FAIRFIELD, Ohio, Nov. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — DNA Diagnostics Center, Inc. (“DDC”), part of the global network of Eurofins companies, announces that Eric Brunner, a Canton, OH man who was convicted of rape and attempted rape of two women in 1996, has been exonerated based on key DNA analysis performed by DDC’s Forensics Department in conjunction with the Ohio Innocence Project (OIP). Mr. Brunner served 13 years in prison before he was released on parole in 2009.
After Mr. Brunner’s release, the OIP worked to overturn the conviction due to the limitations and stigmatization that Mr. Brunner experienced from the conviction and sexual offender status, including opportunities for employment and housing.
In 2019, DNA testing conducted by DDC Forensics definitively concluded that Mr. Brunner’s DNA did not match the perpetrator’s DNA collected from the rape kit. Based on this evidence, the Stark County judge overturned the rape conviction. On August 30, 2022, Ohio’s Fifth District Court of Appeals also overturned the attempted rape conviction, freeing Mr. Brunner of sexual offender status.
DDC Forensics is proud to have provided the DNA testing in this case, applauds the OIP for its success in freeing Mr. Brunner from both convictions, and hopes this ruling can provide a pathway to healing for Mr. Brunner.
Brian Howe, Brunner’s attorney at the OIP, said “DDC Forensics was able to get a clean, unambiguous DNA profile from the rape kit evidence using technological advancements not previously available. Thanks to DDC’s outstanding work, Eric Brunner now has physical proof to back up his longstanding innocence claims.”
DDC has partnered with Innocence Projects throughout the U.S. on over 100 cases to analyze DNA evidence since the foundation of DDC’s Forensics Department in 2003, including fourteen exonerations.
Julie A. Heinig, PhD
Laboratory Director of Forensics, DDC
DDC is one of the most highly accredited genetic-testing laboratories in the world. The company provides comprehensive consumer and legal DNA testing services for paternity and family relationships, fertility, lifestyle, veterinary, and forensics worldwide.
Eurofins is Testing for Life. With over 61,000 staff across a network of 940 laboratories in 59 countries, Eurofins’ companies offer a portfolio of over 200,000 analytical methods.
Eurofins Shares are listed on Euronext Paris Stock Exchange.
SOURCE DNA DIAGNOSTICS CENTER, INC.