This would be good for a slapstick comedy if it wasn’t so serious.
Germany’s police forces have been hunting down someone who murdered a policewoman in Heilbronn and tried to murder her partner.
They picked up some DNA from the crime scene and it turns out that the same DNA traces have been found at other crime scenes (murder, break-ins, assaults) dating back 15 years and spread across Germany, Austria and France.
A woman’s DNA
It all started sounding a bit implausible when the same DNA was found on the burnt body of an asylum seeker in France.
A man’s DNA.
Turns out that the cotton swabs they’d been using were somehow contaminated during the production process by the same (female) worker.
Now, I would have thought that – if you were into QA – you’d take samples of the swabs to assure that they were free of foreign DNA.
Fit for purpose, as they say.
The obvious culprit was the manufacturer – cries of “Let’s sue the bastards” – until it turned out that the police
a) had never specified the purpose of the swabs
b) hadn’t read the information leaflet which clearly stated that the swabs weren’t suitable for harvesting DNA samples.
Back to square one.