, shoe tread marks left at the scene of a crime can be used to connect a suspect with the crime. However, it has been the experience of the inventor that it is often very difficult to obtain accurate records of shoe treads.

The discussion above is merely provided for general background information and is not intended to be used as an aid in determining the scope of the claimed subject matter.

SUMMARY

An aspect of the present disclosure is directed to a shoe imaging stand apparatus and a process for using a shoe imaging stand. In accordance with an illustrative embodiment, the shoe imaging stand includes a base, a center panel, and a side panel. The center panel is connected to the base, and the side panel is disposed on the base and configured to have an adjustable position relative to the base. At least one of the base, the center panel, or the side panel comprises measurement markings proximate to an edge thereof.

This Summary is provided to introduce a selection of concepts in a simplified form that are further described below in the Detailed Description. This Summary is not intended to identify key features or essential features of the claimed subject matter, nor is it intended to be used as an aid in determining the scope of the claimed subject matter. The claimed subject matter is not limited to implementations that solve any or all disadvantages noted in the background.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 provides a perspective view of a shoe imaging stand, according to an illustrative embodiment.

FIG. 2 depicts a flowchart for a process of using a shoe imaging stand, according to an illustrative embodiment.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF ILLUSTRATIVE EMBODIMENTS

FIG. 1 depicts a shoe imaging stand 10, according to an illustrative embodiment. Shoe imaging stand 10 enables obtaining accurate images of shoes and shoe treads, such as for law enforcement purposes. According to one illustrative embodiment, shoe imaging stand 10 is configured to securely support one or more shoes for imaging a shoe and its tread, such as for the shoe or shoes of an inmate, a suspect, or a person of interest in a law enforcement or other investigative context. The imaged shoe and tread may be added to a database, which may contain the images of many such shoes, and may facilitate a variety of investigative functions.

In accordance with the embodiment of FIG. 1, shoe imaging stand 10 includes a base 12 have a base edge 14 with measurement markings 16 thereon. A plurality of sliding legs 20, 22 are mounted on the base 12, and a plurality of side panels 30, 32 are attached to sliding legs 20, 22 by L-shaped brackets 34. (The L-shaped bracket 34 is depicted in FIG. 1 for side panel 32, while the corresponding L-shaped bracket for side panel 30 is obscured from view in the depiction of FIG. 1.) The sliding legs 20, 22 are slidingly engaged with the base 12, thereby configuring the side panels 30, 32 to have laterally adjustable positions relative to the base 12.

Each of the side panels 30, 32 has a panel edge 36 that is located in plane with and adjacent to base edge 14. Each of the panel edges 36 has measurement markings 38 thereon, in the present illustrative embodiment. A center panel 42 is also mounted on base 12 between the side panels 30. Shoe imaging stand 10 is also thereby enabled to receive a shoe between center panel 42 and each of side panels 30, 32. Center panel 42 may be stationary in the embodiment of FIG. 1. In other embodiments, center panel 42 may also have an adjustable position, and may also feature measurement markings along its edge.

Shoe imaging stand 10 may be used according to a process 200 which is depicted in flowchart form in FIG. 2. According to the illustrative process 200, in a first step 201, a shoe is set upright at the edge of the stand 10, between center panel 42 and first side panel 30. Side panel 30 is adjusted to be proximate to the shoe, as in step 203, and may securely maintain the shoe in position for imaging, for a wide variety of shapes and sizes of shoes. These steps may also be done for two shoes at the same time, one each on either side of center panel 42, supported respectively with side panels 30, 32. The measurement markings 16, 38 may, for example, indicate inches, feet, centimeters, millimeters, and/or other units of measuring length.

With the shoes disposed in the shoe imaging stand, the stand 10 with the shoes may be photographed or otherwise imaged or observed, as in step 205. In an image made in this arrangement, the measurement markings 16, 38 on base 12 and side panels 30, 32, and/or measurement markings on center panel 42 in another embodiment, appear in close proximity to the shoe and its tread, facilitating an accurate recording of the physical features of the shoe and its tread. With these images or representations of the images stored in a database, they may more easily be communicated, widely shared, accessed as needed, and analyzed for investigative and other law enforcement purposes.

Shoe imaging stand 10 is therefore configured to receive a shoe between center panel 42 and the first side panel 30, and another shoe between center panel 42 and the second side panel 32, with the soles of the shoes in plane with edges 14, 36, and the tread of the shoes adjacent to the measurement markings 16, 38 on edges 14, 36. Other embodiments may have only a single side panel and be configured to receive a single shoe for imaging, for example, or may have more panels than are depicted in FIG. 1 and may be configured for imaging more than two shoes at a time. Other embodiments may also include a support structure configured for mounting an imaging device thereon, such as a digital camera, such that the camera is thereby positioned to image the shoe imaging stand, along with any shoes positioned in it at the time.

Shoe imaging stand 10, and other embodiments with variations on the particular features disclosed in FIG. 1, thereby facilitate imaging shoes and their tread with a proximate basis for comparison and measurement, providing for highly accurate and informative records of the shoes. Such records may, for example, be compared with evidence from crime scenes and other physical scenarios in law enforcement and other investigative contexts.

Although the present disclosure has been described with reference to particular illustrative embodiments, workers skilled in the art will recognize that changes may be made in form and detail without departing from the disclosure or the claims herein. Many variations among different embodiments may also be made within the metes and bounds of the subject matter described by the present disclosure and defined by the claims recited below.





 
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