Los Angeles: A Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) study found that DNA technology increased the likelihood of solving property crimes.
The LAPD released the results of a 20-month study, which was funded by the National Institute of Justice. The results showed that in 45 percent of burglary cases, where DNA was collected and a profile developed, a suspect was identified.
The LAPD study focused on residential and commercial burglaries in the San Fernando Valley and was conducted between February 2006 and October 2007. Print experts and photographers from LAPD’s Scientific Investigation Division (SID), officers and detectives at each crime scene were responsible for collecting evidence for these cases and were provided with additional training.
There were a total of 390 crime scenes, of these there were 78 "hits" to a convicted offender. These results assisted investigators in making 51 arrests.
The National Institute of Justice funded a five city program to evaluate the cost effectiveness of using DNA technology to solve property crimes. In addition to Los Angeles, the other program sites were: Orange County, California; Denver, Colorado; Topeka, Kansas; and Phoenix, Arizona.
The program included additional evidence collection training that was conducted for Valley Bureau roll calls. DNA Analysis was outsourced to a contract vendor with data review, according to LAPD SID Criminalists.
An in-depth description of the 5-city experiment is available at: http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/nij/topics/forensics/dna/property-crime/evaluating-experiment.htm
If you have any questions, please contact Greg Matheson, LAPD Criminalistics Lab Director, or Yvette Sanchez-Owens at 323-415-8112.