To ascertain the role of a prime accused arrested in the rape-cum-murder of a 25-year-old physiotherapist, the Vile Parle police have sent his DNA samples to the Directorate of Forensic Science Laboratory at Kalina and conducted a medical test on him.
The forensic test will confirm if DNA of the accused, Debasis Dhara, match with that of an unidentified person collected from the crime spot.
Nearly two months after the incident, a special team of Vile Parle police arrested Dhara, 27, after tracing him to West Bengal and brought him back to the city on Monday. Dhara and the victim were known to each other but they were not in a relationship, a police source said.
The police had zeroed down on Dhara, said to be an alcoholic, just a week before tracing him, said the source. The special team formed by DCP Virendra Mishra questioned more than 500 people before narrowing down on the accused. Dhara, who is from the Midnapore district in West Bengal, has been remanded in police custody till February 3.
“A school drop-out, Dhara had been living in the city for the past seven years. He stayed alone in an area near the victim’s residence at Leelabai chawl. The unmarried accused used to do jewellery work,” the source said.
He was arrested based on footage from a CCTV camera installed at Minoo Apartments, near victim’s residence at Leelabai chawl. He was identified by a person known to him.
“Dhara’s profile matched with that of a person shown in the footage and the time of the crime also tallied,” said the police
Dr Kamal Parikh, who runs a clinic on the ground floor of the Minoo Apartment, said, “All credit goes to the police. It’s heartening to note that the society cameras have helped the police.”
The family members of the victim refused to comment.
In the wee hours of December 6, residents at Leelabai Chawl had noticed smoke emanating from the mezzanine floor of the victim’s house. She used to sleep alone on the mezzanine floor while her family slept on the ground floor. The door of the house was found ajar and she was strangled with her own jeans. The accused apparently tried to burn her as several burn marks were found on the body.