Final presentation of students at the The Hague Criminal Investigation Department

Today the students presented their findings from two cold cases they investigated to the The Hague Criminal Investigation Department, cold cases & missing persons team. For reasons of confidentiality, we cannot share substantive information about individual cases or results. We can explain what the students do. Naturally, they unleash their creative, gifted analysis capabilities on the research file. But there is another component to it that is perhaps even more important.

The Netherlands has various investigative teams that deal with cold cases. Due to cutbacks, these teams often face insufficient money, FTEs and time. Yet there are many, many cold cases. We have great admiration for the passion, empathy and research qualities of these teams. The students try to help the police conduct an investigation more efficiently. Suppose a murder case produces an average of 20 scenarios of what could have happened. Given that a criminal investigation team has insufficient time, money and people, which scenarios are given priority? To answer this question, the students use Bayesian statistics. This makes it possible to determine which scenarios have the greatest chance of finding a perpetrator.

The presentations went well and afterwards there is of course pizza!

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