CeCe Moore

CeCe Moore (born 1969) is an American genetic genealogist who has appeared as a guest on many TV shows and as a consultant on others such as Finding Your Roots. She has helped law enforcement agencies in identifying suspects in over 50 cold cases in one year using DNA and genetic genealogy. In May 2020, she began appearing in a prime time ABC television series called The Genetic Detective in which each episode recounts a cold case she helped solve.[1]

CeCe Moore
CeCeMoore.jpg
Born (1969-01-01) January 1, 1969 (age 51)
NationalityAmerican
Alma materUniversity of Southern California
OccupationGenetic genealogist, consultant
Years active2010–present
Known forWorking on high profile human identification cases

BackgroundEdit

Moore was born in 1969[2] to Anthony Michael Moore (1935–2008) and Janis Proctor.[3] She studied theatre, film, and vocal performance at the University of Southern California and appeared in commercials, directed and casted advertising campaigns (with her partner Lennart Martinson[4]), as well as professional musical theatre shows such as The Fantasticks and West Side Story.[5][6][7]

Moore became interested in DNA genealogy in 2003[8] and has appeared as a guest on TV shows such as Finding Your Roots, 20/20, The Doctors, The Dr. Oz Show, CBS This Morning, The Today Show, Good Morning America and CBS 60 Minutes. She is the genetic genealogy consultant for Finding Your Roots and Genealogy Roadshow[5] and heads the Parabon NanoLabs genetic genealogical unit.[9]

Human identification casesEdit

Moore has been a key player in a number of human identification cases. In 2014, she was the genetic genealogist who worked with the Branum family on the Thomas Ray Lippert University of Utah artificial insemination sperm swap case.[10][11][12][13][14][15][16] Paul Fronczak was a newborn who was kidnapped from his mother's arms by a woman posing as a nurse in a Chicago hospital in 1964 and believed to have been returned to his natural parents in 1966. In 2015, Moore's team of genetic genealogists uncovered the true identity of the man raised as Paul Fronczak.[17] Using the methods Moore uses for birth parent search in adoption, it was discovered that his real name is Jack Rosenthal and he has a missing twin named Jill.[18][19] The real Paul Fronczak was found living in Michigan in 2019.[20] In 2015, Moore and a team of researchers established the true identity of amnesiac Benjaman Kyle as William Burgess Powell. In 2004, Kyle had been found outside a Burger King in Georgia; doctors determined he suffered from dissociative amnesia. For 11 years neither Kyle nor law enforcement assisting in his case knew his true identity, which he was able to later reclaim.[21][22] Moore works with adults who were abandoned as babies to identify their biological identities. The birth parents of California foundling Kayla Tovo were identified,[23][24] as were the birth parents of the Los Angeles area three half-sibling foundlings who were featured on 20/20 in May 2016,[25] and the birth parents of the Tulsa Fairgrounds foundling "May Belle" aka Amy Cox, as featured on The Dr. Oz Show in October 2016.[26]

As a genetic genealogy researcher for the PBS series Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., in 2015 Moore made the discovery that LL Cool J's mother was adopted. Through analysis of his DNA, she was able to identify his biological grandparents and introduce him to his 90-year old biological maternal grandmother.[27][28][29]

ProjectsEdit

Family researchEdit

Moore founded a Facebook group called DNA Detectives Facebook group for adoptees and others of unknown parentage trying to use DNA to help identify birth family.[30] In 2018, this Facebook page had 100,000 followers.[2]

As a result of discovering that her brother-in-law is a direct descendant of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings after a 23andMe test revealed unexpected African ancestry, Moore founded the Hemings/Jefferson Autosomal DNA Project.[31][32]

Criminal investigationsEdit

In 2018 Moore joined Parabon NanoLabs as head of their genetic genealogy unit and had three genealogists working for her.[33][34] Parabon investigates cold cases using genetic genealogy. In September 2018 Moore said she was able to solve about half of the cases on which she was working.[34] In February 2019 she was optimistic that most cold cases could be solved using public DNA data in a few years.[35][36] However, in May 2019, GEDmatch, the DNA database that she had mostly used to solve cold cases, changed its privacy rules so that it became much more difficult to solve cold cases. Moore said "Whatever one thinks about this decision, it is inarguable that it is a setback for justice and victims and their families."[37] In May 2020 she said they had solved 109 cases.[38]

