Recent cases where DNA evidence was used.
Case study one
In 1992, a woman was dragged off the street in Stotfold, Bedfordshire, and raped at knife point by a man who threatened to slit her throat. DNA evidence was recovered from the crime scene and added to the National DNA Database but did not match to any individual on the database.
In 2012, Daniel Borger was arrested for a minor drugs offence, DNA sampled and added to the DNA database. His DNA matched the DNA found at the crime scene 20 years previously, identifying him as the rapist. Daniel Borger later admitted the offence and in February 2013, was jailed for seven and a half years for the crime.
Find out more on the Bedfordshire News website.
Case study two
In August 2012, a woman took a taxi home from central London with a friend. When the friend got out to ask for directions, the taxi driver drove off, locking the woman inside the car. He then raped her.
The police found the attacker’s DNA on the victim, and searched the DNA profile against the National DNA Database. The DNA profile matched a man already on the database – Ellie Feghaly. Mr Feghaly was found to have been operating as an unlicensed minicab driver and was arrested a few days after the attack and charged with rape. In February 2013 he was found guilty of the offence and sentenced to nine years in prison.
Find out more on the Daily Mail website.
Case study three
In 1981 a woman was raped at knifepoint as she walked through a park in Basingstoke in broad daylight. No one was caught for the offence at the time. Years later, Hampshire Police sent the evidence collected at the crime scene to be re-examined using modern forensic techniques. Traces of DNA left behind by the attacker were found, and searched against the National DNA Database, which identified Robert Gordon. In February 2013 Robert Gordon was found guilty of rape and sentenced to nine years in prison.
Find out more on the Basingstoke Gazette website.
Case study four
In June 2011 an intruder entered a house in Ipswich and subjected the sole female occupant to a serious sexual assault. During the ordeal, the woman managed to scratch her attacker, leaving his DNA under her fingernails. The DNA was searched against the National DNA Database but did not match to anyone on the database. Due to the severity of the crime, a specialist search technique was employed, to look for individuals on the database with close familial links to the offender. This search identified Hilland Matthews as a possible suspect. He was arrested in 2012, and his DNA sample taken which produced a direct match with the DNA found under the victim’s fingernails. In February 2013, Hilland Matthews was jailed for nine years for the attack.
Find out more on the BBC news website.
Case study five
In July 2011, four armed men confronted security guards delivering cash to an Asda supermarket in Liverpool and stole £92,000 in cash. As the robbers drove off in their stolen get away vehicle, they dropped a cash box. One of the robbers reached to retrieve it and in the process his watch was knocked off. A member of the public retrieved the watch and handed it in to police. Forensic analysis found the robber’s DNA on the watch. The DNA profile was searched against the National DNA Database and identified Sam Millar.
Sam Millar pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit robbery and in March 2013 was sentenced to 8 years in prison. One of his accomplices was also caught and sentenced to 11 years.
Find out more on the Liverpool Echo website.