Category Archives: Database

Texas Senate approves DNA collection on violent arrests

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Wednesday night, the Senate passed House Bill 1399, a bill allowing law enforcement to collect DNA samples of people they arrest for violent crimes like murder, rape, and assault.

Duluth Police: All backlog sexual assault kits tested, investigations ongoing

DULUTH, MN– Around this time last year, the Duluth Police Department was in over their heads.
Duluth was being called the worst city in the state when it came to efficiently testing sexual assault kits with hundreds of kits, some dating back to 1993.
Now, more than a year later, the department has submitted all of its kits and we’re learning the results of the testing.

Woman accused in death of newborn granted pretrial release

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — A South Dakota woman charged with murder in the death of her newborn who was abandoned in a ditch 38 years ago has been released from jail.
Theresa Bentaas, 57, has been in the Minnehaha County Jail since her arrest March 8. Investigators said they used advances in DNA evidence and genealogy sites to determine she was the mother of the infant, called Baby Andrew, whose body was found wrapped in a blanket in a cornfield ditch in Sioux Falls in February 1981.

DNA database opts a million people out from police searches

A major DNA database that has been pivotal in solving US cold crime cases has blocked law enforcement access to the profiles of a million people, in a setback for investigators and a victory for campaigners.

Researchers seek 25,000 DNA samples for Las Vegas population study

LAS VEGAS (FOX5) – Genetic testing is one of the hottest health trends. The Healthy Nevada Project said it is looking for 25,000 people from Clark County to hand over their DNA.

New DNA evidence solves 1982 cold case killing at Lake Tahoe

At a news conference in Reno on Tuesday, sheriff’s detectives, forensic scientists, and genealogists described a remarkable series of challenges they faced in piecing together evidence and tracing the extended family trees of hundreds of individuals based on DNA run through an online genealogy databased called GEDMatch.

5 years after rape kit backlog controversy, Salt Lake police celebrate ‘huge strides’

SALT LAKE CITY — Nearly five years have gone by since the state of Utah and Salt Lake City made headlines for a backlog of hundreds of untested rape kits.
Now, after laws were passed at the state and city level to address the backlog, Salt Lake police are celebrating a cultural shift in how sexual assault reports are treated — and that their work has resulted in the identification of more than 100 suspects from the backlog.

DNA Detectives: Scientists combining forensics with genealogy break ‘unsolvable’ cases

(InvestigateTV) – Thanks to a breakthrough in how DNA is used, more than 1,000 collective years worth of cold cases across the U.S. have been solved in just the last nine months.
Police are teaming up with genealogists to track killers through their blood lines.

Sex assault kit bill aims to end fear of victim-blaming, prevent case backlog

MADISON, Wis. (WBAY) State legislators want new laws in Wisconsin to protect victims of sexual assault and ensure there’s never another backlog of untested rape kits.
Sexual assault kit testing was one of former state attorney general Brad Schimel’s big initiatives, pushing to have all untested kits submitted to a crime lab, then having the DNA of the offender entered into national DNA databases.

MD Hits DNA Milestone

Maryland has now recorded its 7000th positive hit on its DNA database.
State Police say the hit involved a case out of Charles County. It was part of a 2003 rape case.

Adoption and Sperm and Egg Donations Are No Longer Anonymous

For over a century parents had the option of placing a child for adoption anonymously – meaning that the child and adoptive family had little or no information about the biological parents, and few, if any, means to contact each other in the future. But the advent of widespread direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing and the creation of ‘family matching’ databases has forever torn off the seal of confidential adoptions.

DNA Helps Uncover Suspect Behind 1970s South Lake Tahoe Murder Cases

El Dorado County DA Vern Pierson said their two families were “frozen in time,” suffering for years with no arrests, no suspects and no information — until now.
“It wouldn’t have happened without this technology,” Gaines said.

Inside Maine crime lab that helped catch suspected Alaska cold case killer

AUGUSTA, Maine —The Maine State Crime Lab played a critical role in the recent arrest of a Maine man in connection with a 26-year-old cold case killing in Alaska.
The lab processed a cheek swab from Steve Downs and uploaded the results to a state and federal database known as the Combined DNA Index System.

Kew Gardens scientists test DNA of wood in fight against illegal logging

Interpol estimates that illegal logging is worth between £23 billion and £76 billion annually, with up to 30 per cent of all internationally traded timber thought to be illegally sourced.

What Is Life? UT Researchers Are Building A Database To Describe It.

Their massive database of DNA “patterns” will eventually help scientists better identify life on other planets.