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What happens if that DNA has no match in CODIS?

That’s where we come in.

Generate new leads in long-cold cases. Get the piece of information that solidifies a suspect. Solve the cases that haunt the victim’s memories. Bring them closure.


Understand this Ground-Breaking Resource:

  • What will DNA Cold Cases provide that CODIS will not?

  • What about Chain of Custody?

  • How will DNA Cold Cases protect investigation integrity?

  • Does this work?

What will DNA Cold Cases provide that traditional DNA comparison (NDIS/CODIS) will not?

The national DNA database system (NDIS/CODIS) allows law enforcement officers around the country to compare forensic evidence to a central repository of DNA information. In this way, officers can better determine the identity of a suspect based on biological crime scene evidence. The obvious limitation is: What if the suspect does not have a DNA sample on file?

There is a distinct difference between our group’s ability to collect and identify DNA evidence at the autosomal DNA level and that collected and used in the NDIS and CODIS system. While we are not law enforcement officers, we do have access to compare your autosomal DNA, evidence to that of publicly available DNA databases, like those found at GEDmatch.com. These databases allow us to compare similarities in forensic DNA samples that you provide with those available in the public domain.

We overcome the limitations of traditional search by converting forensic DNA samples into autosomal DNA results, using a specially equipped forensic lab accredited to process evidence. The genetic genealogist can make an identification by triangulating through the public DNA databases of the subjects’ distant cousins shared DNA matches. These state-of-the-art “digital fingerprints” can make identification where all other disciplines have fallen short.

By way of reverse engineering your DNA evidence with publicly available DNA databases, we can triangulate the most recent common ancestors (MRCA) (using chromosome analysis) and work to identify the most likely individual families they belong to through genetic genealogy.

Essentially, after a suspect’s DNA is processed by our forensics lab, our genealogists can follow the genetic breadcrumbs back to real people.

By using industry-standard genealogical comparison, the genealogists at DNA Cold Cases can identify the individual family of the unknown DNA sample.

Legal Considerations

We at DNA Cold Cases recognize that Law Enforcement faces the unique challenges of completing investigations within the confines of policy, procedure, and the law.

To that end, DNA Cold Cases retained a Law Enforcement consultant to ensure our entire operation is up to the standard of Law Enforcement investigations.


We have implemented several policies to address the concerns of our Law Enforcement clients. The following policies are available here:

  • Information Security and Disclosures

  • Media Disclosures

  • Case Management

It is our absolute goal for our Law enforcement clients to understand that DNA Cold Cases will not share any information regarding any case without the express approval of the agency having jurisdiction. We take case integrity and security as seriously as you do.


Chain of Custody:

We work with DNA Solutions, an FBI QAS accredited forensic testing laboratory, to perform forensic analysis to the highest level in accordance with the evidence standards established by the FBI. Their results are court accepted.

DNA Solutions is also accredited to the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB) standard for relationship testing. The American Association of Blood Banks has set the standards laboratories must follow to offer accredited legal relationship testing.

Once DNA Cold Cases opens your case, DNA Solutions will provide the information for evidence transfer. As an accredited forensic laboratory, DNA Solutions will provide the transfer protocol and chain of custody receipts to preserve the chain.

After receiving the evidence sample. DNA Solutions will process it and produce a raw DNA data file. This data file is the only thing transferred to DNA Cold Cases.

No physical evidence will be transferred to DNA Cold Cases.

Upon receipt of the raw DNA data file, our genealogists will begin the tree-building process.

Case Integrity:

DNA Cold Cases cannot compromise the integrity of your investigation because of our limited information role. DNA Cold Cases does not need names, birthdates, locations, crime scene information, suspects, victim information, etc. This information is unnecessary for our research.

Does this work?

Short answer: Yes. And the results are hitting headlines.

2018 - the Sacramento police arrested Joseph James DeAngelo as the Golden State Killer. After 40 years of sitting cold, DeAngelo, now 71, was identified by a breakthrough collaboration of crime scene DNA technology and the analysis of DNA profiles available through public DNA databases.

2018 - Iowa police announce an arrest in the 1979 murder of Michelle Martinko

2019 - Authorities in Alabama announced the arrest of Coley McCraney, 45, in the 1999 double murder of two teenage girls.

2019 - Washington Authorities announce an arrest in the 1972 murder of Judy Loomis.


Your case can be next. For a limited time (pro-bono) the only cost to you is the time to submit the sample and a small lab fee.

If you have additional questions, please feel free to Contact Us.