Secondary DNA

Secondary DNA

Can secondary DNA falsely place a person at the scene of a crime? New research says that it's more common than you think. A new study out of the University of Indianapolis Human Biology Department shows that an innocent person could shake hands with a person who later handles a knife. The innocent person's DNA was secondarily transferred in sufficient quantities to make possible that DNA analysis would conclude they were the only contributor or major contributor.

The use of DNA in military criminal trials demands experience. Historically, military experts from the crime lab were dismissive of defense counsel arguments that DNA on sexual assault victim's clothing could have been secondarily transferred. The new study could provide important areas for cross-examination by counsel.