Frog dissection, or slimy crime?May 19, 1997
Web posted at: 11:00 p.m. EDT (0300 GMT)
From Correspondent Anne McDermott
LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Seventh-grade sleuths are trying to solve a host of apparent slayings.
There's the case of D. Slimyskin -- he bought it with bullets. Then there's Jo Toadness, electrocuted in the living room. D. Frog turned up his toes in the tub, while T. Tadpolian was found dead in a bed.
First the budding criminalists identify the victims, all frogs. The students collect fingerprints and clues. The little frog victims even have toe -- make that web -- tags.
The cause of K.C. Amphibious' death appears obvious. "It looks like he was stabbed once outside and four times inside -- vicious," one girl observes to her lab partners.
Then it's time for the autopsies. That part will be familiar to anyone who survived biology dissection. Science teacher Christine Karlberg decided plain old frog dissecting can be forgettable, so she's making it more memorable with murder.
"They want the bloodiest, most violent scene possible in most cases," Karlberg says of her students.
Using frog victims, students figure out whodunnit using forensic techniques(1.4MB/38 sec. QuickTime movie)
But some observers, including a member of the group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, say it's sick.
"What are we trying to do, are we trying to make Jeffrey Dahmer's out of our children?" Alex Pachecco asks rhetorically.
But some of the children say it's making future investigators.
"I want to be a deputy coroner," says one boy as he peered through lab glasses.
Meantime, who was responsible for these seeming serial murders?
It's not clear, but most of the furniture and props appear to belong to one particular woman widely known as Barbie.
But wait, she may have an alibi: She said she was out with Ken that night.
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