TrueAllele solves uninterpretable DNA in mother and daughter double homicide

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Indianapolis Star features TrueAllele exoneration of Darryl Pinkins

Indianapolis, IN

He went to prison for rape. Proof of his innocence surfaced 25 years later. Reporter Kristine Guerra writes about how Darryl Pinkins fought to prove his innocence in a brutal 1989 crime he didn't commit. With the help of Fran Watson, a professor at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis, Pinkins succeeded.

In 2001, DNA technology identified genotypes of two unidentified men, neither of whom was Pinkins. But the Indiana Court of Appeals did not believe the findings were newly discovered evidence entitling Pinkins to a new trial. Because there were five perpetrators, "evidence of two unidentified DNA profiles (could not) exonerate" Pinkins or codefendant Roosevelt Glenn. The court needed information for all five.

15 years later, Cybergenetics TrueAllele® computing on the same DNA data found that:

  • More than two people contributed to the DNA mixture found on the pieces of evidence. The jacket, the sweater and the hair strand that prosecutors said belonged to Glenn contained genotypes from three men. None came from Pinkins or Glenn.
  • The genotypes were different but incredibly similar. That meant they were most likely brothers. None of the five men who were charged are related.
  • There were two other men. By simultaneously comparing DNA from the jacket and the sweater, TrueAllele found two other genotypes, though they were not as definitive as the other three.

"Now we have five people, not just two, and three of those people were brothers," said Dr. Mark Perlin of Cybergenetics. "And none of those five people are the defendants."

In April of 2016, all charges against Pinkins were dismissed. "We believe with the evidence we had, with the DNA findings, we had no other choice," said Lake County Prosecutor Bernard Carter. No hearings, no arguments, no trials. No more waiting. After 25 years in prison, Pinkins was a free man.


  • He went to prison for rape. Proof of his innocence surfaced 25 years later - Indianapolis Star
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