TrueAllele solves uninterpretable DNA in mother and daughter double homicide

Back to Newsroom


Allen Wade convicted of murdering Susan and Sarah Wolfe

Pittsburgh, PA

On February 6, 2014, Susan Wolfe, 44, and her sister, Sarah Wolfe, 38, were killed in their East Liberty home. Their bodies were found in the basement, with both women shot in the head. Convicted felon and next-door neighbor Allen Wade, 45, was arrested and charged with the double homicide.

The county crime laboratory was unable to fully interpret the DNA mixture evidence. Cybergenetics was asked to run their TrueAllele® technology on the lab’s data. The TrueAllele computer separated the DNA mixture data into genotypes. Comparing genotypes with reference samples gave match statistics, showing the strength of association between evidence and people.

On Thursday, May 12, Cybergenetics Dr. Mark Perlin testified all day about the TrueAllele match statistics. He showed how fingernails from Susan Wolfe’s right hand were connected to defendant Wade with a 6.06 trillion statistic, and to the victim with a 21.8 million statistic. A Hanes sock found on Whitfield Street connected Wade with a 2.96 quintillion statistic, and Sarah Wolfe with a statistic of 300. A hat left from a burglary of the Wolfe sister’s home a few weeks before the murder connected Wade with a 65.3 thousand statistic.

“Cybergenetics completes what crime labs start,” said Dr. Perlin. “Using crime lab data, TrueAllele can calculate accurate match statistics on complex DNA evidence.” Some labs have their own TrueAllele computers, while others send their data to Cybergenetics for statistical processing. “Both prosecutors and defenders use TrueAllele to find the truth in DNA evidence,” said Perlin.

Following lengthy closing arguments yesterday by both sides, the jury deliberated to decide the fate of Allen Wade. They found the defendant guilty of the murders of Susan and Sarah Wolfe. He was sentenced to life in prison without parole.


Wolfe Sisters
Sisters Sarah (left) and Susan (right) Wolfe.
Back to top