GCU’s Forensic Photography Course Teaches Students Crime Scene Investigation Techniques | Arizona News


Grand Canyon University’s Forensic Science Program has added forensic photography to its offerings and we have been fortunate enough to support students as they hone their investigative skills. crime scenes.

If you’ve watched the “Dexter” TV series before, this process may sound familiar to you.

Dexter made him famous.

This is called the blood splatter cordage.


Essentially, GCU’s lab is covered in spray of blood on large pieces of paper.

Students then tie a string to each individual drop, then use complex calculations and evidence to determine the angle of the weapon and the strength of the attack.

Once completed, all the strings lead back to the exact position of the victim at the time of the assault.

This process is not used as much today as it was in the past.

These days, criminal investigators quickly take pictures and process everything in the lab.

However, GCU associate forensic professor Melissa Beddow says it helps to understand how to deal with the crime scene without computer technology.

“This is used more for a visual for juries. I think 70% of people are visual learners and therefore showing where all those bloodstains are coming from. It allows the jury to actually see the physical position in which the victim had to be for those bloodstains to get there, ”Beddow said.

This scientific and forensic photograph ensures that everything in the photo is something that is documented, all to facilitate processing of the crime scene.

We also spoke with Hannah Lenthall, second year GCU student, intern in the medical examiner’s office.

She says a lot of what she’s learned in this class is exactly what she sees investigators doing when she’s at the murder scenes.

“I drive the investigators to the scene, then I take all the photos for them, we take a certification course to make sure we take the correct photos, then we prepare the body bag and put the body in the body bag,” Lenthall said. .

“What does it look like,” CBS 5 This Morning presenter Preston Phillips asked.

“It’s weird at first,” Lenthall replied, “but then it becomes like a routine and you get used to it a bit,” Lenthall said.

She says she hopes to use it one day when she becomes a true crime scene investigator.

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