Washington, District of Columbia 2021-06-18 21:20:33 –
DNA analysis has been around for decades and is an important tool for resolving violent crimes, but until recently it was nearly impossible to collect DNA evidence left on the scene. It was transformed by a process developed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
The day after Christmas 2019, two men set foot in Denny’s, Manassas, Virginia, and announced a robbery. They wore masks and demanded that everyone get to the floor.
One customer was shot dead and injured. When they left the restaurant, they shot dead and Killed the delivery driver The person who had the door when they were short.
Within days, police detained the two, thanks to a compassionate ATF agent who collected shell casings on-site and tested for DNA. The agent knew that the lab had completed a process that didn’t exist before.
“DNA and copper don’t harmonize well, so I had to understand why it decomposed so quickly, and when I asked one of the lab chemists who was investigating explosives, they said “It’s a simple reaction that’s happening,” said Greg Zarnopis, deputy director of the ATF Science and Technology Agency.
The lab has come up with an extract that can actually increase the amount of DNA recovered from the casing.
One of the challenges of ATF was to be able to keep the shell casing off the ground while preserving the DNA. So they came up with the device. It’s basically a plastic capsule that comes in two parts. One scoops up the casing and the other protects the casing to allow air to circulate.
“I don’t want to put it in an airtight container because it gets damp and all kinds of DNA are damp,” says Czarnopys.
According to Czarnopys, the lab has completed the process by which the examiner can extract the DNA and bring it into the National DNA Databank within a few days.
“Our goal is to transfer this technology to state and local laboratories so that we can fill in the gaps that we can’t fill,” says Czarnopys.
The collector is intended for one-time use and will soon be mass-produced for laboratories nationwide.
DC’s Criminology Institute did not use this process until Jennifer Smith resigned last month.
Two men arrested for murder in Denny’s have pleaded not guilty and are awaiting trial in Prince William County.
ATF Device Helps Analyze Shell Casings for DNA – NBC4 Washington Source link ATF Device Helps Analyze Shell Casings for DNA – NBC4 Washington