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Press Releases

Cold Case Sexual Assault Unit Introduces New Partnership

Post Date:12/01/2016 3:01 PM

1 Press Release Header


Anthony Kelly

Interim Chief of Police

Release: IMMEDIATE                            

Contact: Lt. T. Joyce, Public Information Officer

Date: December 1, 2016                          

Phone: (910) 433-1374


Cold Case Sexual Assault Unit Introduces New Partnership


(Fayetteville, NC) – The Fayetteville Police Department Cold Case Sexual Assault Unit has recently sought the services of Parabon NanoLabs (Parabon), a DNA technology company in Virginia that specializes in DNA phenotyping: the process of predicting physical appearance and ancestry from unidentified DNA evidence.  Law enforcement agencies use the company’s Snapshot ™ DNA Phenotyping Service (Snapshot) to narrow suspect lists and generate leads in criminal investigations. On Thursday, December 8, 2016, the FPD will hold a press conference to discuss the new partnership at the Cumberland County Courthouse in Courtroom 4A at 10:00 am.


Using DNA evidence from this investigation, Snapshot produced trait predictions for the

associated person of interest (POI).  Individual predictions were made for the subject’s ancestry, eye color, hair color, skin color, freckling, and face shape.  By combining these attributes of appearance, a Snapshot composite was produced depicting what the POI may have looked like at 25 years old and with an average body-mass index (BMI) of 22.  These default values were used because age and BMI cannot be determined from DNA.  Snapshot composites were also created with facial hair added and with age progression in order to represent what the subject may look like today.


It is important to note that Snapshot composites are scientific approximations of appearance based on DNA, and are not likely to be exact replicas of appearance.  Environmental factors such as smoking, drinking, diet, and other non-environmental factors — e.g., facial hair, hairstyle, scars, etc. — cannot be predicted by DNA analysis and may cause further variation between the subject’s predicted and actual appearance.


What is the Parabon Snapshot DNA Phenotyping Service?

Snapshot, built with funding from the US Department of Defense, is a revolutionary new

forensic DNA analysis service that accurately predicts the physical appearance and ancestry of an unknown person from DNA. It can also determine kinship between DNA samples out to six degrees of relatedness. Snapshot is ideal for generating investigative leads, narrowing suspect lists, and identifying unknown remains.

Website: https://snapshot.parabon-nanolabs.com/


Examples of Snapshot Composites Released by Law Enforcement to the Public:



Informational Videos About Snapshot:

● Introduction to Snapshot (3 Minutes):



● NBC Nightly News Evaluation of Snapshot (~ 3 Minutes / No audio, captions only):



● How to Read a Snapshot DNA Phenotyping Report (14 Minutes):



About Parabon NanoLabs, Inc.

Parabon NanoLabs, which developed and operates the Snapshot DNA Phenotyping Service, is avertically integrated DNA technology company located in Reston, Virginia that develops next-generation forensic and therapeutic products, which leverage the enormous power of DNA.  Staffed by a uniquely qualified team of scientists and technologists, with expertise ranging from bioinformatics and chemistry to computer science and pharmacology, Parabon is bringing to market revolutionary new products and services made possible by recent advances in DNA sequencing, analysis and manufacturing technologies.

Website: https://parabon-nanolabs.com/


Media Inquiries About the Snapshot Technology Can Be Directed To:

Parabon NanoLabs Contact

Paula Armentrout

P: 703.689.9689 x250




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