Criminology students host bomb squad demonstration

Investigators will demonstrate bomb-detection methods — including a bomb-sniffing dog and a remote-controlled robot — in a demonstration on campus Wednesday sponsored by criminology students.
The demonstration, by the state fire marshal's Fire and Explosion Investigation Section, will be outside O'Brien Hall from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 14

Massachusetts State Police Lt. Paul Zipper, the section commander, will lead the demonstration. Zipper is also an adjunct professor who teaches the class “Youth, Deviance and Crime”, said associate professor Karen Hayden, the Criminology Department chair and faculty adviser for the Criminology Club.

“It’s in the area of policing I thought our students would be interested in,” she said. “I think it’s going to open up another area they might not have thought about when they went into criminology.”

Zipper spent more than 20 years in explosives investigations — reconstructing fire scenes, honing his skills interviewing witnesses, and interrogating suspects during the course of hundreds of cases.

His work with the Lawrence, Mass., Arson Task Force earned him international recognition. He has taught arson investigation class at the FBI Academy and lectured in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Wednesday’s demonstration will be open to the Merrimack community and will offer light refreshments.

Hayden likes the demonstration so much she is offering extra credit for attending to students in her “Introduction to Crime” class, and is hoping it spurs interest in the Criminology Club.

The event will move indoors in case of bad weather.