Friday, 5 September 2014

Colin Pitchfork - The First Man Convicted Through DNA

The single biggest breakthrough in criminal history was when Dr Alec Jeffreys and two other colleagues were able to identify people specifically through blood, saliva & semen.  They got to prove their work in court which led to the conviction of sex offender and killer, Colin Pitchfork.  It also led to the exoneration of another suspect.  Events started on November 21st 1983 when 15 year old Lynda Mann, left her home to visit a friend`s house, in Narborough, Leicestershire.  Tragically, she was found the next day by a footpath known as the Black Pad.  The young girl had been raped and strangled.  Body fluids were found on the body but only gave a blood type.  The case ran cold and the evidence was put in storage.  It was nearly three years before the killer struck again.  The victim was another 15 year old schoolgirl, Dawn Ashworth, who decided to take a shortcut home.  Days later, her body was found in a wooded area near Ten Pound Lane.  She had been beaten, raped and strangled.  The same MO as the earlier murder.  Again, samples were obtained, but now these had been handed to Dr Jeffreys for analysis.

    A suspect emerged named Richard Buckland aged 17.  He seemed to be a little too knowledgeable about the body of Dawn, and was arrested.  After intensive questioning, he admitted killing Dawn but not Lynda.  He was tested by the scientists and conclusively cleared of both murders.  They stated that the same man killed both girls.  Now Police moved for a wide ranging DNA testing of all males in a certain area, but after six months, there was no match made.  But that was to change.  A bakery worker was heard telling people in a pub of how a colleague paid him £200 to take a test in his place.  The man had a previous conviction for indecent exposure, and claimed to be afraid that Police would target him.  This was heard by another customer who reported it to Police.  The bakery worker admitted that he did it for his workmate.  His name was Colin Pitchfork, a married man with two children.  Tests proved that Pitchfork was the killer, to which he admitted guilt, plus another sexual assault, and being a serial flasher since his teens.  He was jailed for a minimum of 28 years, and is up for parole in 2015, which no doubt will have the bleeding hearts screaming that he is now reformed.  Tell that to the families of the victims.