Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Stillwater County Sheriff’s Deputy Randy Smith explains crime scene investigation techniques to a group of children during the CSI at the Library program on Feb. 6.

CSI for young investigative eyes

A group of Stillwater County youth gathered at the Stillwater County Library Friday, Feb. 6 to learn crime scene investigation techniques and work on solving “The Case of the Disappearing Donations.”
The youth investigators are learning crime scene investigation as well as forensic techniques like fiber analysis, fingerprinting, chromatography, and blood typing.
The case they are investigating involves the mysterious theft of a large donation from the library safe. There is no evidence of forced entry, and the alarm system was still active following the discovery, suggesting that the crime might be an inside job. Several suspects have been identified. Fortunately, the investigators were able to discover some forensic evidence left by the thief.
Stillwater County Sheriff’s Deputy Randy Smith is teaching the aspiring investigators how to process the crime scene and collect evidence that will stand up in court. Smith introduced the participants to the tools used by the Sheriff’s Department for investigating crime scenes and explained the importance of preserving evidence.
Smith also answered a number of questions from the youth about investigative techniques. While discussing the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), one young investigator asked Smith if AFIS had ever been hacked before. Smith replied that he was not aware of that.
The CSI at the Library program is being conducted in three sessions.
The youth investigators will begin processing the crime scene during the second session on Feb. 13. The program will conclude on Feb. 20 when the investigators solve “The Case of the Disappearing Donations.”
All youth in Stillwater County are invited to participate in the program. The program is being held on Fridays from 5 p.m. until 6 p.m.