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Pastimes : Murder Mystery: Who Killed Yale Student Suzanne Jovin?

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To: Jeffrey S. Mitchell who wrote (1199)12/7/2005 9:05:17 PM
From: Jeffrey S. Mitchell  Read Replies (1) of 1390
Re: John Regan's DNA

Given that John Regan has had his DNA tested, and given that tri-state (NY, CT, and MA) police forces are speculating Regan might be behind a bunch of unsolved murders and disappearances, why have there not been any DNA matches?

When people are arrested, their fingerprints are filed electronically immediately (at least local, often national). However, even though DNA samples might also be taken, they are only allowed to be entered upon *conviction*. Regan has not yet been convicted of anything so privacy laws prohibit his DNA from being entered into the national DNA database.

The only way Regan's DNA can be checked for a match is if a law enforcement body with jurisdiction requests it. Jurisdiction is normally held by the police department in the city in which the alleged crime occurred. Therefore, as pertains to the Jovin murder, this request would likely come from the New Haven police, although the FBI or CT State's Attorney could also intervene.

According to news reports, area police departments are making such requests. For example, Worcester, MA launched a special investigation as to whether Regan might have been involved with the Molly Bish disappearance in 2000. The Worcester District Attorney eventually cleared Regan of any involvement. As of today, no law enforcement authority has requested John Regan's DNA be compared to the DNA collected from under Suzanne Jovin's fingernails.

As regards the partial print found on the soda bottle found near Suzanne, since it was a palm print, that would not be in the fingerprint database regardless. Again, a special request would have to be made for Regan's palm print to see if it matched. Yes, palm prints like fingerprints are unique.

I should mention that in the past year or so since CT law changed and DNA samples became mandated for convicted felons (not just sex offenders) the state forensics lab has done several thousand and added them to the state database which automatically puts them in the national one. There has obviously been no match so far with the Jovin fingernail DNA, a comparison for which would be done automatically each time a new sample is added.

- Jeff
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