Prince George’s will use DNA registries to solve cold cases through new DOJ grant

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The funding could help investigators reopen as many as 60 cold cases over the next three years, Prince George’s prosecutors and police said at a news conference Thursday.“This is just another area where we’re going to make a big difference in Prince George’s County,” Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy said.There are more than 600 cases of serious and violent crimes in the county in which DNA was collected from the scene but the sample did not generate a match in the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System, often referred to as CODIS.The leads ran out, and the cases went cold.But with this new funding, the county’s cold case task force will be able to spend thousands of dollars reprocessing those DNA samples against data from websites where users try to learn more about their family trees. Under the grant guidelines, the state’s attorney’s office and the police department can reopen cold cases for homicides or sexual assaults that are at least three years old. Authorities have 120 homicides and 360 crimes of sexual violence to select from, officials said at the news conference.Bob Dean, the assistant state’s attorney embedded with the police department’s cold case unit, said their task force is already working to identify viable cases to reopen. The team, he said, is evaluating whether the DNA samples are sufficient, whether the DNA sample is significant from an evidence perspective and if witnesses to the crime …

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