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Crime scene investigator to discuss Aurora mass shooting at Lycoming’s annual Strauser Lecture

Crime scene investigator to discuss Aurora mass shooting at Lycoming’s annual Strauser Lecture

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Darvin Harrell, crime scene investigator with the city of Aurora, Colo., will be the next guest speaker of Lycoming College’s annual Strauser Lecture Series. The talk, “C-16: A Forensic Perspective” is slated for Monday, March 28, at 4 p.m., in the Academic Center, D001. A reception in Pennington Lounge will follow the lecture. This event is free and open to the public. Harrell was previously slated to speak at Lycoming in March of 2020, but the event was postponed due to Covid-19 concerns.

During his lecture, Harrell will focus on his experiences as a crime scene investigator in the Aurora Crime Lab, including his work on the well-known case of the Century 16 Theater mass shooting of 2012. Throughout his twenty-year tenure in the lab, Harrell has worked on thousands of cases, ranging from burglaries to homicides, performing tasks such as photographing crime scenes, fingerprinting items, using chemicals to discover further evidence, and identifying different types of evidence.

Harrell graduated in 1993 from South Dakota State University with a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and a minor in chemistry. In addition to working as a Crime Scene Investigator, he is also endorsed as an expert witness for testifying in the Federal and local court systems for crime scene processing, fingerprinting, fingerprint processing, gunshot residue and DNA collection.

“Darvin brings to life both the logistics and psychological toll of processing a complicated crime scene,” said Julie Yingling, Ph.D., assistant professor of Criminal Justice at Lycoming College.

With the annual Strauser Lecture Series, Lycoming honors the legacy of Professor Larry R. Strauser, who began the criminal justice major at Lycoming College in 1975. He envisioned a unique interdisciplinary curriculum at a liberal arts college that would contribute to the reformation of the criminal justice system. Under Strauser’s direction, the program grew, and today many alumni have gone on to successful criminal justice careers.

The Strauser Lecture highlights the work of criminal justice practitioners and researchers who are dedicated to improving criminal justice practice and policy. A few of the experts who have delivered Strauser Lectures include Ramiro Martinez, Ph.D., professor of sociology and criminology and criminal justice at Northeastern University; Thomas Vanaskie ’75, Lycoming alum and Federal Judge of the U.S. District Court of the Middle District of Pennsylvania; and Elijah Anderson, Ph.D. and William K. Lanman Jr. Professor of Sociology at Yale University.

More information on criminology and criminal justice studies at Lycoming College can be found at


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