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Sherry Black

SOUTH SALT LAKE — Police here are exploring a new avenue for possible clues in the death of Sherry Black, the mother-in-law of Larry H. Miller Group CEO Greg Miller.

Earlier this month, Sorenson Forensics was certified to use a new test that determines a person's ethnicity based on their DNA, said South Salt Lake police detective Gary Keller.

Detectives would like to use that new technology in the Sherry Black investigation.

The Sorenson DNA test investigators want to run on the evidence was originally designed as an ancestry test. By analyzing the blood, detectives may get an idea what the alleged attacker looks like.

"There are similar genetic ancestry tests, but none that target the forensic market and forensic-type specimens — that is the key," said Lars Mourtinsen, with Sorenson Forensics.

Mourtinsen says the DNA can trace ancestry from five population groups: African, Asian, Indian subcontinent, indigenous Americans and Western Europeans.

Black, a 64-year-old book dealer, was found dead at the family's business, B&W Billiards and Books, 3466 S. 700 East, on Nov. 30, 2010.

Last month, police revealed that blood DNA from the suspect had been collected from the crime scene. The blood was believed to be from the hand of Black's killer, who was believed to be male.

Earlier, police had announced that an Armani Exchange belt, with a 36-38 inch waist, was recovered from the crime scene. The belt had "AX" on the buckle and the number "323" on the inside of the buckle.

Anyone with information on the case can call police at 801-412-3633.

Since 2006, Sorenson Forensics has been responsible for solving several high profile cold cases in Utah.

Last year, the company helped Salt Lake police make an arrest in the 20-year-old homicide of a woman whose body was found under the old North Temple viaduct near 400 West. In 2007, Sorenson helped solve the 1974 murder of a BYU coed whose body was found in Big Cottonwood Canyon.

Contributing: Sandra Yi

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: DNewsCrimeTeam