Edmonton police use DNA phenotyping for first time to find sex assault suspect

Phenotyping seeks suspect

Edmonton police say they are using DNA phenotyping, for the first time in its history, in trying to solve a sexual assault.

DNA phenotyping predicts physical appearance and ancestry from unidentified DNA evidence, and police use that information to narrow suspects and generate leads in criminal investigations.

Det. Colleen Maynes says the method is a last resort after all other investigative avenues have been exhausted.

Police say a woman lost consciousness after she was violently sexually assaulted by a man who followed her from a bus stop in March of 2019.

Detectives enlisted a DNA technology company in Virginia to help in the case.

The DNA phenotyping determined the suspect is a Black man with dark brown to black hair and dark brown eyes who stands about five-foot-four.

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