Case resultsEdit

2018Edit
  • Her first case helped lead to the arrest in 2018 of William Earl Talbott II for the murder of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg in Washington state in 1987.[36][39] He pled not guilty but in June 2019, he was found guilty of two counts of aggravated first-degree murder and sentenced to two life sentences.[40][41]
  • In 2018, she helped the police arrest Raymond Rowe for the 1992 sexual assault and murder of the 25-year-old schoolteacher Christy Mirack in East Lampeter Township, Pennsylvania.[42] Rowe confessed and was sentenced to life without parole.[43]
  • She also helped lead the police to arrest Gary Hartman, a suspect for the 1986 rape and murder of a 12-year-old child, Michella Welch in Tacoma, Washington.[36][44] In 2019, Washington state passed "Jennifer and Michella's law" named after Michella Welch and Jennifer Bastian a 13-year-old girl also murdered in 1986. This law allowed police more latitude in taking DNA samples from convicted sex offenders.[45]
  • She also helped identify the murderer in a 1981 stabbing and strangulation of 40-year-old realtor Virginia Freeman in Brazos County, Texas as James Otto Earhart who had been executed in 1999 for the murder of nine-year-old Kandy Kirtland in 1987.[44][46] Earhart's body was exhumed and a DNA match made between evidence at the crime scene and between him and his son. Earhart was also suspected of having murdered 51-year-old Ruth Richardson Green in 1986.[47][48]
  • Also in 2018, she helped police find John D. Miller, the murderer of April Marie Tinsley, an eight-year-old girl who was raped and strangled in 1988 near Fort Wayne, Indiana.[49] Miller confessed to the crime after he was arrested[50] and was sentenced to 80 years in jail.[51][52]
  • In 2018, Matthew Dusseault and Tyler Grenon were arrested as suspects in the 2016 murder by stabbing of Constance Gauthier, an 81-year-old woman in Woonsocket, Rhode Island in a case assisted by Moore and Parabon.[53] The charges against Grenon were later dismissed.[54]
  • In 2018, Moore and Parabon helped police with the arrest of Spencer Glen Monnett who was charged with the rape, burglary and assault of a 79-year-old woman in St. George, Utah in 2018.[55] Monnett pled guilty and was sentenced to a minimum of six years in jail, although the Board of Pardons could require he serve his entire life as the maximum sentence.[56]
  • She also helped the police with the 2018 arrest of Darold Wayne Bowden in connection with the six rapes in Fayetteville, North Carolina from 2006 to 2008 (called the Ramsey Street Rapist).[57] Bowden was also a suspect for two other rape cases from 1998 to 2012.[58]
  • Moore helped with the arrest of Michael Henslick in 2018 for the murder of 22-year-old Holly Cassano in 2009 in Champaign, Illinois.[59] Henslick was convicted and sentenced to life without parole.[60]
  • She also assisted with the identification of Marlon Michael Alexander for a series of rapes that took place from 2007–2011 in Montgomery County, Maryland.[61] Alexander confessed and was sentenced to life in jail.[62]
  • Moore helped with the arrest and conviction[63] of Luke Fleming for the 1999 rape and murder of 47-year-old Deborah Dalzell in Sarasota, Florida.[64] Fleming was given two life sentences.[65]
  • Moore identified Robert Eugene Brashers (who committed suicide in 1999) as the man who raped and murdered 28 year old Genevieve Zitricki in Greenville, South Carolina in 1990[66] and murdered 12-year old Megan Scherer and her mother 38-year-old Sherri Scherer in Portageville, Missouri in 1998.[67]
  • She also helped police with the arrest in October 2018 of Michael Wayne Devaughn for the 1990 'Labor Day Murder' of 65-year-old Betty Jones, and the rape of 81-year-old Kathryn Crigler in Starkville, Mississippi.[68]
  • In November 2018, she helped the Fulton County, Georgia police with the arrest of Jerry Lee in Alabama for the 1997 murder of 28-year-old Lorrie Ann Smith.[69]
  • She helped the Orlando, Florida police with the arrest of Benjamin Holmes for the 2001 armed robbery and murder of 25-year-old college student Christine Franke.[70] Eleanor Holmes, Franke's mother, complained that police had obtained her DNA by deceit.[71]
