An ABC News article recently featured an example of forensic DNA testing. A discarded bloody cotton swab used by a suspect in the case, a part-time boxer, was picked up by an FBI agent after a boxing match. DNA analysis on the swab tied it to the mask used by one of the boxers that had been collected as evidence, as well as DNA found on the steering wheel of the getaway vehicle.
The discovery was the result of a series of observations made by the FBI agent, who went through social networks and found a connection between a suspect already in custody and the boxer.
DNA can be collected from a variety of materials. Chromosomal DNA can be recovered from blood stains and from surfaces where skin cells are often sloughed off due to constant contact–such as a steering wheel and personal items including toothbrushes and combs. It’s essential that proper procedures, including chain of custody, is followed when collecting such items for use in a legal case.
For more information about DDC’s forensic DNA testing services, visit www.forensicdnacenter.com or call 1-800-406-1940.