Monday, November 06, 2006

DNA unit to hunt down rapists

SUN-TIMES

Seven of the Chicago Police Department's most experienced sex-crimes detectives are part of a new DNA squad that will specialize in chasing rape suspects.
Such a DNA unit was first suggested several years ago when Chicago Police officials saw how DNA -- which gives the ability to scientifically link a crime scene to a suspect -- was going to affect investigations.

And it has -- in 2003, there were 174 DNA hits for cops to chase; in 2005, that number stood at 897.

The number of hits has soared, in general, because the statewide DNA database is swelling each year as more felons are required to submit DNA samples.

The hits include robberies, burglaries and homicides, and the newly formed unit will not be limited to sexual assault cases. But the majority of them are criminal sexual assaults, in part because of a fund-raising effort that helped get old rape kits tested.

And that means the department needed a particular kind of detective for the unit, said Chicago Police Chief of Detectives Maria Maher.

"They're all seasoned sex offender detectives," Maher said. "They know how to handle [the cases]. They're compassionate and have good clearance rates. They know how to talk to offenders, too."

The seven detectives will join three police officers in the new unit, which will be supervised by a sergeant.

The detectives come from all over the city and have years of experience working with victims of sexual assault and using DNA to secure charges against rapists, including some serial attackers.

They say years of experience has taught them how to approach victims, many of whom are shocked when they answer the door and see a cop standing there.

It's often painful to re-live the horror of the attack, and they are often reluctant to talk. Sometimes they're just surprised to find out anyone was still working on the case.


'Different type of crime'
One key piece of the work is figuring out if the named offender is a true suspect in the crime; just because his DNA is at a crime scene doesn't mean he did the crime, the detectives said.
Detectives need to track down the victims, witnesses and the suspected offender to piece the case back together.

"You have to be creative," said Sgt. Tony Kuta, who is on loan to the group and has worked several rape patterns on the South Side. "You have to be tenacious."

"It's back to good old-fashioned police work," added Detective Rita Mischka, formerly of the Harrison Area. "Knocking on doors."

Smaller units in the detective areas do this kind of work. But a typical workload at the area would also include following new cases and processing sexual offenders who have failed to register.

Recently -- after having just met with local advocates for rape victims -- the team said they looked forward to the narrow focus that will allow them to clear more of these cases. It's rewarding -- especially for the victims who were never believed in the first place.

"It's a different type of crime," said Detective Charles Morgan, a 10-year veteran. "It's a personal type of crime . . . a personal violation of a human body."

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Who were the lucky few chosen for the unit?

Anonymous said...

Jeff Roberts
Gil Elizondo
Charles Morgan

That's all the ones I know, all decent guys.

Anonymous said...

Kuta was suppose to get the unit,but a clout heavy female with no street experience got it instead.But Kuta had to set it up for her cause she does'nt know how.

Anonymous said...

"You have to be creative," said Sgt. Tony Kuta, who is on loan to the group and has worked several rape patterns on the South Side. "You have to be tenacious."

Creative! Wow you have to track down your victim and find out which prison the offender is in to go interview him. That definately takes creativity.
The only thing Sgt. Tony Kuta is tenacious about are his many and often martini lunches.

Anonymous said...

elizondo is a freaking goof

Anonymous said...

What! No women in the unit?

Anonymous said...

For your information the female Sgt. running the unit set it up, Sgt Kuta was just filling in while Sgt. was on Furlo and did not set up the unit but was giving a helping hand supervising during furlo, get your facts straight before you open you pie hole.

Anonymous said...

Ya, you think it was so simple to track down your victim then why wasn't it done by the original investigator, shows how simple minded you are and shows what type of detective you are in the inability to understand.

You must be working SVU as a diaper dick.

wessside dick said...

To 4:00:00 PM: You are a jealous, ignorant idiot.

Sgt. KW is the best and knows her DNA. She also takes care of her people and has a sense of humor, unlike you.

To 8:02:00 PM:

Wrong, you have to track down the "Ho" victim that made the BS report 5 or so years ago who has 10 different names and addresses. Then you have to use "creativity" to get her to sign a refusal because she had 3 different spooge profiles in her "bagina" from her "clients", none of them being offenders in the first place.

Clear that! Now that's creativity! Obviously you have none and are probably a bitter dick who got stuck in SVU because you have the personality of the spooge mentioned in the previous paragraph.

Learn how to talk to people and maybe they'll let you canvass someday, know-it-all.

Anonymous said...

This is just great. A scene dick in some area goes to the scene, makes sure that all the evidence possible is collected, interviews the victim and witnesses, submits the evidence, and works his ass off trying to solve the case while he/she waits the year (if we are lucky) for the DNA results to come back. Then, once the results are in and the offender is identified through DNA, a specialized unit swoops in, grabs the offender, calls felony review, and tells the bosses, and probabley the news media, what a great job they did.

It's okay, we're just another cog in the wheel of justice, that case wasn't really mine, it was the Chicago Police Department's. Exactly this mentallity is part of the problem with our Detective Division, not part of the solution.

Anonymous said...

As a p/o and my first time reading this blog...you guys picked up where our know-it-all p/o's left off. Thanks fellas!

Anonymous said...

There' a woman in the unit.

Ron Skrip.

Anonymous said...

Another "Elite Unit." Give me a fucking break.

Detectives chasing down old whores to ccx cases. Fuck that.

These guys go there to work 4 1/2 days in a row instead of six like the rest of us working stiffs.

I guess working six day weeks and charging fuckers with homicide doesn't make you "elite" anything.

Anonymous said...

To Wesside dick:

Clear what? The whore doesn't what to do shit 5 years later.

Getting refusals doesn't make you a good dick.

What? Are you one of these dicks thats actually worried about your clearance rate?

Look at me Maria.

Anonymous said...

Ron Skrip is a nitwit....

Please keep in mind that this is an open blog
that can and is read by people other than Chicago Police Officers.