Crime scene lab is on horizon

Progress is made for the project, but location still being determined

Courtney Upah, Staff Writer

Although there is no set timeline, the idea of having a crime scene investigation lab on campus seems to slowly be moving forward.

“It started probably a year and a half ago already. From my perspective criminal justice is becoming more scientific in regard to analysis of crime scenes,” criminal justice professor Jason Karsky said. “We’ve changed one of our courses to be introduction to crime scene investigation, and that dovetails nicely with actually having a facility.”

In crime scene investigation class, students learn the basics of how to run and work a crime scene, from stopping contamination to collecting and marking evidence.

This class has worked indoors and outdoors before, but with a crime scene lab there would be one stable location to make the investigation easier.

No final decisions have been made, but there has been inquiry as to what facility would be best for the lab.

“We’ve had students in the drafting class here at Wayne State College come up with plans, and they presented them to us in regard to what kind of house might work best for a crime scene house,” Karsky said. “And we’ve also explored some houses that are for sale on campus and around town.”

The criteria for this building is that it needs to facilitate the students, the instructors, the equipment and what is needed to simulate a crime scene.

“I know law enforcement and even emergency services are positive or receptive to the possibility of using it for trainings,” criminal justice professor Dr. Andria Cooper said.

The crime scene house not only would benefit law enforcement and criminal justice majors, but students in other fields as well.

Some of the fields that could possibly use the house would be those studying journalism, biology, theater, chemistry, physics and forensic anthropology.

Overall this is an idea still in the making, but people involved keep a positive attitude.

“Anytime that students have an opportunity to have hands on learning helps the criminal justice field become more professional,” Cooper said. “In today’s job and college market, it seems like an added bonus or attractive feature for current and future students to have a crime scene lab.”