Author Topic: WINCHESTER JANE DOE: AF, 25-40 -Found near the 100 block of Froman Rd - Nov 27, 2003  (Read 99 times)


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Leads sought in 2003 homicide

Police are hoping DNA phenotyping — facial reconstruction of an unidentified person from their genetic fingerprint — will reheat a 16-year-old cold murder case.

On Friday, the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office released a composite photo of woman whose torso was found by a hunter in the woods near the 400 block of Froman Road in Nov. 27, 2003. Sheriff Lenny Milholland said on Friday that the woman’s arms, legs and head had been removed elsewhere in an apparent attempt to keep her from being identified. The composite predicted the woman was about 25 years old with brown eyes and black hair and of Southeast Asian descent.

Although no fingerprints or teeth were recovered, DNA was taken from the body. Millholland said last year’s arrest of the suspected Golden State killer — responsible for more than a dozen homicides and 50 **** between 1975 and 1986 — inspired him to try to identify the woman through DNA genealogy sampling. Suspect Joseph James DeAngelo Jr., a former police officer charged with 13 murders, was tracked down through the DNA of his relatives on a genealogy database that people use to discover their ancestry and relatives.

The woman’s DNA was sent to Parabon NanoLabs, a Reston company that’s had success in identifying suspects and victims through phenotyping.

“Recent advances in genomic technology have made it practical and affordable to read the sequence of millions of pieces of DNA from a small quantity of sample,” the company’s website said. “This data captures a large proportion of the genomic variation between people and thus contains much of the genetic blueprint that differentiates people’s appearance. These SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) genotypes can then be paired with phenotypes from thousands of subjects to create a genotype-and-phenotype (GaP) dataset for analysis.”

Parabon cited several cases they helped solve through facial reconstruction. They included the murder of Shaquana Marie Caldwell who was found near Glen Burnie, Md., in 2017. A composite identified her as having disappeared from Baltimore and led to the arrest of her boyfriend who police said confessed to strangling her.

Millholland said the several thousand dollars spent to generate the composite was a good investment. He said investigators owed it to the woman’s family to try to identify her and locate a suspect and Parabon has a good track record.

“They’ve been pretty spot on in the ones that they’ve done across the country,” he said. “And we had nothing to lose. We had nothing.”