DNA database

14 Stories

A Distant Cousin's DNA Test Could Lead FBI to You

FBI can trace more than half of Americans via a third cousin's DNA

(Newser) - Federal investigators looking to solve crimes can find a DNA match for a relative as close as a third cousin (connected by a great-great grandparent) to more than half of Americans by accessing genealogy databases. Yaniv Erlich, chief science officer at DNA testing company MyHeritage, came to that conclusion after... More »

Cops Crack Old Double Murder by Collecting Suspect's Cup

Investigators use DNA to press charges in 1987 case

(Newser) - Detectives are using a new forensic tool to chase down murderers: DNA data mining, reports the New York Times . This week, Snohomish County police announced the arrest of William Earl Talbott, 55, in the 1987 murders of Canadians Jay Cook, 20, and Tanya Van Cuylenborg, 18. The Washington investigators used... More »

Vial of Ted Bundy's Blood Could Tie Him to Cold Cases

33-year-old vial of blood gave investigators a full DNA profile of serial killer

(Newser) - A newly found 33-year-old vial of blood belonging to Ted Bundy will be used to give the infamous serial killer a full DNA profile, reports the AP . Once it is added to the FBI's national database, investigators hope the profile will help them link Bundy to several long-unsolved crimes.... More »

Cops Narrowly Missed 'Grim Sleeper' Twice

Missed chance on DNA, staked out wrong house,

(Newser) - The alleged serial killer known as the Grim Sleeper could have been stopped two years earlier if the police had collected his DNA. Lonnie David Franklin should have been added to a DNA database under a 2004 law called Proposition 69, finds the LA Times . He wasn't—apparently because it... More »

FBI to Vastly Enlarge DNA Database by Swabbing Suspects

(Newser) - Following the lead of Britain and 15 US states, the FBI plans to swab suspects for DNA upon arrest—a move expected to massively expand the feds' genetic database and spark criticism from civil rights advocates, the New York Times reports. But law enforcement officials praise the practice and compare... More »

Court: UK's DNA Database Violates Privacy Rights

(Newser) - A European human-rights court has ruled that Britain has gotten a little too Big Brotherish in its effort to build a DNA database of its citizens. The court ruled that the UK has no right to keep DNA evidence from criminal suspects who are later cleared, the Guardian reports. The... More »

LAPD Hunts Resurfaced Serial Killer

'Grim Sleeper' linked to 11 slayings was off cop radar for over a decade

(Newser) - The LAPD is back on the trail of a serial killer linked to at least 11 murders over 23 years, the Los Angeles Times reports. The killer shot dead eight young women he had sexually abused and a man in the mid-1980s—then apparently went dormant for 13 years before... More »

NY Sushi Sleuths Uncover Fishy Tricks

Simple DNA test reveals fish sellers' bait-and-switch

(Newser) - Two New York City high school students used DNA testing to uncover a bait-and-switch scam in local restaurants and fish markets, the New York Times reports. Fish being sold as prized white tuna turned out to be the much more common—and cheaper—Mozambique tilapia, while red snapper proved to... More »

DNA Used to Nab Criminal Kin

But questions arise over genetic privacy of innocent relatives

(Newser) - Law-enforcement agencies are using DNA of family members—often without their consent—to identify and convict criminals, the Washington Post reports. Privacy advocates object that it turns family members into unwitting informants, and subjects innocent relatives to “lifelong genetic surveillance” because someone in their family committed a crime. But... More »

US Plans to Widen DNA Database

Will take samples from illegal immigrants, felony arrestees

(Newser) - The US plans to significantly widen its law-enforcement database by taking DNA samples from illegal immigrants picked up by federal authorities and from all people arrested for federal offenses, the Washington Post reports. The feds currently collect genetic information only from those convicted of federal crimes. The expanded policy follows... More »

Police Seek Broader DNA Database

US wants to follow UK's lead and track down suspects' relatives

(Newser) - US law enforcement currently catalogs 5.6 million DNA profiles, about 2% of Americans, but hopes to expand that and the scope of their searches, the Wall Street Journal reports. A bigger database would allow "familial searches"—looking for near matches of a suspect's brother or sister, for... More »

Genealogy Site Wants to Swab Your Cheek

New service will allow members to submit DNA samples for comparison

(Newser) - Now even dead ancestors can join the social networking craze. Their descendants, today’s consumers, can submit cheek swabs to genetics company GeneTree, which compares the DNA to its database and creates an interactive digital family tree. Users can post videos, photos, and link up with other members of their... More »

British Judge Wants Everyone in DNA Database

Calls current system for collecting DNA data "indefensible"

(Newser) - Everyone in the UK—and anyone who dares to visit—should be in Britain's national DNA database, a top British judge declared in a BBC interview today, causing an uproar among rights activists. Lord Justice Stephen Sedley called the country's current DNA database—the largest in the world—"indefensible,... More »

Buckle Up, Britons, or Submit DNA

New rules would let police take samples from scofflaws

(Newser) - Britain may give police the authority to take DNA samples from anyone stopped for a minor crime, such as littering, speeding or not wearing a seat belt, the Guardian reports. And they'll be able to do so right on the street—without going to the police station, if the Home... More »

14 Stories