Police in Tampa say a cold-case arrest was possible because the suspect had entered his DNA into a genealogy database, ultimately allowing detectives to match it to a sexual assault from 14 years ago.
According to police, it was back in January of 2007 when an unknown man initially offered to help the drunk woman get home to her University of Tampa dorm after Gasparilla. But the woman says that’s where the stranger raped her in the shower, then fled when her roommate returned home.
DNA evidence collected at the time did not turn up any matches, and the case sat unsolved for years. In 2020, the case was revisited to see if genetic genealogy testing could turn up any matches. Detectives found a possible match after a search of the DNA databases on GEDmatch and FamilyTree, two services often used by people looking to research their ancestry. The lab identified Jared T. Vaughn as the suspect.
You can learn more about how the culprit was identified in a YouTube video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBOuo_eHz8Q.