Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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TWC News: CMPD sexual assault cold case unit gets boost through grant
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CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's Sexual Assault Cold Case unit received help through a federal grant.

A previous grant helped to clear 120 cases with 41 arrests and 27 convictions. All which could have gone unsolved without the grant according to the department. Police said Daven Teeter, 21, was charged with additional counts of kidnapping and sexual assault. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police arrested Teeter last week for an attack in the Mission Hills neighborhood.

DNA testing connected Teeter to another sexual assault case from 2010.

"The [crime lab] obviously gave us a very rapid turn around on that information due to the critical nature and the fact we believed he was a serial rapist and very predatory in nature,” said Capt. Mike Smathers of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department. “We wouldn't have made that case from 2010 without that [DNA] information."

Capt. Smathers is with the robbery and sexual assault unit. Smathers said a new grant will help to catch more suspects like Teeter. The grant is for nearly half a million dollars and will staff five positions, including a DNA analyst exclusively assigned to sexual assault cold cases.

"Anything the Cold Case unit submits to the lab is extra, so they have to work it in,” said Smathers. “Now that won't be the case, it won't be a capacity issue.”

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said it has about 2,000 cases that can now be reviewed thanks to the latest cold case grant.

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