Solving Crime Through Genealogy

The DNA that is in the systems that police used is a system called CODIS, the Combined DNA Index System. Now, there’s actually three levels for that. There is a local state and national level. So, if someone is arrested and depending on what state they’re in, their DNA is tested. And I guess depending on which level crime they commit would depend on where that DNA actually ends up. So, just because someone is arrested in a state and you look for their DNA, it may not actually be in that particular area that you’re looking for. Now, the way that DNA works is there’s about 20 markers that are tested when they test DNA for criminals. That DNA is matched. They look for an exact match when they look for that DNA.
If you’re a criminal and you haven’t yet committed a crime, say a rapist, your DNA is not going to be in that system. And I would think that most rapists or serious criminals are pretty smart. Their DNA is not going to already be in that system. Some states now allow what’s called familial DNA where you can actually run that DNA for a family match, a parent, a child, a sibling. That gives law enforcement one more avenue to help solve crimes. That’s actually what was used in the baby generate case with the Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Department. They were able to find a sibling match to the baby’s DNA.
Now, the next step would be genetic genealogy. If there’s no DNA in the police system, you can actually run either that unidentified person or that criminal’s DNA through a process that we use to upload to GEDmatch and family tree, and it will actually help us to find shared ancestors and DNA matches, and build family trees just like we do adoptees to find the criminals. That’s a very new tool for law enforcement to be able to use, and I’m very excited about the years to come and how that’s going to affect law enforcement.

The Gene Hunter Coming 2020!

Republic Books is proud to announce the upcoming release of the Gene Hunter by Shera LaPoint, a native of South Louisiana with deep Cajun roots. Shera turned to the website to learn more about her family tree after the death of her grandfather, and discovered a life-changing new passion. 

Investigative Genetic Genealogy

One of the most fascinating things to me that have happened in the last few years is the use of DNA in what’s called Investigative Genetic Genealogy. It is now possible and it is being used to solve major crimes. And one of the amazing stats that I came across was the fact that there are over 

Genealogical Ghost Hunt: Princess Blue

A very interesting case that I’m working is an unidentified body that is known as Princess Blue. She was found in 1990 on the side of a road. A gentleman stopped to relieve himself, and found the bones of this young woman on the side of the road near Manvel, Texas.