Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Is Partial Match DNA Analysis Worthwhile?

I'm a crime analyst and not a crime scene investigator but even so, I thought this was an interesting read. The New York Times had a piece that looked at partial match DNA technology to search for suspects in offenses where DNA based evidence had been discovered.
In the case of the Queens robbery in 2010, detectives could not request a family search be performed; they were merely informed that a DNA sample partially matched a profile in the database. Detectives chose to pursue the potential lead, developing a family tree from the DNA sample; that led them to secretly securing a genetic sample from the father of a convict. But after tests ruled him out, they concluded the robber in Queens had no blood connection to the family under scrutiny, said Phil T. Pulaski, the chief of detectives, at a public hearing.
Via The New York Times 
At first glance this seems kind of Orwellian  But, if the evidence can also be used to exclude suspects then maybe it's not so bad after all. What do you think?

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