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    • CommentAuthoracacia
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008
     (4153.1)
    So, via this article that Warren linked (http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2008/nov/09/germany-serial-killer) - Is it common for reporters or authorities to be vague about what type of DNA has been found on these crime scenes? I don't understand how she's leaving such regular traces of DNA everywhere. Does she drool or bleed everywhere or what.
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008
     (4153.2)
    I imagine it is probably common for them to be vague about the details of crime scenes, for various reasons. It did say they were microscopic traces.
    • CommentAuthoracacia
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008 edited
     (4153.3)
    After I wrote this post, I was like 'duh, it's an ongoing investigation'.
  1.  (4153.4)
    Is it common for reporters or authorities to be vague about what type of DNA has been found on these crime scenes?

    From reading the Article:
    The only clue was microscopic traces of DNA, found on the centre console and the rear passenger seat of the BMW.

    forensic officers found traces of the same DNA found in the police car in Heilbronn.

    And it was here, 15 years ago, that the search for the Woman Without a Face began - with a DNA sample on the rim of a brightly painted teacup.

    It next appeared five months later, just a few dozen miles from Bad Kreuznach, on a discarded heroin syringe.

    DNA taken from an abandoned biscuit outside matched the Woman Without a Face.

    It was later abandoned, and when it was tested, her DNA was found on the petrol cap.

    In Karlsruhe in 2005, there was a late-night robbery at a bar. Her DNA was found on two beer bottles and an empty wine glass.

    A member of the local gypsy community turned a 7.65-calibre pistol on his brother, and police promptly arrested the gunman - only to find, after forensic checks in Wiesbaden, that the mystery woman's DNA was on one of the bullets.


    Etc. The reporters are not being vague. DNA is left everywhere, where ever you go. It's in the skin cells you leave when you touch things, or take a drink. Most reporters aren't going to say they tested the spittle left on the cup - no one wants to read that (not exciting, not fun and gross to most people).

    The article also mentioned they cannot test for some specific physical characteristics, such as race, hair, and eye color, due to the laws in place in Germany.
    • CommentAuthoracacia
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008 edited
     (4153.5)
    "The article also mentioned they cannot test for some specific physical characteristics, such as race, hair, and eye color, due to the laws in place in Germany."

    Yea, that is interesting stuff.
  2.  (4153.6)
    It'd be hilarious to find out that all the DNA tests are being run by one lab, with one particular technician completely failing to follow protocol and contaminating everything with her DNA.
  3.  (4153.7)
    Didn't that happen in an episode of The Wire?
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      CommentAuthorliquidcow
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008
     (4153.8)
    @JimJonesEsquire - I think you're referring to the bit where all the samples get mixed up or labeled incorrectly and they can't separate which samples come from which crime scene. That was basically a filing error, not a contamination one.
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      CommentAuthordispophoto
    • CommentTimeNov 11th 2008
     (4153.9)
    that was also an episode on CSI where the swabs or something were contaminated at the company that made them.
    • CommentAuthorCassius
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008
     (4153.10)
    ZOMG! Who will stop this Fiend?!?
    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008 edited
     (4153.11)
    The execution-style killing of the police officers and the fact that other victims were criminals suggest to me that the killer is a career criminal and not what most people think of when they talk about serial killers.

    If and when they find her I think it'll turn out she killed in the course of committing other crimes not out of some inner compulsion.
    • CommentAuthorCassius
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008
     (4153.12)
    @Kosmopolit, it that's the case, you really have to wander what a 22 year old policewoman, an Iraqi, a Somali, a 62 year old woman and an elderly antiques dealer had done, that warranted someone ordering 'a hit' on them all.
    • CommentAuthorKosmopolit
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008
     (4153.13)
    I'm thinking more in the line of armed robbery.

    If nothing else, the police officer probably had a handgun and criminals in Europe are always keen to get hold of those.
    • CommentAuthorMeta
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008 edited
     (4153.14)
    Damn scary. The only link to heroin was 1 dirty needle. Maybe she is not addict, just tried horse once, killed junky turning her on and nastily put dirty spike where child would tread on? Good article, learnt a few tings about DNA from it. And the names of the crime sites. Worm? Fookin Hellpit or someting? Great.
    • CommentAuthorMeta
    • CommentTimeNov 13th 2008 edited
     (4153.15)
    If i see a faceless clone blowing cops away i will have a go. With a quick whip of me trusty stick.
    • CommentAuthorCassius
    • CommentTimeNov 14th 2008
     (4153.16)
    @Meta,

    THEN WHO WAS THE CLONE?!?

    sorry, inside joke.

    @Kosmopolit, ha, when I hear career criminal I think assassin. Damn Hollywood. Armed robbery makes sense I guess, I wish there was more information as in, if anything was stolen from the murder victims... still seems a bit messy to me.
    • CommentAuthoracacian
    • CommentTimeNov 26th 2010
     (4153.17)

    It'd be hilarious to find out that all the DNA tests are being run by one lab, with one particular technician completely failing to follow protocol and contaminating everything with her DNA.


    I'm waaaay late on this, but I just found out they 'unmasked' the 'Phantom of Heilbronn' and wanted to give belated necro-props for calling it: http://freakonomics.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/30/the-phantom-of-heilbronn-unmasked/

    Via: http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/culturelab/2010/11/watching-the-dna-detectives.html
    •  
      CommentAuthorilauveyou
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2010
     (4153.18)
    AHAHAHA. Great.
    •  
      CommentAuthorilauveyou
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2010
     (4153.19)
    She still might exist. I know I want her to. She probably works at the cotton swab factory. What a genius plan - contaminate all of the world's cotton swabs then run around killing people and never get caught.
    • CommentAuthorVox Doom
    • CommentTimeNov 27th 2010 edited
     (4153.20)
    Edit: Nevermind, thread was necroed with the same info I was going to give.