A male nurse has been arrested in Arizona for the sexual assault of a woman who gave birth while in a long-term vegetative state, police in the US state said Wednesday.
The 29-year-old victim — who police said “was not in a position to give consent” — gave birth late last month to a baby boy, sparking an investigation.
The suspect’s DNA was matched to that of the baby, leading to the arrest, according to police.
The suspect — identified as Nathan Sutherland, age 36 — faces charges of one count of sexual assault and one count of vulnerable adult abuse, Phoenix police Sergeant Tommy Thompson told a news conference.
Sutherland is a “licensed practical nurse who was responsible for providing care to the victim during this time the sexual assault occurred,” Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams said.
The police chief said she had not encountered a similar case during 30 years in law enforcement.
The victim’s family said in a statement carried by US media that she “has significant intellectual disabilities as a result of seizures very early in her childhood.”
The victim “does not speak but has some ability to move her limbs, head and neck” and “responds to sound and is able to make facial gestures,” the statement said.
“The baby, I am told, is doing good,” said Thompson.
“We can’t always choose how we come into this life, but what we can choose to do as a community is love this child, and that’s what we have the opportunity to do,” he said.
A lawyer for the woman’s family has said the infant “has been born into a loving family and will be well cared for,” according to The New York Times.
The CEO of the nursing facility resigned following the scandal, according to a statement sent to media.
“This is a facility that you should be safe in and someone wasn’t,” Phoenix Mayor Thelda Williams said.
Las Vegas police have asked soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo to submit a DNA sample as part of their investigation into rape allegations made against him.
The Juventus forward has vehemently denied the accusations — with his lawyer, Peter Christiansen, telling AFP the request was standard procedure.
“Mr Ronaldo has always maintained, as he does today, that what occurred in Las Vegas in 2009 was consensual in nature, so it is not surprising that DNA would be present, nor that the police would make this very standard request as part of their investigation,” he said in a statement.
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said it had made an official request to Italian authorities, adding it is “taking the same steps in this case as in any other sexual assault to facilitate the collection of DNA evidence.”
Former model Kathryn Mayorga, 34, of Las Vegas, accused Ronaldo in a complaint filed last year in the state of Nevada.
She claims after meeting him at a Las Vegas nightclub, he raped her at his hotel suite on June 13, 2009 — just before he joined Real Madrid from Manchester United.
Mayorga alleges she was paid $375,000 to keep quiet.
Ronaldo’s lawyers have said that the non-disclosure agreement signed with the former model is “by no means a confession of guilt.”
Mayorga’s attorney has previously said that the model agreed to an out-of-court settlement to keep her name from going public, but was inspired to speak out by the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment.
Mayorga’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment on Thursday.
United States officials have ordered DNA tests on “under 3,000” detained children who remain separated from their migrant parents, in an effort to reunite families at the center of a border crisis, a top US official said Thursday.
The Department of Health and Human Services is “doing DNA testing to confirm parentage quickly and accurately,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar told reporters on a conference call, stressing the department was seeking to meet a court-imposed deadline of next Tuesday to reunite some 100 detained children under age five.
Azar, in a bid to tamp down accusations that President Donald Trump’s administration has failed to account for some minors, said that “HHS knows the identity and location of every minor in the care of our grantees,” and that authorities were working to reunite children with their parents “as expeditiously as possible.”
Detectives in California used DNA left at crime scenes, combined with genetic information from a relative who joined an online genealogy service, to catch an alleged rapist and murderer who eluded authorities for four decades.
The arrest this week of 72-year-old Joseph James DeAngelo — believed to be the “Golden State Killer” responsible for 12 murders and more than 50 rapes in the 1970s and 1980s — was hailed as a victory for cutting-edge science and old-fashioned detective work.
“The answer was, and always was going to be, in the DNA,” said Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert.
Here’s how it unfolded.
Crime scene DNA
Schubert opened a cold case investigation into the Golden State Killer two years ago, according to The New York Times.
Investigators started with DNA samples from crime scenes that were in storage to build a genetic profile of the suspected attacker, which they then uploaded into an online genealogy database to see if they could find a match.
A Lake Worth, Florida-based company called GEDMatch acknowledged on Friday that its database “was used to help identify the Golden State Killer… although we were not approached by law enforcement or anyone else about this case or about the DNA.”
The company warned customers in a statement that even though the site was intended for genealogical research, possible uses of their DNA include “identification of relatives that have committed crimes or were victims of crimes,” and that they should delete their profiles if they had any concerns.
Although DeAngelo himself had not sent his own DNA to GEDMatch, at least one distant relative of his had done so, and possibly more.
