| The Hoot
CSI: WilliamWoods University
Students put their skills to the
test in a mock crime
By Leigh Rice
First there was CSI: Crime Scene
Investigation, then CSI: Miami and
CSI: New York. Now there is CSI:
William Woods University.
A judge and bailiff were “murdered” late
last semester in WWU’s Weitzman Model
Courtroom. While most WWU students were
taking written final exams, the students of the
crime scene investigation class pulled out their
notepads and cameras and searched for clues to
solve the murders.
That, along with a written paper detailing their
findings, was their final exam.
While having a crime scene scenario may seem
more appealing than a written final, I found
the exercise to be more stressful and mentally
demanding,” Caroline Boulanger, one of the
However,” she added, “for this class it served as
an excellent demonstration of all the skills
we had learned from the classroom. It proves
how demanding the job of a crime scene
For their exam, I asked my students to enter into
a crime scene and document the evidence they
might find,” said Bob Ahsens, WWU assistant
professor of legal studies.
The students were not given any hints going into
the exercise. All they had was the information
given by a janitor who had been first on the scene,
and he had only witnessed the aftermath of
With the evidence found, they were asked
to create a photo log and use the evidence
collected for the complete crime scene report,”
said Ahsens, a retired Missouri assistant attorney
general with 30 years of experience as a criminal
Caroline Boulanger photographs the deceased bailiff, Seth Thompson. Thompson was one of two victims.
Photo courtesy of WWU