Local News

N.C. DNA database yields record number of matches

Posted November 10, 2010 1:08 p.m. EST
Updated November 10, 2010 1:18 p.m. EST

— Investigators this year have matched a record number of DNA samples collected from crime scenes to profiles in the state’s DNA database.

As of Oct. 31, 379 people have been linked to homicides, rapes and other crimes across the state– more than 100 more hits than in all of 2009 – North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper said Wednesday.

The database, which is part of a national DNA database, contains more than 200,000 samples and includes profiles from all convicted North Carolina felons since 2003. It has helped solve more than 1,800 cases.

The number of profiles will continue to grow.

Legislation that takes effect in February will allow law enforcement officials to take DNA samples from suspects facing certain felony charges, specifically violent and sex-related crimes.

Cooper has projected that, in the first year of the law being in place, authorities could solve as many as 100 cold cases.

Meanwhile, State Bureau of Investigation’s Director Greg McLeod has ordered an outside review of the SBI’s DNA work.

The move comes following a report this year that found serious flaws in the way SBI crime lab agents reported blood samples in hundreds of cases, including three that ended in executions.

The SBI says previous audits over the past 20 years have found the DNA analysis meets national standards set by the FBI, but the outside audit is part of an overall evaluation of all the SBI crime lab’s practices