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Man arrested on murder and sexual battery charges

Posted on February 10, 2011 3:00 AM EST

The police claim that they have solved a murder and sexual battery case that was committed in 2000. The cold case was solved through the use of DNA evidence. The defendant, a former Miami-Dade transit employee, was already in custody on two other cases involving sexual battery and attempted murder. The Miami criminal defense lawyer representing the defendant on the first two cases will apparently represent him on the newest charges. Detectives obtained the DNA as part of their investigation into the recent sexual battery case. Many other cold cases have been solved by the use of DNA. The law in the State of Florida changed a couple of years ago that requires defendants under certain circumstances to submit their DNA to a data base. This change in the law has allowed law enforcement to solve old previously unsolved cases.

The defendant has had relatively few contacts with the criminal justice system which is the reason his DNA was not found in the data base. He had previously been arrested for strong arm robbery which was eventually dismissed by the state and a domestic violence case in which he was charged with simple battery for allegedly beating his girlfriend and the mother of three of his children. The charges were dropped after he completed the pre-trial diversion (PTD) program after attending domestic violence classes.

Florida Statute 943.325 was passed by the legislature because DNA databases are important tools in criminal investigations, not only for apprehending people who commit crimes, but also to exclude people from being wrongfully charged with a crime. The statute mentions that it was created to assist law enforcement on the federal, state and local level in the identification and detection of criminals, as well as missing persons. The legislature also believed that it was in the best interests of the citizens of the State of Florida to establish a statewide data base which contains DNA samples of individuals convicted of or arrested for felony offenses and convicted of certain misdemeanor offenses.

The law that requires individuals to submit their DNA samples apples to qualified offenders. Qualified offenders are defined as persons: committed to a county jail, committed to the department of corrections, committed to the juvenile justice system, convicted of a felony offense, or convicted of certain misdemeanor offenses. Each qualified offender must submit a DNA sample at the time he or she is booked into a jail, correctional facility, juvenile facility or at the time the plea is taken. A statewide laboratory is responsible for maintaining a statewide automated personal identification system capable of classifying, storing, and matching DNA samples. All crime laboratories within the state have access to the data base.

Arrest Made in 2000 in 200 Murder and Rape of Miami Runaway Girl, Miami Herald.com, February 8, 2011.
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