Interactive installation aims to stop criminals getting away with murder
By Chris Date on Monday, June 18, 2012
Hundreds or perpetrators of violent crime are escaping conviction due to a failure to preserve crime scenes that could contain DNA evidence crucial to identifying them. This is according to South Africa’s DNA Project, a non-profit organisation working to ensure justice is meted out to criminals through the proper use of DNA analysis and a national DNA database which would help to nab repeat offenders.
There is still a huge amount of groundwork to be done to educate both the public and emergency response staff about the importance of preserving a crime scene, as in some cases it can take a few days for officials to arrive and collect all of the evidence. As well as holding free workshops and assisting in training paramedics and other emergency responders on how to leave a crime scene intact for forensic investigators, the DNA project also recently created a public installation at the Cape Town train station which simulated the destruction of a crime scene.
A large sand box was placed in the centre of the station with stones depicting the face of a convicted felon. Early morning commuters were able to walk over the scene, eventually making the face unidentifiable.
Volunteers from the DNA Project were on hand to answer questions from interested passers-by, thousands of commuters engaged directly with the installation while widespread media pick-up led to the key messages from the activity being pushed out across South Africa and beyond.
Agency: FoxP2, Cape Town
Source: DNA Project