Forensic science expert Dr. Henry Lee to speak in Vernon
By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Vernon - posted Fri., Sep. 16, 2011
Known for his testimony in such high-profile cases as the O.J. Simpson murder trial and the Jon-Benet Ramsey investigation, Dr. Henry Lee has become one of the most recognizable names in the field of forensic science.
Carl Slicer, co-chair of the Vernon Police Explorers, had seen Lee speak on several occasions, and thought that the doctor would appeal to people in the Vernon area. “I was inspired to bring him in,” Slicer said. Lee will speak at Rockville High School on Oct. 8. Slicer warned that the material presented is graphic and not recommended for people under the age of 14.
“We can expect a basic review of the highlights of the cases that he's worked on,” Slicer said, “and the difference that he has made in law enforcement, as well as encouragement to young people who are on the edge of deciding where to take their careers.”
Lee is currently the Chief Emeritus for Scientific Services for the State of Connecticut. He is also a lecturing professor at the University of New Haven, where he helped form the Henry C. Lee Forensic Institute. Slicer said that when Lee was first hired as the state's lead criminalist in 1979, he asked then-Gov. Ella Grasso to allow him to be a consultant on out-of-state cases. Lee did not take consulting fees, except for small stipends, on those high-profile cases.
“He’s just fascinating to listen to,” Slicer said, adding that Lee still works on many cases for free, because it makes a difference in people’s lives, such as enabling them to find closure.
Slicer said many students from schools including Goodwin College and the University of Connecticut in fields related to forensics are planning to attend, but the presentation will also appeal to the “true crimes crowd” – fans of real-life forensics and forensic cases.
According to Slicer, UConn forensics professor Dr. Colleen Sperling was among those who were excited to hear that Lee was visiting the area. “When she found out he was coming, she was jumping up and down,” he said, adding that Sperling offered her students extra credit for attending the event.
For more information, including ticket sales, visit www.vernonpoliceexplorers.com.