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NCJ Number: 185690 Find in a Library
Title: Understanding DNA Evidence: A Guide for Victim Service Providers
Series: OVC Others
Author(s): Kathryn M. Turman
Corporate Author: Office for Victims of Crime
US Dept of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Date Published: April 2001
Page Count: 12
Sponsoring Agency: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Office for Victims of Crime
Washington, DC 20531
OVC Resource Ctr
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

OVC Resource Ctr
P.O. Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: HTML|PDF|Text
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This bulletin offers victim service providers an understanding of how DNA testing may be used in victims’ cases, the process and procedures used and the potential outcomes from the test.
Abstract: DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the fundamental building block for an individual’s entire genetic makeup, our hereditary blueprint. DNA is a powerful investigative tool. DNA evidence collected from a crime scene can link a suspect to a crime or eliminate one from suspicion. It is important that every victim service provider be aware of important issues involved in the identification, collection, transportation, and storage of DNA evidence to prevent contamination. The bulletin continues with information provided on DNA processes and procedures including contamination issues, DNA testing analysis, interpreting results of DNA analysis, analysis of DNA evidence in closed and unsolved cases, using the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) to identify and link serial crimes, showing the power of DNA evidence through three case studies, and postconviction events and DNA testing. Forensic DNA plays a significantly important role in solving sexual assault and homicide cases. DNA evidence is a crucial tool in effective police work. DNA evidence exonerates the innocent and alerts law enforcement to pursue the actual offender. Although DNA is a powerful tool, it is useless if not properly collected, preserved, and tested. Members of the criminal justice community must be trained to identify DNA evidence, understand its significance, and counsel victims on how valuable it is in apprehending and convicting offenders. Glossary and References
Main Term(s): DNA fingerprinting
Index Term(s): Evidence collection; Evidence identification; Evidence preservation; Forensic sciences; Scientific testimony; Victim services; Victim services training
Note: OVC Bulletin
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