May 29, 2022

True Crime Behind the Headlines at the Essex Library

True Crime is a topic that never gets old, explored endlessly by novelists, headline writers, and Hollywood. Whether you’re a CSI fan, a Cold Case addict, or can’t wait for this month’s James Patterson novel – the Essex Library’s fascinating winter series of lectures on True Crime by true crime fighters promises to be more entertaining than any fiction. Come and hear how the real detectives, forensic pathologists, Mob insiders, FBI agents, anti-trafficking and anti-terrorism experts fight the bad guys in the real world – including a special appearance by the legendary forensic scientist, Dr. Henry Lee.                                                                            

Think the Mob’s a Hollywood myth? Think again! The Mafia, its beginnings in Italy, migration to the USA, and recent major cases, including the Megale case in Connecticut, will be the topic Thursday, Jan. 13 at 7 p.m., as the Essex Library presents FBI Agent John Sereno, a career expert on the topic of the real Mafia, not the Sopranos version. Agent Sereno has been with the Bureau for 23 years, in both Connecticut and New York, working mostly in Organized Crime and Narcotics.                                    

Dr. Henry Lee will speak at Essex Town Hall on January 26

Dr. Henry C. Lee, one of the world’s foremost forensic scientists, and a prominent player in many of the most challenging cases of the last 40 years, will speak at Essex Town Hall on Wednesday, Jan. 26 at 7 p.m.  Dr. Lee has worked with law enforcement agencies in helping to solve more than 6000 cases. Dr. Lee’s testimony figured prominently in the O. J. Simpson trial, and in convictions of the “Woodchipper” murderer, and he has assisted local and state police in their investigations of other famous crimes, such as the murder of Jon Benet Ramsey in Boulder, Colorado, the 1993 suicide of White House Counsel Vincent Foster, and the reinvestigation of the Kennedy assassination. Dr. Lee is currently the Chief Emeritus for the Scientific Services and was the Commissioner of Public Safety for the State of Connecticut for over two years and has served as that state’s Chief Criminalist from 1979 to 2000. A donation of $5 per person will be requested for this program.        

You’ve seen their success stories splashed across the front page — but how does a real Cold Case cop crack a murder when the killer’s trail is long gone? Connecticut’s Violent Crimes Bureau/ Cold Case Unit  Supervisory Inspector Michael Sullivan will share his experiences with the Cold Case Unit on Thursday, Jan. 27 at the Essex Library, revealing their amazing track record and surprising methods. A former Police Captain from the City of New Britain Police Department, Inspector Sullivan did 20 years there with 18 of those years being in the Criminal Investigations Division, and has been an Inspector for 7 years, the last 2 of which have been in the Cold Case Unit.

Ever wondered how the FBI builds a real-life case against a complex criminal enterprise? Retired Special Agent Art Meister has forty years of law enforcement experience, twenty-four of them with the Bureau, where one of his specialties was Enterprise Investigation. During his career with the Bureau, he rose to be the Head of the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime in Quantico, Virginia, and was also head of VICAP ( Violent Criminal Apprehension Program), the national behavior-based computer program that helps law enforcement to track and identify serial offenders across the county., You’ll hear fascinating insider insights and case histories about some of the FBI’s biggest busts on Thursday, Feb. 3 at 7 p.m., at the Essex Library.

The scourge of slavery is very much alive, in this country and across the globe. The modern-day slave is likely to be a woman or child, impressed into forced labor as a sex worker.

Frank N. Barnaba, President of the Barnaba Institute, has worked tirelessly to remove women and children from the devastating world of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. Mr. Barnaba founded the Paul & Lisa Program, based in Connecticut, in 1980 and is well known for his efforts in recovering runaway and missing children, often working with federal and local law enforcement agencies. Throughout his career, Mr. Barnaba has lectured at national conferences on sexual exploitation and human trafficking including the White House, the Helsinki Commission and the Mid-Term Review for the Third World Congress. On Thursday, Feb., 10 at 7 p.m., he’ll speak at the Essex Library about his organization’s efforts to end this hideous crime against humanity, the cases he’s been involved with, and his ongoing fight to bring freedom to trafficking’s powerless victims.

We’ve all seen the body scanners and pat-downs that are the new norm in air travel security. But what else are the airlines doing to keep us safe, and just how well do these invasive new measures really work? Airline pilot and professional aviation security consultant Captain Tom Walsh advises airlines on how to stop the bad guys – what works and what doesn’t – and will tell us where the ongoing, ever-changing fight against terrorism from the skies is going next, at the Essex Library on Thursday, Feb. 17 at 7 p.m. Capt. Walsh has over 35 years experience in the field of aviation, is a former USMC Fighter/Attack pilot, and has been employed by Delta Airlines since 1987.  Walsh is also an internationally recognized expert on aviation security and counterterrorism and serves as a consultant on aviation and aviation security projects for the US Government and private firms.  The Senior Aviation Security Consultant for a Washington based firm specializing in risk management, he is currently assisting the Government in a detailed study of the vulnerabilities in the global and US aviation system.

Please call the Essex Library today at 860-767-1560, to reserve your spot for any or all of these programs, as they will fill up fast and space is limited. Fiction will never seem the same!