At the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Forensics Lab in Oregon, researchers are building a chemical database of trees threatened by illegal harvesting.
Jun 24 2022
This Week in Forensic Science
No one has hours to scour the papers to keep up with the latest news, so we’ve curated the top news stories in the field of Forensic Science for this week. Here’s what you need to know to get out the door!
DNA Helps Identify 2 Cold Case Victims from 1977, 2009 in Snohomish County (KING5 – 6/16/2022)
The Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) announced Thursday that DNA has helped identify a John Doe and a Jane Doe at the center of two separate cold cases in the county.
Othram, Inc., a Houston, Texas-based lab, helped identify the remains of Blaine Has Tricks, whose body was found in a landfill in 1977, and Alice Lou Williams, who went missing in 1981, SCSO said.
Washington Obtains Lawfully Owed DNA from 102 More Felons (KPVI6 – 6/20/2022)
More than 100 additional DNA profiles of convicted felons have been obtained by the Washington attorney general’s office through the Lawfully Owed DNA project.
Together with previously reported DNA profiles collected, the state has now obtained genetic data on 472 felons whose DNA is required by law to be in the federal database.
That should assist law enforcement in either confirming or clearing criminal suspects.
Investigator: DNA Could Identify 2 Tulsa Massacre Victims (ABC News – 6/22/2022)
Investigators seeking to identify victims of the Tulsa Race Massacre have found enough usable DNA for testing on two of the 14 sets of remains removed from a local cemetery a year ago, a forensic scientist said Wednesday.
Danny Hellwig with Intermountain Forensics in Salt Lake City, which is examining the remains, told The Associated Press that it’s a promising step toward identifying the people whose remains were removed from Oaklawn Cemetery.
“We have two (sets) that we’re very excited about,” Hellwig said. “It doesn’t guarantee us a result, but it gives us hope” for learning the names.
The key, Hellwig said, is having descendants of those individuals provide DNA to a database so a match can be made when DNA sequencing is complete.
The sequencing is expected to begin in July or August, Hellwig said. A match to a family member could be made within days if the descendant is in Intermountain Forensics’ DNA database.
The Forensic Scientists Fighting Timber Theft (The Wall Street Journal – 6/23/2022)
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