DNA Reference

Law Enforcement Services

A cold case can languish for years in police files. New leads can be scarce, arising from decades old material.


If DNA does become available, an exact match to the CODIS database can identify a perpetrator. However, without an exact match, even DNA can become a dead end, since most states prohibit familial matching.


With the popularity of Y-DNA among genealogists researching their family names, however, law enforcement has new options for generating fresh leads for cases that are even decades old. There are now thousands of websites dedicated to genetic genealogy that contain Y-DNA haplotypes associated with last names. These databases, when searched properly, offer the possibility a match for an unknown Y-profile, thus identifying the probable last name for a perpetrator. Recent crimes can benefit from DNA matching - discovering the last name of a perpetrator soon after a crime is committed can allow for immediate investigation of persons with that name, preventing the case from going cold.


An individual's DNA can reveal so about him - the more closely it is examined, the more information it can yield. Even lacking a Y-match, an unknown Y-profile can still produce useful information, such as a criminal's ethnic background, his family pedigree, or clues to his religious background. Leads generated by Y-matching techniques can then be compared to a case file to narrow down a list of suspects.


Identifinders works with law enforcement agencies on DNA identification where CODIS has failed to produce a match. We have developed proprietary techniques to correlate the Y-profile from an unidentified donor with exiting genetic genealogy databases. We do not require detailed information about a case - only the Y-DNA profile associated with the crime. If we find no match to a last name within the databases, we keep the profile on file and monitor it for future matches.