Now Accepting Submissions
for DNA Hit of the Year - 2018


From a “cold hit” to a missing person case, did a DNA breakthrough support your lab or police department’s effort to solve an important case? We want to share stories of how you used forensic DNA evidence to find answers, identify suspects and help make the world a safer place. Submit your case to be considered as the DNA Hit of the Year and help bring recognition to the power of forensic DNA databases to solve crime.


Accepting cold hit cases where the hit occurred in the last 48 months - Submission deadline is March 2.




Highlights - DNA Hit of the Year 2017


Over 50 cases from 15 countries;
Selected case determined by panel of 7 international judges;
Top five finalist cases from: Austria, China, Florida, Italy, and New York;

Case selected as the 2017 DNA Hit of the Year:
The Yara Gambirasio Case

A young girl was murdered in an Italian village on her way home from the gym. A full DNA profile was found at the crime scene. With no suspects, police used the world’s largest voluntary mass screen database and familial searching to eventually find a deceased person that was likely the father of the person that left the DNA at the crime scene. However, his sons did not match the crime scene DNA. It was concluded that the DNA must have come from a son born out of wedlock. Making matters more difficult the son born out of wedlock was unknown to the family or to the community. Through a series of complicated investigations, the son born out of wedlock was identified and matched the crime scene DNA. Based on the DNA match and other evidence, he was convicted on July 1, 2016.


Sampling of 2017 Finalists:

  + The Bayin Killer - China's Jack the Ripper
  A serial killer in China was caught after police tested his brother's DNA for a separate crime, and a family match was found. The supect targeted young women dressed in red and followed them home, where he would rape and kill them, often cutting their throat and mutilating their dead bodies. The murders spanned the years between 1988 and 2002.

  + An Aspiring Actress - The Case of Wendy Webster
  An aspiring actress was assaulted, robbed, and raped one night after work. Rape kit DNA evidence yielded neither a profile nor a match until 2015 when a Florida man was arrested. He bit the arresting officer, who subsequently took a DNA sample and submitted it into the database. It triggered a hit against the actress' rapist. He was charged under a special John Doe indictment then convicted.

  + Taken as a Baby - The Case of Kamyiah Mobley
  A baby girl was taken from a hospital just after birth. 18 years later, police received a tip that a particular woman may be that baby. Her DNA was taken via search warrant, and identity confirmed through DNA match.

  + Kotwica Serial Killer
  Europe's first cross-continent serial killer murdered women in various countries, including Austria and Sweden. Authorities in Austria were able to arrest him after DNA identification under the Prum treaty.