Genetic genealogy leads to arrest 5 years after elderly man stabbed to death in Elizabeth City home

North Carolina news

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WNCN) – The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, using genetic genealogy, made an arrest in connection with a murder that happened almost five years ago.

George Washington Price, 74, was found dead in his Elizabeth City home on March 24, 2016. He had been stabbed multiple times, according to a news release from the SBI.

On Tuesday, David Lee Blair, 55, was arrested at his home in Winston-Salem and charged with Price’s murder, the SBI said. He is being held on no bond.

SBI agents and investigators with the Pasquotank County Sheriff’s Office turned to genetic genealogy. They sought the services of Virginia-based Parabon NanoLabs. The company’s Snapshot DNA Analysis Service is used by law enforcement agencies across the country, the SBI said.

The newest Snapshot service uses advanced DNA testing and innovative genetic analysis, along with “sophisticated identification techniques and traditional genealogical methods” to establish the relationship between and individual and ancestors. Forensic investigators use it to generate leads and possibly identify unknown victims and offenders, the release said.

“The SBI is always looking for innovative ways to serve the people of North Carolina. We understand the role of technology in solving cases and bringing closure to families who’ve suffered tragic losses. We commend the hard work of the investigators with the Pasquotank Sheriff’s Office and the SBI agents who never gave up,” said SBI Director Robert Schurmeier.

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