  • She also helped the Santa Clara, California police with the arrest of John Arthur Getreu for the murder by strangulation of 21-year-old Stanford University graduate Leslie Marie Perlov in 1973.[72] Getrue was later also charged with the 1974 killing by strangulation of another victim, 21-year-old Janet Taylor in Palo Alto, California[73].
  • In December 2018, Moore's genetic genealogy unit was instrumental in the arrest and conviction of Jerry Lynn Burns for the murder by stabbing 39 years before, of 18 year old Michelle Martinko in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.[74][75] Burns was sentenced to life without parole.[76]
2019Edit
  • In January 2019, Moore's group at Parabon identified William Louis Nichols as the violent rapist of a 12-year-old girl in Hernando County, Florida in 1983 using genetic genealogy. However, Nichols had already died in 1998.[77]
  • Moore's genetic genealogy group at Parabon also helped with the arrests in January 2019 of Russell Anthony Guerrero for the murder of 30-year-old Jack Upton, 28 years before in Fremont, California.[78]
  • She helped with the arrest of Zachary Bunney for the murder by stabbing with a machete of Scott Martinez in 2006 in La Mesa, California.[79] Bunney was convicted and sentenced to 12 years in jail.[80]
  • In January 2019, Moore's group identified Jerry Walter McFadden as the murderer and rapist of 20-year-old Anna Marie Hlavka in Portland, Oregon in 1979. However, McFadden had already been executed for murder and rape in Texas in 1999.[81]
  • In February 2019, Moore's team helped the Alaska police with the arrest of Stephen H. Downs in Maine for the murder of 20-year-old University of Alaska student Sophie Sergie in Fairbanks, Alaska in 1993.[82]
  • In February 2019, her team helped Virginia police with the arrest of Jesse Bjerke for the rape of a 24-year-old female lifeguard at gunpoint in Alexandria, Virginia in 2016. Bjerke confessed to the rape.[83]
  • She helped California police with the arrest of James Alan Neal for the 1977 abduction and murder by strangulation of 11-year-old schoolgirl Linda O'Keefe in Newport Beach, California.[84]
  • Her team lead California police to identify Joseph Holt as the perpetrator of the sexual aggression and murder of both 27-year-old Brynn Rainey in 1977 and 16-year-old Carol Andersen 1979 near South Lake Tahoe, California. However, Holt had already died in 2014.[85]
  • Her team helped with the arrest in March 2019 of Thomas Lewis Garner as a suspect in the 1984 beating and death by strangulation in Sanford, Florida, of 25-year-old Pamela Cahanes who had just graduated from US Naval basic training.[86]
  • Also in March 2019, her team helped police with the arrest of Raymond L. Vannieuwenhoven charged with the murder of 25-year-old David Schuldes and the sexual aggression and murder of Schuldes fiancée 24-year-old Ellen Matheys in 1976 in Silver Cliff, Wisconsin.[87]
  • She helped identify Kenneth Earl Day as the person who raped a 53-year-old woman in 1989 and raped and murdered 44-year-old Le Bich-Thuy in 1994 in Rockville, West Virginia.[88] However, Day had already died in 2017 at the age of 52.
  • Also in March 2019, Moore's team at Parabon helped Alabama Police with the arrest of a truck driver and preacher with no criminal record, Coley McCraney, who was charged with the murder of two teenage girls, Tracie Hawlett and J.B. Beasley, in Ozark, Alabama in 1999.[89]
  • Her team also helped Montana police identify Cecil Stan Caldwell as the prime suspect in the rape and murder of 24-year-old Linda Bernhardt and the murder of her husband 24-year-old Clifford Bernhardt in Billings, Montana in 1973. However, Caldwell (a co-worker of Linda Bernhardt) had already died in 2003.[90]
  • In March 2019, Moore's team identified a body which had been found beside the James River in 2016 as Hassan A. Alkebu-Lan of Richmond, Virginia using genetic genealogy. Police did not suspect this was a crime scene.[91]
