LOS ANGELES — DNA evidence collected from a suspect when he spit on the sidewalk has tied him to the 2011 rape and murder of a teenage girl and woman whose bodies were dumped alongside a Los Angeles freeway, detectives announced Tuesday.
Geovanni Borjas, 32, is now charged in the slayings of Michelle Lozano, 17, and Bree’Anna Guzman, 22.
Investigators used the rare and controversial tactic of familial DNA testing to initially find him, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said Tuesday. It allows investigators to search databases to identify likely relatives of the person who may have committed the crime
Detectives then followed Borjas 24 hours a day, for nearly two weeks, and finally collected his DNA when he spit on the sidewalk, Beck said.
That sample matched DNA from both of the victims, whose bodies were dumped along freeways in 2011.
“DNA collection at time of arrest allowed us to connect this monster to the deaths of these two young women,” Beck said at a news conference announcing the arrest.
Family of the victims joined the emotional news conference.
With tears in his eyes, Guzman’s father was the only to stand up and speak.
“I try not to break down, but it’s hard,” he said, thanking the LAPD “for all the efforts they did to catch this monster, get him off the street.”
Borjas, of the Los Angeles area, has pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, rape and kidnapping in the six-year-old case.
His attorney did not return a call seeking comment from The Associated Press.