DNA samples requested from Kerry locals in bid to identify 'Kerry Baby' washed ashore in 1984

DNA samples requested from Kerry locals in bid to identify 'Kerry Baby' washed ashore in 1984

DNA samples have been requested from a number of local people in south Kerry as part of a renewed probe into the notorious 'Kerry Baby' case.

The Kerry Baby, also known as Baby John, was a newborn infant whose body was found with 28 stab wounds after washing ashore on the White Strand in Caherciveen on April 14, 1984.

The parents of the child have never been identified and the circumstances surrounding the murder remain unsolved to this day.

Now investigators are hoping that modern DNA-testing techniques can help establish the Kerry Baby's parentage and unravel one of Ireland's most infamous cold cases.

In January, Gardaí announced that a viable DNA sample had finally been obtained from the infant's body more than three decades on.

Baby John was found on White Strand Beach in Co Kerry 24 years ago (Image: RTÉ)

The boy's 'DNA profile' ruled out Joanne Hayes, the north Kerry woman wrongly accused of being his mother, leading the force to apologise to Ms Hayes for the distress caused to her.

The sample has been cross-referenced with the Irish DNA database but no matches have been found up to this point.

Speaking to the Irish Examiner, Supt Walter O’Sullivan of the Serious Crime Review team said: “The truth lies in south Kerry, in Iveragh.”

Lead investigator Supt Flor Murphy told the paper that DNA samples have been taken from a number of local people and that “sampling is continuing”.

The numbers involved are “in the double figures,” she added.

The sampling to determine the parentage of the infant is not random but has a voluntary element, Gardaí said.

A number of have reportedly come forward to rule themselves out.

Analysis of DNA samples takes several weeks but numerous locals have already been excluded from the investigation based on their DNA profiles.