CSI camp involves math, science, fun

Published 9:46 pm Monday, July 20, 2009

The Suffolk Police Department wants to give young people in the city an idea of what it’s like to work for a real crime scene investigation unit.

“CSI on TV is a big thing to all the kids,” said Joan Jones, supervisor of the police department’s forensic unit. “We wanted to show them what real CSIs do.”

To that end, the police department will host the third annual Junior Forensic “CSI” Camp Aug. 11-13. The camp, open to students in grades 6-8, will run from 8:30 a.m. to noon each day at the Nansemond Suffolk Rescue Squad, 428 Market St. There is a $25 registration fee for the camp, and only a few slots are left.

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Jones said the camp not only helps students retain their lessons from the school year, but also exposes them to a possible career opportunity.

“They learn a lot of math and science,” she said. “We wanted to show them a different kind of science that’s fun.”

The first day of the camp will be the classroom portion, where students will learn how to be junior crime investigators. On the second day, campers will be divided into teams and will investigate mock “crime scenes,” including a robbery, burglary, abduction and recovered stolen vehicle.

The campers will be taught to do exactly what real crime scene investigators do at scenes — take notes, photos and sketches, Jones said. The teams later will present their cases and their carefully collected evidence, and detail what tests they will ask the laboratory to run on the evidence, such as DNA, fingerprints.

“We’re really excited about it,” Jones said. In the camp’s previous two years, it has hosted a total of 120 children. Forty children attended the first year, and it was so successful immediately that police planned two sessions the following year — one in downtown Suffolk and one in North Suffolk.

To register for this year’s session, call 514-7940.