GEDMatch is a website that “pools raw genetic profiles that people share publicly,” Paul Holes, a retired district attorney inspector, told the East Bay Times.
“No court order was needed to access that site’s large database of genetic blueprints.”
Larger companies including Ancestry.com and 23andMe denied any link to the investigation and said they had not given any customer data to law enforcement officials.
Online family trees
People who are related share chunks of identical DNA, which is interspersed with sections of different DNA.
Identifying these shared patterns can point investigators to people who are distant or close kin, depending on the extent of the match.
The crime lab began exploring online family trees that appeared to mirror the suspect’s DNA profile.
Then, they hunted for clues about various individuals in those families, to see if they were possible suspects.
On April 19, detectives decided that DeAngelo might be the one because a number of factors aligned: the DNA, his age, and the fact that he lived in the area where the crimes occurred.
Investigators set up surveillance in the tree-lined suburb where DeAngelo lived.
Then, Schubert said, “abandoned” DNA samples were acquired from him.
Officials have not said what was used, but it could have been a soda can, a hairbrush, or anything containing DeAngelo’s saliva, hair or blood.
“You leave your DNA in a place that is a public domain,” she said.
This allowed experts to compare the newly collected sample to the old DNA from the crime scene, and it was a match to more than 10 of the murders.
The sample provided “overwhelming evidence that it was him,” Schubert said, according to the Sacramento Bee.
Schubert asked the sheriff’s office to collect a second sample, to be sure. So they did.
“The second sample was astronomical evidence that it was him,” she said.
DeAngelo was arrested outside his home Tuesday and charged with murdering two people in 1978 in Rancho Cordova, California.
He is expected to face more charges.
“This was a true convergence of emerging technology and dogged determination by detectives,” Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones said.
The governor of Lagos State, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode, on Wednesday inaugurated “the first state-owned DNA Forensic Centre in West Africa”.
Governor Ambode expects the facility to go a long way in resolving all forms of crimes, paternity issues, and others through technology which is the modern trend across the world.
He said the completion and handing over of the centre, located at Odunlami Street on Lagos Island, was a significant milestone and a symbolic manifestation of his administration’s policies in reforming the justice sector and in line with his vision to make the State safe for residents and investors.
“From the domestic front to our places of work; from the way we learn, to doing business, the use of technology has become a way of life,” the governor was quoted as saying in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Habib Aruna.
“You will, therefore, understand why our administration had no hesitation in approving this project which serves among other things, as an effective method of bringing perpetrators of crime to book and ensuring quick dispensation of justice.”
Governor Ambode explained that the DNA centre has the capacity to provide the police, prosecutors, defense attorneys and private citizens with crime scene processing; serological screening for blood and semen; DNA analysis of bone, teeth and hair; maternal and paternal relationship DNA analysis; expert witness and case handling services; paternal and maternal ancestry DNA analysis; cold case file review and mass disaster human identification.
The decision to build the DNA forensic centre is the result of the state government’s understanding that security was key to good governance and sustainability of investment.
This, according to the governor, necessitated his administration’s heavy investment in security equipment, recruitment, and training of security personnel to assist law enforcement agencies in the maintenance of public peace and security.
The interventions, Governor Ambode said, had translated into tremendous success by the reduction in the
While assuring Lagosians that the government would not rest on its oars in coming up with initiatives to secure the State, Governor Ambode said with the commissioning, the government would now move to the second stage of building additional capacity in the areas of toxicology; trace evidence and controlled substance analysis; fingerprint and latent prints; firearms, ballistics and tool marks; digital forensics; and questioned documents examination.
“The development of these other forensic sections at the facility will complement the DNA forensic section and enhance the level of services offered today,” he said.
Before now, most, if not all DNA analysis and testing were performed outside Nigeria, a situation that caused longer turn-around times and an overall higher cost of bringing closure to a case.
“I am therefore convinced that the establishment of the Lagos DNA & Forensic Centre will improve the speed and quality of evidence collected to assist our Courts in the quick dispensation of justice. This centre is a definite boost for our administration’s Justice Sector reform programme. It shows that our covenant with Lagosians to create a safe and secure State is being kept,” Governor Ambode said.
In his welcome address, the State’s Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Adeniji Kazeem, said the centre would assist the State to have a reliable DNA database that would enable investigators and law enforcement officers identify crime patterns and suspects, and also help exonerate or convict suspects.
On his part, the Consul General of United States Embassy in Lagos, Mr John Bray, congratulated Governor Ambode and the people of the State for successfully completing the building of “the first DNA Forensic Centre not only in Nigeria but in West Africa,” saying that the development would enhance justice and progress.
