2 Cold Case Murders From 1980s Solved With Genetic Genealogy


20 years-old chilly case murders in California have been solved via a novel investigative software of genetic pedigree, officers introduced.

Backyard Grove Deputy Police Chief Amir El Farra mentioned the primary sufferer was 23-year-old Shannon Rose Lloyd, who was sexually assaulted and strangled to loss of life in a Backyard Grove bed room in Might 1987.

Two years later, 27-year-old Reni Cuevas was murdered, he mentioned.

Shannon Lloyd and Renee Cuevas are pictured in photos launched by the Backyard Grove Police Division by way of Fb. A collaborative effort between California’s Orange County District Lawyer Todd Spitzer, the Investigative Genetic Family tree (IGG) Unit and the Orange County Sheriff’s Division helped resolve three chilly case homicides over the previous twelve months.

Backyard Grove Police Division/Fb

In 2003, police decided that the identical particular person had dedicated each crimes and that his DNA was submitted to the legislation enforcement database CODIS. Al Farra mentioned no suspects had been recognized.

Then final yr, officers turned to genetic family tree, which makes use of the DNA of an unidentified suspect, to hint his household tree, El Farra mentioned.

Genetic pedigree made headlines in 2018 when it was used to seek out the Golden State killer. Genetic family tree leaves an unknown suspect’s DNA on the crime scene and identifies it utilizing relations who voluntarily submit DNA samples to a DNA database. Police can construct a really massive household tree in the event that they solely use databases like CODIS.

The genetic pedigree recognized Reuben Smith, who lived in Orange County within the Eighties, as a potential suspect, El Farra mentioned.

In 1998, a decade after the Orange County murders, Smith was arrested in Las Vegas for sexually assaulting and making an attempt to kill a girl, police mentioned.

The Las Vegas prices have been later dismissed however a DNA pattern was taken on the time of his arrest. Officers mentioned that pattern was used to match DNA to Smith’s DNA on the Lloyd and Cuevas homicide scenes.

Police mentioned Smith died by suicide in 1999.

“The justice to which each sufferer deserves was hidden within the DNA, however with advances in IgG [investigative genetic genealogy] “Mixed know-how with the tireless dedication of generations of detectives and gifted prosecutors and forensic scientists within the District Lawyer’s Workplace, we now know who killed Renee and Shannon,” Orange County District Lawyer Todd Spitzer mentioned in a press release.



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