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Cold Case DNA update

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Signups flooded into DNA site AFTER it was announced that Gedmatch was being used to track serial killers.

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/15/science/gedmatch-genealogy-cold-cases.html

 

How an Unlikely Family History Website Transformed Cold Case Investigations

Fifteen murder and sexual assault cases have been solved since April with a single genealogy website. This is how GEDmatch went from a casual side project to a revolutionary tool.

 

On April 25, the Sacramento County district attorney’s office announced that there had been a breakthrough in the case of the Golden State Killer.

Mr. Rogers saw the news while sitting in bed watching TV.

 

“I’d never even heard of the Golden State Killer before they captured this guy,” he said.

 

But when one of the newscasters mentioned “a new form of DNA technology,” he turned to his wife and asked, “Do you suppose I was involved?”

 

It seemed possible; around six months earlier, two companies involved in criminal investigations had asked for his blessing to use the site.

 

Law enforcement agencies have their own database for criminal investigations: Codis, which contains more than 16 million DNA profiles. But forensic profiles contain only a tiny fraction of the hundreds of thousands of genetic markers that genealogy sites rely on. If investigators are unable to find an exact match there, a site such as GEDmatch is better for tracking down suspects through their relatives.

 

The site’s privacy agreement had always been vague, essentially stating that its owners had no control over how any individual’s genetic or family tree data would be used. But explicitly sanctioning a law enforcement presence felt different.

 

There’s probably no way I could stop you,” he said he told Parabon, a forensic consulting firm, and the DNA Doe Project, an organization focused on identifying bodies. “But we can’t give you permission. I have to protect the site.”

Why Mr. Rogers changed his mind

 
 
Image
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Mr. Rogers, left, and Mr. Olson during a rare in-person meeting in Texas in October. Mr. Rogers calls himself the "business" side of operations and Mr. Olson calls himself the "science side." CreditScott Dalton for The New York Times

 

 

Mr. Rogers was furious when he confirmed that a third set of investigators, without first telling him, had involved GEDmatch in the Golden State Killer case. It seemed inevitable that the news would drive thousands of people off the site.

 

While giving his house tour, Mr. Rogers handed over a stack of emails from that first week. On top, an expletive-filled note accused him of violating users’ privacy. But underneath it was email after email of congratulations, including one woman’s request to make sure that her profile would be easy for criminal investigators to find. She suspected that her father, who had been in and out of mental institutions after killing her grandfather, had taken other lives.

 

Mr. Rogers and Mr. Olson hadn’t expected such an outpouring of support. Neither did they anticipate 5,000 new uploads to the site shortly after Mr. DeAngelo’s arrest — a daily record, Mr. Olson said.

 

Two weeks later, Parabon announced that it was joining forces withCeCe Moore, a genetic genealogist, to use GEDmatch to solve crimes.

 

“This simply would not be possible without the courage of John and Curtis to allow law enforcement to use this database,” said Ms. Moore, who has helped identify more than a dozen suspects in murder and sexual assault cases using the site in the past five months.

 

As praise has flowed in, both men began to relax. By May, they had tweaked the privacy agreement to explicitly mention that users’ profiles might be used in a homicide or sexual assault investigation. By September, any lingering doubts they had were gone.

 

“I have absolutely no concerns that a person’s privacy is violated, because there are so many people whose DNA helped get to a capture,” Mr. Rogers said.

 

But many observers disagree. When any one person’s DNA can lead investigators to hundreds of a suspect’s relatives, the standard model of individual consent does not hold up, said Rori Rohlfs, a professor at San Francisco State University who has studied familial searches. She finds it ironic that police in California must get approval from a judge to search criminal databases for a murder suspect’s brother, but can upload DNA to GEDmatch to identify cousins without any restrictions.

The excitement around cases that have not yet gone to trial also risks reinforcing the notion that a DNA match is proof of guilt, some researchers warn.

 

Recent developments have led numerous African-American customers to quit the site out of concern that criminal investigators might abuse the data, several genealogists said.

 

“Because so many African-Americans have been falsely accused, and because genetic testing is not a perfect science, law enforcement should not be allowed to use GEDmatch,” said Tony Burroughs, the former president of the Afro-American Genealogical and Historical Society of Chicago.

 

The exit of those users is particularly tragic, said Teresa Vega, a family historian, because the site had been one of the best tools for connecting families separated by slavery.

 

As more law enforcement agencies have begun experimenting with genetic genealogy, the GEDmatch database has grown by about 1,800 profiles every day, Mr. Olson said.

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We will find you: DNA search used to nab Golden State Killer can home in on about 60% of white Americans

By Jocelyn KaiserOct. 11, 2018 , 2:00 PM

 

If you’re white, live in the United States, and a distant relative has uploaded their DNA to a public ancestry database, there’s a good chance an internet sleuth can identify you from a DNA sample you left somewhere. That’s the conclusion of a new study, which finds that by combining an anonymous DNA sample with some basic information such as someone’s rough age, researchers could narrow that person’s identity to fewer than 20 people by starting with a DNA database of 1.3 million individuals.

 

Such a search could potentially allow the identification of about 60% of white Americans from a DNA sample—even if they have never provided their own DNA to an ancestry database. “In a few years, it’s really going to be everyone,” says study leader Yaniv Erlich, a computational geneticist at Columbia University.

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60% of Americans cant be black

 

 Even if no one in america took a DNA test. Random DNA would still suggest that 

 

40% of America is not black

 

 I get what the post hints at but I do not think it will have the impact it might suggest

 

 should be interesting how this plays out, If our DNA in the public is free to use. Then I do not see how I could keep my DNA out of this pool of genealogy 

 

 If you toss a coffee cup in the trash at the park, is taking that cup and using it how I see fit considered stealing ?  seems like a pickle 

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I looked like this Image result for high school mullet

 

 

 

 

 

My Dna say I look more like this Image result for native american male

 

 

my bald head suggests I got short end of the stick either way 

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8 hours ago, rrober49 said:

60% of Americans cant be black

 

 Even if no one in america took a DNA test. Random DNA would still suggest that 

 

40% of America is not black

 

 I get what the post hints at but I do not think it will have the impact it might suggest

 

 should be interesting how this plays out, If our DNA in the public is free to use. Then I do not see how I could keep my DNA out of this pool of genealogy 

 

 If you toss a coffee cup in the trash at the park, is taking that cup and using it how I see fit considered stealing ?  seems like a pickle 

 

My DNA is on the Gedmatch website.  They asked me to agree that my DNA could be used to track criminals.  Usually, the police contact the relative, ask for access to the family tree, and then start tracking which people are the correct age, location, etc.

 

One of the newest uses, is that families with missing relatives are posting DNA to see if it matches any of the John or Jane Does.  A recent find was a family finding a 17 year old runaway; missing in the 1970s.  He had been hit by a car, and had no identification.

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well one of these day they might not need to ask, and move onto interpreting what role you best fit in life

 

we already discredit a persons ability by observation alone

 

I dont like to be paranoid but if republicans could ask for DNA at the voting booths I believe they would

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1 hour ago, rrober49 said:

well one of these day they might not need to ask, and move onto interpreting what role you best fit in life

 

we already discredit a persons ability by observation alone

 

I dont like to be paranoid but if republicans could ask for DNA at the voting booths I believe they would

Please don't give them any ideas.

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Just now, Mindy09 said:

Please don't give them any ideas.

 

bouncing buggy Black market crispr babies might be the end no one saw coming

 

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