Public can sample world of Court TV
By BARBARA L. FREDRICKSEN, Times Staff Writer
NEW PORT RICHEY -- Want to learn from the experts about fingerprinting, handwriting analysis, and other crime investigation techniques? How about an audition to be the anchor on a major cable television network? Well, anchor-for-a-day, anyway.
You'll get your chance when the Court TV channel's new Mobile Investigation Unit (MIU), comes to Gulf View Square mall from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and noon to 5:30 p.m. Sunday. The two-truck exhibit is making stops at 20 cities across the United States.
Adults and students can visit four interactive kiosks in the exhibit and do a simulated investigation of a caper, "Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar," by gathering fingerprints, footprints, fibers, hair and handwriting samples and using forensic science to analyze what they reveal about the culprit.
Visitors also can audition to be an investigative reporter for Court TV. At the tour's end, Court TV will choose one participant to be "anchor for a day" on the channel.
Every child who visits the MIU will receive a personal forensic file with digital photos and fingerprints.
Court TV channel is broadcast in west Pasco on Time Warner cable's regular Channel 55 and digital Channel 57. During the day, the cable channel broadcasts live trials. In the evenings, it shows original programs such as Forensic Files, original films such as Guilt by Association and reruns of such law enforcement shows as NYPD Blue. The channel won the 2001 Alfred I. du Pont-Columbia University Award for excellence in broadcast journalism for its documentary, The System: The Interrogation of Michael Crowe, about a teenager's false murder confession.
All the exhibits and activities in MIU are free.
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