Third CSI Portsmouth sees writers and police give clues on crime fiction

CSI PORTSMOUTH Crime fiction reader Sue Bishop watches as forensic students (left), Vienna Ayling, and Abbeygail Standen man a crime re-enactment scene. Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (123573-2)
CSI PORTSMOUTH Crime fiction reader Sue Bishop watches as forensic students (left), Vienna Ayling, and Abbeygail Standen man a crime re-enactment scene. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (123573-2)
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CRIME fiction and reality met in one place as members of the public got to question authors and detectives.

The third CSI Portsmouth was held at the John Pounds Centre, in Queen Street, Portsea as part of the city’s BookFest.

Organised by crime writer Pauline Rowson, around 150 people attended the event.

Audience members got a chance to ask Pauline and fellow authors Stephen Booth and Matt Hilton questions about their writing.

Pauline said: ‘I had the idea to bring fiction and fact together.

‘We had a fantastic response and had 150 people come to the morning session and around 130 people for the afternoon.

‘As a writer I talk to police to get a better understanding of crime.

‘This session allowed people to ask their own questions.’

Nick Stilwell, 45, travelled from Alton.

He said: ‘It was a very interesting session.

‘I like reading crime books and watching it on television.

‘For me one interesting thing to hear was how some writers won’t write about paedophiles because they don’t like it.

‘But they are aware it’s part of real life.’

Joining the panel of authors were Detective Constable Terry Fitzjohn of the arson task force at Hampshire Constabulary, crime scene manager Carolyn Lovell and fire investigator Andy Earl, of Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Det Con Fitzjohn said: ‘It was an interesting session.

‘Obviously in books and television, the process is always quicker than real life.

‘So they might get a forensic result back in a few hours, in real life that can take a few days.

‘But the audience seemed to know their stuff and asked some interesting questions.’

During an interval, people got a chance to look at a mock-up crime scene and answer questions on what they would do.

They also got the chance to look at forensic equipment.