  • In May 2019, Moore's team at Parabon assisted police with the arrest of Richard E. Knapp charged with the rape and murder of 26-year-old Audrey Frasier in 1994 in Vancouver, Washington.[92]
  • Her team helped identify Jeffrey Hand as the killer of 19-year-old Indiana State University student Pam Milam who was raped and strangled in Terre Haute, Indiana in 1972. However, Hand had already died in 1978.[93]
  • Brian Leigh Dripps confessed to the sexual assault and murder by stabbing of 18-year-old Angie Dodge in 1996 after Idaho Falls, Idaho Police charged him in May 2019.[94] Moore had helped police investigate this case in which other men had previously been targeted by the police.[95] One man, Christopher Tapp, had been sentenced to 20 years in prison for the crime. Tapp was exonerated.[96]
  • Johnnie B. Green, Jr., was arrested and accused of nine rapes during the period from June 2009 to December 2010. Police in Fayetteville, North Carolina, credited Moore's Parabon team for its genetic genealogy assistance.[97]
  • Frank Edward Wypych was identified as being responsible for the murder and sexual assault of Susan Galvin in 1967 in Seattle, Washington. However Wypych died in 1987. His body was exhumed and his DNA extracted to verify the identification, which was announced on May 7, 2019. This was the oldest cold-case (52 years) to be solved by Moore's team using genetic genealogy to-date.[98]
  • Roger Hearne Kelso was identified in June 2019 as the homicide victim found inside a trash can during building excavation in 1985 in Anne Arundel County, Maryland using Parabon's genetic genealogy unit. Kelso was last seen in 1962. The perpetrator was not identified.[99]
  • In July 2019, Moore's team from DNA Detectives helped Riverside, California police identify a non-verbal man who had been found unconscious at Christmas 2018.[100]
  • The Steuben County Indiana police announced in July 2019 that, with the help of Parabon Nanolabs, they had identified the body of a woman found near Angola, Indiana in 1999. The woman was named as Tina L. Cabanaw, from Detroit. The cause of death was described as highly suspicious and undetermined.[101]
  • In August 2019, Ivan Keith was arrested in Seal Cove, Maine and charged with five counts of aggravated rape in the 1990s in Massachusetts. Keith had a history of sexual offences. Parabon had assisted police by used genetic genealogy to identify Keith as a suspect.[102]
  • Donald McQuade was arrested in September 2019 in Gresham, Oregon and charged with first and second-degree murder of 16-year-old Shelley Connolly in 1978 in Anchorage, Alaska. Connolly had been beaten, raped, dragged from a moving car and thrown over an embankment. She had tried to crawl out of the embankment but had died in the cold of the Alaskan winter. Moore's team at Parabon had helped local police using genetic genealogy and DNA from under Connolly's nails and on her body.[103]
  • 11-year-old Terri Lynn Hollis was sexually assaulted and murdered by strangulation in 1972 in Torrance, California. In 2019, Cece Moore and her team at Parabon helped police identify Jake Edward Brown as the possible killer. Brown had died in Arizona in 2003 but police exhumed his body and confirmed that his DNA was a match from the murder scene. Brown had been arrested for rapes in 1973 and 1974 and had served time in jail after Hollis' murder.[104]
  • In September 2019, Moore's team helped Florida police with the arrest of Robert Hayes who was charged with the murder of 35-year-old Rachel Bay in March 2006 in Palm Beach county, Florida DNA from Bay's murder scene matched DNA form a cigarette that Hayes had discarded. Hayes was also charged in November 2019 with the murders of Laquetta Gunther, Julie Green and Iwana Patton in a December 2005 - February 2006 time period in Daytona Beach.[105][106]
  • Jeffrey King was indicted by a grand jury in September 2019 for the rape of a 22-year-old woman at the University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware, in 1993. In October 2019 King turned himself in to the police. Moore and Parabon had used genetic genealogy to assist the police in this case.[107]
