Students in Criminal Justice Fraternity Bring Home Third-Place Win from Regional Conference
October 29, 2013
MACOMB, IL -- Three students in the Western Illinois University chapter of Lambda Alpha Epsilon (LAE), a professional fraternity of the American Criminal Justice Association (ACJA), brought home a third place win in a recent crime scene investigation (CSI) contest in Chicago. WIU LAE Chapter President Nick Rubino (Geneseo, IL), junior, law enforcement and justice administration major; Community Service Officer Kelsey Kowalski (Ottawa, IL), junior, emergency management major; and Jessica Kaluza (Woodstock, IL), sophomore, pre-law enforcement major, comprise the team that placed third in the CSI contest at the 2013 ACJA-LAE Regional Conference Oct. 11-13.
According to Kowalski, the regional conference included written examination contests, as well as the CSI competition.
"For the CSI competition, we were called to the mock crime scene, a hotel room where a female guest was allegedly raped and murdered. After we got on scene, we spoke to the responding officer (who was the contest judge) and conducted a crime scene investigation from there. We had 15 minutes to create a rough sketch of the room, search for all evidence we could find and create records of all the evidence. We then had 45 minutes to create an evidence log, final sketch of the room and complete a written report," she explained.
Kowalski said the students also participated in the written examination contests offered at the conference, but she felt her law enforcement classes at Western are what helped the team bring home a third-place finish in the CSI contest.
"Honestly, I didn't even know we were in the CSI competition until we got there. We worked so well together, you would have thought we had been preparing for months. I think it shows how our classes here prepare us for the field," Kowalski added.
Western's LAE chapter is advised by WIU School of Law Enforcement and Justice Administration Professor Dennis Bowman. Kowalski noted, with his support, the students set out to attend the regional conference this year because they wanted to "become better."
"We wanted to improve our chapter, ourselves and to represent the law enforcement and justice administration (LEJA) program here. Our chapter, from what we know, has never been to regionals. We have the largest chapter out of all seven states in the region, so we had to go to show them what Western is all about," Kowalski added.
For more information, contact Kowalski at KM-Kowalski@wiu.edu.