We are surrounded by a world of violent crime. Rape, murder, and armed assault happen daily. Though the violent crime rate has declined, so too has the solve rate. That means that more violent criminals are left free to hurt others. Unsolved crimes become cold cases and join decades old backlogs.

We can all help though. All it takes is our willingness to contribute DNA results from tests many of us have already taken. With results from sites like 23andMe and Ancestry.com, we can help law enforcement identify persons of interest.

  • Upload to DNA Solves. This database is searchable by law enforcement only.
  • Upload and consent to law enforcement matching at GEDmatch.

By matching DNA from crime scenes to ones in these databases, law enforcement is able to identify matches to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd cousins. Combined with genealogy, they are able to find individuals who may be the source of the crime scene DNA. They then use traditional criminal investigative methods to solve the case.

Thus, our DNA does not determine guilt, but it does help find leads that in turn help solve crimes.