Also, Lagos State Acting Commissioner of Police, Mr Imohimi Edgal, said the completion of the centre was another first by the Lagos State Government and one of the greatest moves by any state government towards boosting security and justice delivery.
He said with the opening of the centre, the State Police Command would now reopen unresolved high-profile cases hitherto frustrated by lack of solid evidence.
“I am perhaps the happiest person here today because this will enhance my job. We have a lot of pending high-profile cases that we have not resolved yet. These cases, we intend to revisit with this new centre coming on board,” the CP said.
The Federal Government of Nigeria has vowed to protect the public against any harmful effects of Genetically Modified Foods (GMO).
The Director General of the National Bio-safety Management Agency, Mr Rufus Ebegba, made the promise on Friday while addressing reporters at a forum in Abuja.
He said that though the technology had its pitfalls if not properly supervised, it remains the sure way to improve food production for Nigeria’s growing population.
Mr Rufus assured Nigerians that his agency would ensure that the implementation of genetically modified organism as alternative to improving food production was properly regulated.
GMOs is a scientific process where the gene from the Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) of a specie of animal or plant is extracted and forced into the genes of an unrelated plant or animal for improved yield.
One year after the Nigeria Bio-Safety Act was signed into law in 2015, the issue of whether or not to adopt genetically modified organism, also called GMO, has continued to generate heated debate.
Although several countries in the world including China and the United States have adopted GMO, Austria, Bulgaria, Italy and a host of others have refused the technology, raising concern for its health implications.
Belgian police have identified a prime suspect in Tuesday’s Brussels blasts and two suspected suicide bombers, linking them directly to Islamic State. militants behind last November’s Paris attacks, Belgian media reported on Wednesday.
Najim Laachraoui, 25, is believed to be the man seen on CCTV pushing a baggage trolley alongside the bombers and then running out of the Brussels airport terminal.
Earlier some media reported that he had been captured in the Brussels borough of Anderlecht, but they later said the person detained was not Laachraoui.
Police and prosecutors refused immediate comment but the federal prosecutor was due to hold a news conference at 1200 GMT.
The death toll in the attacks on the Belgian capital, home to the European Union and NATO, rose to at least 31 with some 260 wounded, Health Minister Maggie De Block said on VRT television. It could rise further because some of the bomb victims at Maelbeek metro station were blown to pieces and victims are hard to identify.
One of the suspects seen on CCTV pushing baggage trolleys at Brussels airport just before the explosions was identified as Brahim El Bakraoui, public broadcaster RTBF reported. It said his brother, Khalid, blew himself up on the metro train.
Both had criminal records for armed robbery but had not previously been linked by investigators to Islamist militants.
Laachraoui is wanted in connection with the Paris attacks. His DNA was found on at least two explosives belts used in those attacks and at a Brussels hideout used last week by prime Paris suspect Salah Abdeslam, who was arrested last Friday after a shoot-out with police.
RTBF said Khalid El Bakraoui had rented under a false name the apartment in the city’s Forest borough, where police hunting Abdeslam killed a gunman in a raid last week. He is also believed to have rented a safe house in the southern Belgian city of Charleroi used to mount last November’s Paris attacks.
The Syrian-based Islamist group claimed responsibility for Tuesday’s attacks, four days after Abdeslam’s arrest in Brussels, warning of “black days” for those fighting it in Syria and Iraq. Belgian warplanes have joined the coalition in the Middle East, but Brussels has long been a center of Islamist militancy.
The death toll in the Associated Airline plane crash has now risen to 14 and that’s because one of the passengers on the casualty list died during the weekend.
The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris disclosed that out of the seven survivors, two were in critical conditions and unfortunately one died over the weekend while the other one in the critical state had an operation and is still in critical state.
He confirmed that the remaining four are in stable condition.
The commissioner disclosed the state of the bodies of those who lost their life; he said that the dental ex-rays have been done ready for matching and the autopsies have been carried out and are rounding up the samples that have been collected for the DNA.
Scientists are reporting a significant milestone for cancer research after charting 21 major mutations behind the vast majority of tumors. The disruptive changes to the genetic code, reported in Nature, accounted for 97% of the 30 most common cancers.
Finding out what causes the mutations could lead to new treatment. Some, such as smoking are known, but more than half are still a mystery.
A tumor starts when one of the building blocks of bodies goes wrong. Over the course of a lifetime cells pick up an array of mutations which can eventually transform them into deadly tumors which grow uncontrollably.
The international team of researchers was looking for the causes of those mutations as part of the largest-ever analysis of cancer genomes.
