Forensic Science Solves Mystery of Blackbeard’s Death

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Thurston students retrieve a “body” from the Dana Point shoreline as part of forensic science elective.
Thurston students retrieve a “body” from the Dana Point shoreline as part of forensic science elective.

Nearly 300 years after the death of Edward Teach, better known as Blackbeard, students of Thurston Middle School are solving the mystery of the notorious pirate’s death.

Using crime scene investigation techniques, the students examined the “dead bodies” of Blackbeard and another pirate after they washed ashore in Dana Point as part of a hands-on learning experience last week offered through a school elective.

Students documented the crime scene near the Dana Point tide pools using a 360-degree camera and a drone to preserve the evidence and then analyzed and processed the bodies at the Ocean Institute, says a statement from Cox Communications, which supports the program.

The student forensic crime team retrieved a faux body underwater using a robot they designed and built with help from forensic anthropologist Noelle Martinez.

Later, students will test their forensic evidence in a mock trial in May.

 

 

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