PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Phoenix police are not answering questions about how investigators are collecting DNA evidence from Hacienda HealthCare male staffers.

[READ MORE: Phoenix PD obtain DNA samples from Hacienda Healthcare staff week after vegetative patient gives birth]

So Arizona's Family reached out to a DNA expert to break down how the detectives could be collecting samples from potential suspects.

Debbie Epstein has more than 20 years of experience analyzing DNA. She has worked in Arizona Department of Public Safety and the Phoenix Police Department crime labs and has examined hundreds of suspected killers and rapists.

[ORIGINAL EXCLUSIVE STORY: Woman in vegetative state gives birth at Hacienda HealthCare in Phoenix]

Epstein said it's likely detectives are using Buccal Swab Collection Kits to get DNA samples from Hacienda employees because it's less invasive than drawing blood. The tool is essentially a long sterile cotton swab that is rubbed on the inside of someone's cheek.

[RELATED: Parents of other Hacienda patients concerned after woman gives birth at facility]

"Takes 30 seconds or less," said Epstein.

However, getting the results back from the lab would depend if there are backlogs and how many samples need to be examined.

[RELATED: Hacienda Healthcare CEO resigns after vegetative patient gave birth]

"Ideally, it can be done in a day," she said.

Epstein explained getting mom's DNA, and the baby's DNA will help find dad's DNA profile.

[RELATED: HACIENDA HEALTHCARE PREGNANCY INVESTIGATION: New family comes forward to talk about why they pulled their daughter from facility]

"You know what mom donated to the baby and what essentially is leftover helps identify the father," she explained.

Epstein added police will likely run the father's DNA profile through the FBI's DNA database to see if the suspect has been in trouble with the law before.

It'll be "process of elimination" to find a match.

[CONTINUING COVERAGE: Arizona's Family investigation in Hacienda HealthCare]

"In this case, the investigators might get lucky. They may identify the perpetrator within the first couple weeks, but if they don't, they could be collecting dozens of samples from individuals who had access to this person," said Epstein.


Copyright 2019 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.



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