  • In September 2019, Moore and Parabon helped Colorado police identify Donald Steven Perea as the murderer of 18-year-old hitchhiker Jeannie Marie Moore in 1981 in Genesee Park, Jefferson County, Colorado. Perea had already died in 2012 and had served time in prison for rape from 1982–1985.[108][109]
  • In October 2019, Moore and Parabon helped police identify the remains of the body of a murdered teenage girl nicknamed 'The Fly Creek Girl' found in 1980 near Amboy, Washington. The girl, Sandra Morden, was born in 1962 and Police believed she was murdered in 1977 or 1978.[110]
  • 19-year-old Mason Alexander Hall was charged in October 2019 with the violent rape at gunpoint of a 19-year-old woman in Norristown Farm Park, Pennsylvania in 2017. Hall was already in custody in 2019 for vandalizing a car and the DNA from his blood from this crime scene was a match for the DNA from the 2017 rape case. Parabon's genetic genealogy had pointed police to local suspects for this case, one of which was Hall. Hall was held on $1 million bail.[111]
  • In November 2019, Moore and her team at Parabon were instrumental in helping police arrest Giles Daniel Warrick who was charged with murder and ten rapes in Montgomery county, Maryland and Washington DC in the 1990s (The Potomac River Rapist).[112][113]
  • Salisbury, North Carolina police announced in December 2019 that, with the help of Parabon, they believed they had identified Curtis Edward Blair as the killer of 15-year-old Reesa Dawn Trexler. She was found nude in her bedroom with several stab wounds in her neck and upper chest in 1984. Blair had already died in 2004 but his body was exhumed for DNA examination and police considered the case closed.[114][115]
  • Moore and Parabon helped Oak Ridge North, Texas police with the murder of Subir Chatterjee in 2002. Based on genetic genealogy and detective work, police arrested Martin Isaac Tellez in December 2019 and charged him with Capital Murder of Chatterjee.[116]
  • In December 2019, Fort Worth, Texas police announced they believed they had identified James Francis McNichols as the murderer of 11-year-old Julie Fuller in 1983 with the help of Moore's team. However, McNichols had already died in 2004.[117]
  • In December 2019, Moore, Parabon and United Data Connect helped Douglas County, Colorado police with the arrest of James Curtis Clanton for the rape and murder of 21-year-old Helene Pruszynski. Pruszynski, a radio station intern and a Massachusetts college student, was found dead in a field in 1980, naked, with her hands tied behind her back and with nine stab wounds.[118][109]
  • Moore and Parabon helped Fremont California police in December 2019 identify Charles Hudspeth as the killer of 16-year-old cousins Jeffrey Flores Atup and Mary Jane Malatag in 1982. However, Hudspeth had already died in 1999. His body was exhumed and was a match for DNA from the crime scene.[119]
  • With the help of Moore's genetic genealogy team, Florida police arrested Joseph Mills in December 2019 and charged him with the rape and murder by strangulation of Linda Patterson Slaten in Lakeland, Florida in 1981. Mills was Slaten's son's football coach.[120]
  • In December 2019, Moore and Parabon helped Parker County, Texas Police identify the remains of a young man murdered in 1984 and found in a shallow grave beside the road as 22-year-old William "Billy" Fiegener.[121] Police later identified Forrest Ethington, who had already died of a heart attack, as the suspected killer.[122]
2020Edit
  • In January 2020, DuPage County, Illinois Police announced they had identified the killer and rapist of 16-year-old Pamela Maurer in 1976 with the help of Parabon's genetic genealogy team. The killer was Bruce Lindahl who had died in 1981 and was suspected of being a serial killer. Lindahl's body was exhumed to confirm a DNA match.[123]
  • In February 2020, Parabon's genetic genealogy team helped Montgomery County, Maryland police identify Hans Alejandro Huitz as a suspect in the killing of James Kweku Essel in 1992. However, when police approached Huitz to arrest him, Huitz pulled a gun and was shot dead by the police.[124]
