Forensic Science Competition State Champions

May 24, 2007
Contact: Amy Koenig (602)340-7357
PDFPrint Press Release

The Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education is pleased to announce the State Champions of the Second Annual Arizona Forensic Science: Crime Scene Investigation Competition.

The winner of the Middle School division was Centennial Middle School from Yuma, coached by School Resource Officer Alan Ienn & Teachers Elaine Potes and Vicky Farland. From the High School division, the winner was North Canyon High School Team 3 from Phoenix, coached by School Resource Officer Merry Huffman & Teacher Don Davis.

Both Centennial and North Canyon had more than one team qualify for the state competition.

Other teams competing included:

  • Crane Middle School - Yuma - Officer(s) Ben Olivas/Ken Vandersloot, Cindy Karvel
  • Desert Sands Middle School - Phoenix - Officer Jason Corona, John Halverson
  • Sierra Vista Middle School – Sierra Vista - Officer Wanda Leikem
  • Cibola High School – Yuma- Officer Ken Vandersloot, Shawn Ferry East Valley Institute of Technology – Mesa - Officer Art Motroni, Brian Kennedy


The competition was held on Friday, May 15, 2007 in Phoenix. Each team was provided a realistic crime scene scenario, and was required to gather and analyze the evidence to solve the crime. The teams were judged on the evidence gathering process, critical thinking skills, and oral presentation of their findings.

The Forensic Science Competition was hosted by the Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education with the support from the Arizona Department of Education and the Phoenix Police Department.

Judges for the competition included Phoenix police officers, crime lab personnel, and science professionals. Representatives from the Arizona Domestic Violence Legal Services Project, attending the state wide Legal Services Conference at the same location acted as witnesses in the case.

The teams were selected based on a report they submitted documenting how the evidence from a mock crime scene was processed, preserved, analyzed and interpreted. Each of the 20 reports submitted were evaluated by a panel of police officers and the top 5 Middle School and top 5 High School submissions were invited to the State Showcase.

About Arizona’s Forensic Science Program

CSI Arizona is a Forensic Science program which combines science and law to provide students with the opportunity to develop skills in both fields through the application of crime scene analysis, evidence gathering, critical thinking, and communication and presentation skills. Students are able to engage in practical experience of applying the law and science to a real life scenario. The Foundation provides training and support for teachers in the program through the Law Related Education Academy, and hosts the competition. The only other state to hold a forensic competition is New York.


The Arizona Forensic Science showcase would not be possible without the nearly 70 volunteers that gave their time and energy to make the event happen. A special thanks to all the following:

Ed DeCastro, Tina Ochoa, Shawn Benjamin, David Berni, Christine Bussell, Amber Campbell, Jon Copeland, Joseph Delgado, Shayleen Eastman, David Hickman, Kimberly Johnson, Richard Kerger, Jeff King, Kimberly Kobojek, Kristen Marquis, Robert Miller, Dan Pringle, Lucy Rand, Richard Speer, John Stein, Thomas Stewart, Brenda Wolpa, Lee Yacuel, Jerry Yarbrough, Margaret  Aguilar, Gina Omanson, Erika  Berra, Michael  Campbell, Nick  Hobbs, Yi An Lai, Trisha  Larsen, Emily  Newman, Jesse Nichols, Jennifer  Phillips, Rebecca  Robinson, Lacey Thompson, Dayis  Ardon, Nancy  Avelar, Jazmin Bueno, Maria Calles, Manuel  Carillo, Nancy  Flores, Alexis  Gonzales, Fausto  Hernandez, Ramon  Jauregui, Laura  Leon, Mauricio Lopez, Trinidad  Machorro, Sonia  Orquiz, Anita  Ramirez , Ana  Salgado, Teresa  DeCastro, Officer Speedy, Wilbur Brown, Jill Christman, Greg Clark, Abby Dupke, Jodi Marie Hammond, Kim Hennen, Andrew Hinz, Rebecca Lauchner, Deborah Lee, Anita McDonald, Deanna Moore, Brendan  Moroney, Tawny Peralta, Ren  Wakefield