Massacre of Children in Peru Might Have Been a Sacrifice to Stop Bad Weather

While the reasoning behind the gruesome mass murder of the boys and girls — who were only between the ages of 5 and 14 — cannot be definitively determined, the researchers now say the act was done out of desperation in response to a disastrous climatic event: El Niño.

Belgian Nanoelectronics Firm Imec Developing Solid State Nanopore Technology for DNA Analysis

Requires Registraion- SAN FRANCISCO (GenomeWeb) – Imec, a nanoelectronics and digital technology company based in Belgium, is harnessing its expertise in semiconductor manufacturing in order to move into the solid-state nanopore single-molecule sensing and DNA sequencing field.

A New Method Of DNA Testing Could Solve More Shootings

POLICE FOUND 19 spent shell casings scattered in the San Diego street where Gregory Benton was murdered on April 12, 2014. Benton and his cousin had gone to buy cigarettes, a witness later said. As they returned to a family party, two men pulled up in a car behind them. They got out, and at least one of them opened fire.
Witnesses didn’t get a good look at the men or the car, so when police sat down to review their leads, the shell casings were the best evidence they had. They sent the casings to the San Diego Police Crime Lab, which just happened to be trying out a new DNA testing technique.

Promega’s hitting the road again with all the Power to Solve.

Presenting Promega Tech Tour 2019 Workshop Series

Please join us for presentations and discussions on the latest advances in STR analysis and the forensics workflow. The workshops will feature presentations by leaders in the forensics community who will provide information and tips on maximizing success with challenging samples and improving laboratory efficiencies through workflow enhancements. The presentations will also include customer experiences and insights from using Promega products.

Register Here

Serial rapist convicted after testing of rape kit backlog

A Tucson man was convicted of raping seven women over a 12-year period after police received a grant to test rape kits and changed a “mindset” over which kits get tested.

Justices: Nebraska county owes $28M for wrongful convictions

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a rural Nebraska county’s appeal of a $28 million court judgment aimed at compensating six people wrongfully convicted of a 1985 slaying.
The justices turned away Gage County’s last-ditch effort to avoid the hefty judgment, after a federal appeals court in St. Louis found the award was justified because of egregious law enforcement conduct. In August, the county raised its local property tax levy as high as state law allows to pay off the debt — a move that could become a major drag on the local economy.

Delaware’s DOJ reviewing criminal cases involving hair evidence

Delaware’s Department of Justice is reviewing criminal cases that predate DNA evidence.
Before the FBI started analyzing the DNA in hair evidence to make criminal convictions in the year 2000, it often relied on the practice of microscopic hair comparison. That method has since been deemed highly unreliable by the National Academy of Sciences.

In Case You Missed the Webinar

No Further Questions: Preparing for Expert Witness Testimony on Probabilistic Genotyping

The rise of probabilistic genotyping has driven the need for effective ways to describe the results to judges, attorneys and juries. In this webinar, Samantha and Rachel addressed potential questions and response options typically covered in testimony around probabilistic genotyping. They also discuss testifying in admissibility hearings on probabilistic genotyping systems.
Watch on Demand

The New Weapon In The Fight Against Crime

Solving a murder or tracking down the perpetrators of sexual abuse often requires dogged police work. What if a machine could help detectives spot the vital clues they need?

The Technology 202: Consumers advocates want Washington to tackle ‘Wild West’ of DNA test kits

A consumer advocacy group leader says it’s time for Washington lawmakers to set some rules in the “Wild West” of at-home DNA testing kits.
Following a report that Family Tree DNA gave the FBI access to its vast genetic database, Sally Greenberg, the executive director of the National Consumers League, says Congress must make sure people are aware of the broad privacy implications of using these common services. Most people who buy DNA kits think they’re learning about their ancestors or relatives, Greenberg says, and they don’t know that companies often have sweeping terms of service agreements that allow them to share customer genetic data with law enforcement or other companies.

One Twin Committed the Crime — but Which One? A New DNA Test Can Finger the Culprit

A handful of criminal prosecutions have stalled because DNA tests cannot distinguish between suspects who are twins. Then scientists decided to create one.

Is DNA Left on Envelopes Fair Game for Testing?

Stray genetic material could be co-opted for secret paternity tests, celebrity DNA profiles, and other questionable uses.

‘Making a Murderer’ Subject Steven Avery Wins Right to Appeal in Wisconsin Court

“Making a Murderer” subject Steven Avery will have his case re-examined by a Wisconsin court, his lawyer announced this week.

China drafts rules on biotech after gene-editing scandal

BEIJING — China has unveiled draft regulations on gene editing and other potentially risky biomedical technologies after a Chinese scientist’s claim of helping to create gene-edited babies roiled the global science community.
Under the proposed measures released Tuesday, technology involving gene editing, gene transfer and gene regulation would be categorized as “high-risk” and managed by the health department of the State Council, China’s Cabinet.

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.