Hidden within the cancer genome are these patterns, these signatures, which tell us what is actually causing cancer in the first place – that’s a major insight to have.”
The well-known ones such as UV damage and smoking mutate the DNA, increasing the odds of cancer.
But each also leaves behind a unique hallmark – a piece of “genetic graffiti” – that shows if smoking or UV radiation has mutated the DNA.
Researchers, led by the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in the UK, hunted for more examples of “graffiti” in 7,042 samples taken from the 30 most common cancers.
The found that 21 separate “graffiti signatures” could account for 97% of the mutations which led to cancer.
Prof Sir Mike Stratton, the director of the Sanger Institute, said: “I’m very excited. Hidden within the cancer genome are these patterns, these signatures, which tell us what is actually causing cancer in the first place – that’s a major insight to have.
“It is quite a significant achievement for cancer research, this is quite profound. It’s taking us into areas of unknown that we didn’t know existed before.
Other signatures were related to ageing and the body’s immune system. Cells respond to viral infection by activating a class of enzymes which mutate the viruses until they can no longer function.
“We believe that when it does that, there is collateral damage – it mutates its own genome as well and now becomes much more likely to become a cancer cell as it has a huge number of mutations – it’s a double-edged sword,” said Prof Stratton.
It is hoped that if some of them can be pinned down to things in the environment then new ways of preventing cancer could be developed.
It may also spur further research. One of the unknown causes of mutation happens only in neuroblastoma, a cancer of nerve cells which normally affects children, so something unique is happening there.
You are what you eat, putting your best face forward starts with putting the right ingredients in your mouth. “The same foods that are good for your health are good for your skin.
Load up on nutritious meals and snacks, like sweet potatoes, mangoes, and canned tuna. Experts say these foods will do as much for your appearance as your inner health.
• Tomatoes:- They provide red pigments and healthy benefits, which helps eliminate skin-aging free radicals caused by ultraviolet rays—in other words, protecting against sun damage. To reap the most benefits, heat them up: A half-cup of cooked tomatoes, for example, packs 16 milligrams of lycopene. A daily dose coupled with sunscreen will help block the burn.
• Fruits:- Load up some fruits in your system like, Mangoes, papaya, Apricot, are full of pigment called carotenoids, which are stored in the layer of fat directly beneath the skin and can improve color.
• Canned Tuna:- It’s packed with selenium, a nutrient that preserves elastin, which keeps skin smooth and tight. Selenium also prevents free radicals that are produced by UV rays from damaging skin cells, protecting against sun damage.
• Safflower Oil:- If you have a dry, itchy or flaky skin. This cooking oil doubles as a moisturizer. It contains omega-6 fatty acids, which keeps the cell walls supple, allowing water to reach the skin.
• Sweet Potatoes:- They’re full of vitamin C, which smoothens wrinkles by stimulating the production of collagen. Research say regular eating of sweet potatoes reduces 11 percent of wrinkles.
• Mussels. If you’re not getting enough iron, your skin will turn pale and pasty, Ansel says. The solution? Iron-rich choices like mussels. One 3-ounce serving delivers a third of the daily recommended amount.
• Spinach. Want to protect yourself against skin cancer? People who ate the most spinach developed half as many skin tumors over 11 years as those who ate the smallest amount. That’s likely because the foliate in spinach helps maintain and repair DNA, reducing the likelihood of cancer-cell growth.
The management of Dana airline on Friday said that only 34 families who lost friends, and loved ones in the crash on June 3rd have submitted their claims forms to receive their insurance payment.
Dana Air is currently under investigation after a faulty aircraft carrying 153 people aboard plummeted into a densely populated area in Lagos, killing everyone on the plane and at least six more on the ground.
In a statement, the airline said “as at the close of business on Monday, June 25, the company had received completed insurance forms for 34 of the victims, two of which are our staff members.
“The company has now made direct contact with 118 families who lost loved ones in the accident and has also made contact with the 9 embassies managing communications with the families of those victims from other countries.
“These families and embassies have been sent letters of condolence and the insurance documentation necessary in order to facilitate compensation payments.”
The documentation is necessary for the right beneficiaries to be paid the compensations, Dana Air said. The statement further added that “investigations into the cause of the accident are still ongoing and Dana Air continues to offer every form of assistance to the investigating authorities.”
The management of the airline company said the DNA samples of the crash victims have been successfully collected and dispatched to a UK laboratory for testing.
The company said that the media reports that the expatriate working in the company had all left since the accident saying of over 450 staff of the airline, most to whom are Nigerians, not one has left the company’s employment.