This program funds States and units of local government with existing crime laboratories that conduct DNA analysis to process, record, screen, and analyze forensic DNA and/or DNA database samples, and to increase the capacity of public forensic DNA and DNA database laboratories to process more DNA samples, thereby helping to reduce the number of forensic DNA and DNA database samples awaiting analysis.
Daily Archives: April 17, 2014
NIJ seeks proposals for funding for the FY 2014 DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction Program
Publishing a draft of the Neandertal genome (1) opened up whole new avenues to understanding the ancestry of modern humans. No longer constrained to comparing the morphology of fossilized remains, scientists can now delve into the genetic differences between anatomically modern humans and our close relative Homo neanderthalensis. From these genetic studies, we are learning some amazing things about the evolution of Homo sapiens.
SALT LAKE CITY — Beginning June 1, the public will be able to see the progress of rape kit processing in Salt Lake City as part of an effort to improve transparency and make systemic improvements.
Representatives from the Salt Lake Police Department, state crime lab and Salt Lake County District Attorney’s Office presented the plan and their commitment to improve the process at a news conference Wednesday.
Efforts to address the backlog of 625 unprocessed rape kits in the Salt Lake City area have been in the works for several months. The announcement of the plan wasn’t simply a response to the heated Salt Lake City Council meeting on Tuesday, said Salt Lake Police Chief Chris Burbank.
DNA analysis of the oldest royal bones in England has begun at Winchester Cathedral.
Experts could finally be on the verge of resolving an internationally-significant mystery that has perplexed historians for centuries.
A man charged with brutally raping two women in 2004 is facing what should be slam-dunk DNA evidence, which normally should definitively prove whether he did it. But prosecutors have one problem.
The suspect, Dwayne McNair, has an identical twin brother, Dwight.
Under New Zealand law, the police can take DNA from people they plan to charge and match it against samples from unsolved crimes.
Collections of DNA were expanded by the government in 2009 which said it was critical for fighting crime.
MEMPHIS, Tennessee — Memphis is making progress in testing its backlog of 12,000 rape kits, including the filing of 14 indictments against sexual-assault suspects, but more work is needed to reduce the number of kits that sat ignored since the 1980s, officials said Wednesday.
Experts say that only a small fraction of rapes are reported and that the prosecution rate in those cases is dismally small — in Salt Lake County it’s 6 percent. In many instances of alleged sex assault, forensic evidence gathered from the victim is not even analyzed.
Such evidence — including semen and saliva that can provide DNA — is collected by specially trained nurses in what is called a Code R kit, or rape kit. The evidence could be key to a conviction.
TAMPA, Fla. — A researcher from the University of South Florida said Tuesday that a team of forensic experts is using DNA, skeletal analysis and digital X-rays to identify the remains from a former reform school on the Panhandle.
So far, 430 victims have been found in the Tomasica grave, a vast pit 10 meters (about 30 feet) deep and covering 5,000 square meters (54,000 square feet). The mass grave contains victims of Bosnian Serb military units who killed Muslim Bosniaks and Roman Catholic Croats in hopes of creating an ethnically pure region.