This is the final report on the NIJ-sponsored "No Suspect Casework DNA Backlog Reduction Program FY 2001" of the Connecticut Department of Public Safety Forensic Science Laboratory.
The goal of the project was to solve more serious cases of violent crimes by processing more DNA evidence in cases where no viable suspects have been identified by investigators ("no-suspect" cases). The intent of meeting this goal was to increase the number of no-suspect DNA profiles the lab submits to the FBI's Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) for possible matches with DNA profiles of convicted offenders throughout the Nation. These goals were achieved. The number of no-suspect cases processed by offense type was 164 sexual assaults, 2 homicides, 5 other violent crimes against persons, and 20 other offenses (burglary, threatening, and terrorism). A total of 128 of the analyzed cases were entered into CODIS. Through CODIS, 11 DNA profiles were matched in the Connecticut offender database; 3 persons were identified from out-of-State offender databases (Maine, Colorado, and New York; and 6 profiles matched other no-suspect profiles in CODIS. In addition to using grant funds to increase the number of no-suspect cases analyzed and entered into CODIS, additional analytical equipment was purchased that enabled faster sample processing. The Promega AluQuant system was found to be considerably faster than the lab's existing quantitation method (QuantiBlot). This report also describes the plan developed by the lab for no-suspect DNA analysis. It consisted of three phases: case identification and review, sample analysis and search, and interagency coordination. The features of each of these phases are described.