Category Archives: Forensic Industry News

Should Statutes of Limitations for Rape Be Abolished?

Across the country, time-limiting laws prevent scores of sexual assault cases from being prosecuted, in spite of persuasive evidence or a confession.

Grand jury indicts DNA profile of ‘D.C.-area hotel rapist’ for 1998-2006 assaults

WASHINGTON (WJLA) — In a groundbreaking case, a grand jury in Washington has indicted the DNA profile of a suspect wanted for a series of rapes from 1998 to 2006 in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C.
It’s the first time in D.C. that a John Doe DNA profile has been indicted, according to statements from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia and the FBI.

Sexual violence victims can wait years for India’s overtaxed crime labs

(CNN)On one hot summer night in 2016, Rani went to bed in her hut near the banks of the Yamuna River in Delhi.
Normally, she would have slept outside, where a breeze could provide some relief, but she did not feel well and had taken medicine that made her drowsy.
But this meant she didn’t notice when her 7-year old daughter, who was sleeping outside with the other children, was taken away.

Skeletons From WWII Mass Grave In Italy Identified Through Forensic DNA Testing

On March 24, 1944, Nazi soldiers slaughtered 335 Italian political prisoners and civilians in Rome, tossing them into a mass grave known as the Fosse Ardeatine. Months after the retaliatory massacre, 323 of the bodies were identified by a forensic medical team. The remaining dozen skeletons were disinterred more than 65 years later for forensic DNA testing in an attempt to identify the unknown people in this WWII mass grave.

DNA ancestry tests reveal roots — maybe

SAN FRANCISCO – Curious about their roots, consumers are spending tens of millions of dollars each year getting their DNA tested and then proclaiming they are one-quarter Irish, 22 percent Scandinavian or 14 percent American Indian.
These pie charts of ethnicity make for great water-cooler conversation. But what about the science? Experts say it is still in its infancy, can reinforce stereotypes and sometimes is flat-out wrong.

National forensic lab to be inaugurated today

The long-awaited National Forensic Laboratory will be inaugurated today, The New Times has established.
The facility, located in Kacyiru in the capital Kigali, cost about Rwf7 billion.

France puts British security at risk by blocking UK’s bid to remain part of EU criminal security system that shares DNA, vehicle and fingerprint data

France is obstructing Britain’s bid to remain in an EU security network that helps members catch foreign criminals.
The UK government wants continued access to a shared database that helped French and Belgian authorities identify the terrorists responsible for the Paris attacks in November 2015.
Ministers have said Britain’s ability to access and share vital DNA, fingerprint and vehicle data under the so-called Prum convention is ‘clearly in the national interest’.
But France led the resistance against Britain’s efforts to join a ‘Prum 2’ at a recent meeting to discuss security after Brexit.

What is CRISPR and could it be used by criminals to alter their DNA?

CRISPR is a revolutionary genetic editing technique that’s been hailed a game-changer in science.

Reno County judge allows new DNA testing of evidence in 2000 strangulation case

A Reno County judge Friday granted a motion for new DNA testing of evidence in the case of a Hutchinson man serving a life sentence in the 2000 strangulation death of his ex-wife.
District Judge Trish Rose found the request by Trevor Corbett met the requirements of the law and granted the motion filed on Corbett’s behalf by the Paul E. Wilson Project for Innocence and Postconviction Remedies at the University of Kansas School of Law.

International DNA Hit of the Year awarded to cold case team

A cold-case investigation has won the prestigious international DNA Hit of the Year award for its use of the national DNA database to bring a murderer to justice.
Op Rhodium was the investigation into the murder of 17-year-old Melanie Road in Bath in June 1984. After almost 32 years of waiting for answers, her family finally saw her killer admit his crime in 2016. He was handed a life sentence.

At Sacramento crime lab, ‘CSI’ meets real life

Jill Spriggs is showing off her highly trained staff and the expensive equipment they use to dissect evidence from crime scenes and help solve cases.

The highest-profile part of Sacramento County’s forensic sciences laboratory, however, is off limits. It’s where criminalists create DNA profiles – and where every precaution is taken to prevent contamination. The afternoon Spriggs gave a tour, Nikki Sewell was trying to extract DNA from a jacket in a robbery case and Angel Shaw was processing a rape kit. In another lab, Leslie Poole was hoping to match bullet cartridges from a series of shootings after swabbing a gun for DNA.

This week in science history: The dark lady of DNA dies

The Nobel Committee does not make posthumous prize nominations, but if it did, British chemist and researcher Rosalind Franklin, who died on April 16, 1958, is widely regarded as a deserving recipient.

DNA ties ‘killer clown’ to getaway car in 27-year-old cold case, prosecutors say

Florida investigators on Thursday released DNA evidence that they say helped lead to the arrest of a woman suspected of dressing up as a clown and fatally shooting her future husband’s then-wife 27 years ago.
Palm Beach County prosecutors said that recent forensic tests conducted by the FBI concluded that hair fibers found in a suspected getaway car could have come from Sheila Keen Warren.

Dhahi Khalfan inaugurates Emirates Forensic 2018

…Emirates Forensic is set to attract more than 2,000 visitors and participants over the next few days while also featuring the participation of 46 local and international experts, seven workshops, 20 exhibitors and more than 30 scientific lectures and 70 summaries. In addition, the conference is playing host to select chairs of world organisations of forensic science and criminology in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia, Austria and other countries of the world, as well as scientists from the GCC countries and experts from the UAE in the criminal field…

National group praises signing of DNA bill

Governor Justice signed the bill last week. The bill allows the West Virginia State Police to contract with the Marshall University Forensic Science Center to process lab work related to the testing of offender samples for the Combined DNA Index System, and DNA testing in criminal paternity cases, criminal casework and identification of human remains.
It also sets parameters in which law enforcement and correctional officers can use reasonable force to obtain DNA samples and allows for collection of mouth swabs.