DNA testing that caught 'Golden State Killer' leads police to suspected NC serial rapist

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — Fayetteville police arrested an alleged serial rapist using the same DNA testing that caught the Golden State Killer.

Authorities announced the arrest of the “Ramsey Street Rapist” on Wednesday.

Darold Wayne Bowden, 43, was charged in connection to a series of six rapes that occurred from March 2006 to January 2008.

[Records: DNA from tissue led to Golden State Killer arrest]

Bowden was found through Parabon NanoLabs' genetic genealogy testing -- the same type of technology used to arrest the suspected "Golden State Killer" in April, police said.

Multiple arrests have been made throughout the country this year through this technology, in which investigators can cast a wide net, searching distant relatives of an unknown suspect by analyzing the DNA submitted voluntarily to a genetic genealogy database, according to CeCe Moore, chief genetic genealogist with Parabon NanoLabs.

This allows police to create a much larger family tree than using law enforcement databases like CODIS, in which an exact match is needed in most states, Moore said.

[Golden State Killer trial to be held in Northern California]

Bowden's family members had sent their DNA to an ancestry site, and a lab in Virginia cross-confirmed the DNA and gave police the name.

Bowden was charged with first-degree forcible rape, first-degree forcible sex offense, second-degree forcible rape, second-degree forcible sex offense, first-degree statutory rape, indecent liberties with a child, first-degree kidnapping, first-degree burglary, felony larceny and felony possession of stolen goods.

Bowden, of Linden, North Carolina, was arrested at his home Wednesday and taken to the Cumberland County Detention Center where he remains on $18.8 million bond, police said Wednesday.

He has not entered a plea. His first court appearance is set for Thursday, said Sgt. Shawn Strepay of the Fayetteville Police.

Genetic genealogy "is a major game-changer" for cold cases, Moore told ABC News earlier this year, "because in a genetic genealogy database we can reverse engineer the [suspect's family] tree from their distant cousins who have tested."

"So it doesn't matter that they haven't had their DNA tested through another arrest or crime scene, we don't need their DNA," she said. "We need somebody from their family to have tested in order to resolve these cases."

Read more top trending stories on wsoctv.com: