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*Videos are necessary for completion of this worksheet.
As of July 2017, all episodes in this purchase are available free on You Tube which would make it ideal for computer lab or homework assignments (technology access provided).
Included are 10 worksheets for episodes of the television program Forensic Files. All of the episodes are available to view online for free (my preference is through YouTube). This makes this program great for in-class, computer lab, extra credit, or homework assignments since most students will have access to the programs through a variety of means.
The question sheets go in order through each episode with a focus on the science behind each case as well as the legal circumstances. I try to provide a variety of episodes to give students a wide range of ideas on how the career of a forensic scientist works. The episodes included in this bundle package (with their season and episode number) are:
Bed of Deceit (Season 8, Episode 28)
A retired police officer is discovered in his bed, dead of a single gunshot wound to the head. His wife first says the motive was robbery; then she tells police he committed suicide. It would take careful examination of the evidence at the crime scene, the tape from a bank surveillance camera, and forensic textbooks found in the victim's home to write the final chapter of this real-life whodunit.
Blood Trail (Season 2, Episode 6)
Graham Backhouse was a farmer who wasn't well received by his community. On two occasions, Graham reported death threats. When his wife Margaret went to use Graham's car to run errands, a bomb ignited when she started it which nearly killed her. Police responded to a call from the farm, where they found that Graham had shot and killed his next door neighbor under the guise of self-defense. Using forensic science, investigators found Graham had actually manipulated the crime scene, the death threats and the bomb, all to benefit from his wife's life insurance.
The List Murders (Season 1, Episode 12)
In 1971, John List left a note with the bodies of his mother, wife, and three children in his mansion ballroom, funeral organ music blaring from a central sound system, and disappeared. Eighteen years later, all detectives had to work from is an outdated photograph of List. In 1989, the popular television series America's Most Wanted commissioned an age-scaled bust of List to aid viewers in identifying the confessed murderer. Dr. Frank Bender, nationally-recognized artist and sculptor, worked with forensic psychologist Richard Walter to develop a profile of the aging List. The final bust was so keenly accurate that 350 viewers called with tips, one of which led to List's arrest.
Pure Evil (Season 6, Episode 19)
Creating a profile of a serial killer, is part science and part intuition. The science involves studying criminals who have committed similar crimes, to see what characteristics they all have in common. One common trait among serial killers, is a past history of abusing animals. In a search for the killer of two teenagers in Texas, a behavioral profile led to suspect Jason Massey – and hard science proved the profile was correct. Massey was executed by lethal injection on April 3, 2001.
Sex, Lies, and DNA (Season 2, Episode 4)
Cindy Morris reported to the police that her mother Ruby was missing after not showing up for a shopping trip. Ruby's husband Earl Morris became a suspect once blood samples were found in the bathroom leading police to believe Ruby had suffered a severe blow to the head. Further investigation led to Earl's boat that had been taken out and never returned. There had been a report of a boat that caught fire and sank. Police were able to determine that the boat belonged to Earl after reviewing footage from a TV crew and photographs from the Coast Guard. Earl claimed his wife had committed suicide, but was quickly indicted by the jury who saw through his lies.
Smoke in Your Eyes (Season 8, Episode 29)
A suspicious fire swept through an apartment killing two young women. The cause of the fire and the identity of the victims were unclear. But a closer look at the fire scene revealed, something hidden in the ashes. Could gas chromatography, a burnt pair of eyeglasses, and a half smoked cigarette, solve the case?
Time Will Tell (Season 5, Episode 15)
In this international case of extortion, murder, and stolen identities, a Canadian scam-artist Albert J. Walker assumes the identity of co-worker Ronald Platt as part of a money-laundering scheme. Platt later turns up dead in an ocean, with an anchor tied around his torso. The only clues to his real identity are a Rolex watch and a maple leaf tattoo. But, the anchor used to sink Platt's dead body ultimately sunk Albert Walker.
When the Dust Settled (Season 8, Episode 13)
A union official is executed in his home not long after a strike by the union membership. Neither his wife, who was sleeping in the adjacent bedroom, nor anyone in the neighborhood, heard any gunshots. It would take a forensic sound test, an electron microscope, and a nightgown to explain why.
Whodunit? (Season 6, Episode 12)
In 1998, an evening out at a Maryland murder mystery theatre performance turns into a real life whodunit when the badly burned body of Stephen Hricko is discovered in his hotel room after a fire. Upon initial investigation, it appeared to be an accidental fire. Lies, greed and medical trickery can't match the skills of forensic scientists, who bring the curtain down on the real killer, his wife Kimberly Hricko.
The Wilson Murder (Season 1, Episode 8)
Eye doctor Jack Wilson is found dead by his wife Betty, having been beaten, stabbed and lying in a pool of blood with a baseball bat nearby. Police arrest an itinerant painter/handyman who is found with the doctor's credit cards. He accuses the doctor's unfaithful wife and her twin sister of hiring him to commit the murder. The wife is sent to prison, but at her sister's trial, attorneys finally bring in a forensic expert who testifies that the crime could not have been committed the way the painter said. The sister is acquitted. But the wife remains in prison, and the mystery goes unsolved.
Questions on the assignments go in order and will help students remain focused on key science topics. Two extended response questions are on the back of the worksheet (description and compare/contrast) which are perfect for reflection and discussion at the conclusion of the video. There are also additional writing prompts for every episode included with a power point for easy classroom display.
The worksheets are given as a MS-Word document which will allow easy modifying to fit your class.
*Besides You Tube, the video needed for viewing can be purchased through a variety of sellers both as physical media or through streaming viewing (including Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu - availability does change).
Thank you for your purchase and for taking the time to leave me positive feedback.
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