DNA sample helps solve carjacking cold case

Image 1 of 2

The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office says it has made an arrest in a carjacking from 19 months ago.  According to Sheriff Mike Chitwood, the case was cracked with forensic evidence.

In July of 2017, deputies say a good Samaritan witnessed a crash on Interstate 4, near Daytona Beach. When she stopped to help, she was shoved out of her car.

“It’s still to this day, it’s still draining when I think about it. It makes me cringe,” said the victim, who asked the News Station not to use her name.

Investigators say three men ditched the stolen car they were in and got into the good Samaritan’s blue mustang. They also loaded an unresponsive woman into the Mustang before taking off.

Chitwood says deputies ended up tracking down the injured woman at Orlando Regaional Medical Center.

“She didn’t want to give us any information,” he explained. “You had to use the DNA from her – to when we recovered the car – to the car out at the scene.”

Chitwood says more DNA was also found in the Mustang and that it matched the injured woman’s brother, 21-year-old Corey Pittman.   All of the lab work took some time.

“We would like to think it’s fast like fingerprints. Fingerprints you can get back in 24 hours – it’s not like that,” Chitwood said.

The victim in this case says she thought detectives had forgotten about her. She got the call from them Wednesday about the arrest.

“I would tell them, ‘I really, really appreciate it.’ It put some closure on the case and on that part of my life,” she said.

Investigators say Pittman was already in jail in Polk County on unrelated charged when they got the arrest warrant.