Experts: DNA a strong link in Queens jogger slaying

Experts say the DNA test implicating an East New York man in connection with the brutal slaying of a Queens jogger over the summer is powerful evidence.



Chanel Lewis, 20, is accused of killing Karina Vetrano, 30, as she jogged alone in Spring Creek Park on the evening of Aug. 2.



Lewis gave police a DNA sample, and investigators say it matched evidence found at the crime scene and on the victim's body.



"She had the DNA under her nails," says NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce. "She had DNA on her back, and there was more DNA on the cellphone. So three instances -- that's how we are able to bring this profile up, and that's how we made the link."



DNA expert Nathan Lents says the chance that Lewis's DNA appeared in all three places without direct contact would be very rare.



"If it's a stranger's DNA on a murder victim, they have a lot more to answer for, particularly when you find DNA under the fingernails," Lents says.



Earlier this month, Vetrano's parents had issued a public plea, asking the state to allow a so-called familial DNA test to try and find a suspect. Such a test would compare samples to people whose DNA is already stored in the criminal system in a bid to find a close match and possible links to the suspect. Police say that ultimately, they did not need to do that to find Lewis.


sorry to interrupt
your first 5 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 5 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 5 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login, create an account or subscribe to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."