  • Also in February 2020, Dekalb County, Illinois police announced they had arrested Jonathan Hurst and charged him with the murder of Patricia Wilson, 85, and her son Robert Wilson, 64, in Sycamore, Illinois in 2016. Moore and her team at Parabon had helped police with the case.[125]
  • Vallejo, California police said in February 2020, with the help of Parabon's genetic genealogy unit, they had identified the likely killer of 57 year old Naomi Sanders who was raped and strangled in 1973. However, the suspect, Robert Dale Edwards (whose father had worked with Sanders), had already died from a drug overdose in 1973.[126]
  • In March 2020, it was reported that Parabon had helped Phoenix, Arizona police identify the body of young woman found in 1983 (Pinal County Jane Doe 1983) as Peggy Elgo, a member of the San Carlos Apache tribe.[127]
  • Pensacola, Florida police arrested Daniel Leonard Wells in March 2020 and charged him with the sexual assault and murder by strangulation of 23-year-old Tonya Ethridge McKinley in 1985. Moore's team had helped the police using genetic genealogy. The police said DNA from Wells's discarded cigarette matched semen from the crime scene.[128]
  • The murderer and rapist of 12-year-old Marsi Belecz in Spokane, Washington in 1985 was identified as Clayton Carl Giese with the help of Moore's team at Parabon. Giese had died in a car accident but police exhumed his body which was a DNA match with semen from the dead girl's body.[129]
  • In April 2020, Moore's team helped Delaware County, Ohio police find Daniel Alan Anderson as the suspected killer of 15-year-old John Muncy whose body was found dismembered by the side of a road in 1983. However, Anderson had already died in 2013.[130]
  • Santa Fe, New Mexico police arrested Joseph Matthew Gregory Jones in May 2020 and charged him with the murder by shooting of Robert J. Romero in July 2018. Moore's team at Parabon had helped local police narrow down the list of suspects.[131]
  • In June 2020, it was announced that Moore's team at Parabon helped police identify the murderer of 47-year-old realtor Carolyn Cox Rose in 1978 in Escambia County, Florida. However the perpetrator, Julius William Hill, Jr, had already died in prison in 2007 while serving a 30-year sentence for two bank robberies.[132]
  • Tulsa, Oklahoma police arrested Leroy Jamal Smith in June 2020 and charged him with five rapes between 1993-1995 of women aged 19–40 years old. Moore's team at Parabon had helped police with the case.[133]
  • Moore's team at Parabon helped Chisholm, Minnesota police and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension with the arrest in July 2020 of Michael Allan Carbo Jr for the murder of 38-year-old Nancy Daugherty of Chisholm, Minnesota. Daugherty was sexually assaulted, beaten and murdered at her house in 1986.[134]
  • In July 2020, Alan Edward Dean was arrested by Snohomish County, Washington police and charged with the sexual assault and murder of 15-year-old Melissa Lee of Bothell, Washington in 1993. Moore's team at Parabon had helped with the case.[135]
  • In August 2020, the Alaska Department of Public Safety announced that, with the help of Parabon, they had solved murder case of 17-year-old Jessica Baggen who was raped and strangled in Sitka, Alaska in 1996. Genetic genealogy pointed to Steve Branch who had been living Sitka in 1996. When approached by Alaskan police and asked for a DNA sample, Branch shot himself dead.[136] Richard Bingham had been arrested and falsely accused of the murder in 1996.[137]
  • Steven Ray Hessler was arrested by in August 2020 and charged with multiple cases of sexual assault and burglary between 1982 and 1985 in Shelby county, Indiana. Moore's team at Parabon had helped Indiana police narrow down suspects to Hessler or a relative.[138]
  • In 1986 the remains of a murdered teenage girl were found in a landfill in Chesterfield, Virginia. In August 2020 Moore's team at Parabon helped local police identify her as 16-year-old Christy Lynn Floyd who had lived in Richmond, Virginia.[139]

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