University of Dundee

‘CSI Dundee’ and Professor Sue Black in conversation, Friday 15 June 7pm and Saturday 16 June 2-4 pm

13 Jun 2012

Ever watched a forensics team tackle a crime scene on a TV drama and wondered how it works? Well, the University of Dundee’s Professor Sue Black and her crack team will be showing people what a forensic investigation really consists of this weekend.

‘CSI Dundee!’ takes place at The Vine, Roseangle, from 2-4 pm on Saturday, June 16th. It follows an event the previous evening where Professor Black, Director of the University’s Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification (CADID) and star of the BBC Two series ‘History Cold Case’, will talk about her career.

She will also discuss Million For A Morgue (MFAM), the campaign to raise funds for the first Thiel morgue in the UK. ‘Professor Sue Black, OBE: Cold Cases and History’ takes place at the Dalhousie Building at 7pm on Friday, June 15th. Both events are taking place as part of the city’s West Fest celebrations.

‘CSI Dundee!’ will see Professor Black and her colleagues simulate the scene that might await investigators in the aftermath of a terrible crime. The day is being organised by Dr Chris Rynn, and several forensics stations will be set up to demonstrate the work that professionals working in different areas of forensic investigation carry out. These include:

·         Disaster victim identification

·         Facial reconstruction

·         Vein pattern identification

·         Comparative anatomy

·         Beetles de-fleshing victims

·         Gathering microscopic evidence.

“When I was a third year Anatomy student I was given a corpse to examine and was exhilarated by the experience of 'knowing what we look like on the inside',” explained Professor Black.

“There are a lot of myths about forensic investigation that have been spread by various TV shows, so we’re keen to show people the reality of what happens on a crime scene and demonstrate how we go through the process of pulling together the various clues to give a more complete picture of what happened.”

‘CSI Dundee!’ is free, and open to everyone over the age of 11. Friday’s event, chaired by Eddie Small from the University’s English programme, is a fundraising event for MFAM. Tickets, costing £5 and £3 (concessions) are available from the University's Online store or by calling 01382 384413.

MFAM aims to raise £1million to build a new morgue, which will allow members of the CAHID team to adopt the revolutionary Thiel method of embalming. The team have developed groundbreaking techniques in areas such as hand identification, which has directly led to the successful prosecution of a number of paedophiles identified from images of their hands found in obscene photographs and films.

The Centre also runs a major training programme in Disaster Victim Identification, which has trained police officers in practical techniques in human identification, enabling them to be deployed to help identify victims of mass fatalities anywhere in the world.

Dundee is the first University in the UK to adopt the Thiel method, which gives surgeons, dentists, students and medical researchers a more realistic method of testing techniques, practising procedures and developing new equipment and approaches.

More information about Million For A Morgue can be found at www.millionforamorgue.com.

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