A man was cleared for a decades-old murder case Wednesday using DNA and genetic family tree information, the first time a new genetic investigative method has ever led to an exoneration.
Christoper Tapp, 43, served 20 of a 30 year sentence for the 1996 rape and murder of a woman named Angie Dodge, reports Agence France-Presse (AFP).
His conviction was overturned by a court in Idaho after evidence emerged through a technique called “genetic genealogy,” which was also used to identify the “Golden State Killer.” It requires making DNA matches with distant relatives.
The DNA evidence led police to another suspect, the victim’s neighbor Brian Dripps, who was arrested in May and confessed to the crime.
“It’s a new life, a new beginning, a new world for me, and I’m just gonna enjoy every day,” Tapp said at the end of the hearing, according to local media cited by AFP.
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