Call now for a no-charge, no-obligation case evaluation.
410-713-4465

How can genetic material be used in a criminal case?

Law enforcement investigators use a variety of tools to narrow suspects for crimes. In the case of certain crimes, such as violent crimes like murder or rape, investigators might turn to DNA evidence to determine who to charge with the crimes. In some cases, DNA evidence is used to identify victims of crimes. There are some important points everyone should know about DNA and the criminal justice system.

What kinds of DNA samples can be used?

DNA samples can come from a variety of sources. Buccal swabs, hair, fingernails and other biologic evidence contain DNA. In the case of trying to identify a person who may have committed a crime, investigators might be able to use semen samples from the crime scene or scrapings from beneath the victim's fingernails. Even evidence like fingerprints or lip prints on a glass might provide enough DNA for identification.

Is DNA always accurate?

DNA is usually accurate, but doesn't always lead to the person who committed a crime. One example of this would be if a DNA sample was collected that contained the DNA of two people, which occurs if the person has recently received a blood transfusion. Even in that case, the DNA evidence might lead to the person who may have committed the crime because the person's DNA is likely to appear predominate over the DNA of the donor.

The possibilities for using DNA to help identify who may have committed a crime or to rule people out are almost endless. Every cell in the body has DNA and almost all crime scenes contain some DNA evidence. Fighting against DNA evidence is likely to be difficult, so experienced defense representation is vital.

Source: National Institute of Justice, "DNA Evidence Basics: Types of Samples Suitable for DNA Testing," accessed April. 24, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Get In Touch

Contact Us To Discuss Your Options

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Salisbury Office
208 Calvert Street
P.O. Box 33
Salisbury, MD 21801

Toll Free: 866-242-3785
Phone: 410-713-4465
Salisbury Law Office Map

Ocean City Office
5700 Coastal Highway
Suite 305
Ocean City, MD 21842

Map & Directions

We offer free consultations for criminal cases, And we accept multiple payment methods, including MasterCard, Visa and Discover.

Spanish-language translation services are available / Servicios del intérprete disponibles.