Tag Archives: DNA

The Use of DNA Just Gets More Interesting

Learning more about the use of DNA as a forensic tool.
Today I learned that DNA samples can be extracted from fingerprints/fingermarks. It makes perfect sense that “touch DNA” would be deposited at a crime scene through finger prints.
The results seem to vary depending on the surface where the print/mark was left and the duration of time the finger was pressed against the surface. Just the same, even if a fingerprint/fingermark is smudged, DNA might be extracted to help place a person at a crime scene.
I am waiting to hear back from a major DNA research firm to learn if DNA can be extracted from the material used to lift prints from a crime scene.

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Arrests made in one of the Lodi, CA stabbing murders, but nothing new in the earlier case.

On Friday,January 13, 2017, the Lodi Sentinel reported that Lodi Police arrested Kenneth Vanderford, 51, and Kevin Etherton, 25, on suspicion of murder, burglary and arson with great bodily harm in the stabbing death of Alan Karl Gregor Jr. on September 25, 2016.  This is the murder that was discovered when the Lodi Fire Department was called to extinguish a fire at Gregor’s home on Vine Street.

This means that the February 2016 stabbing of Dorothy Wiederrich remains unsolved.  A television story on KOVR in Sacramento, CA implied that there may have been unidentified DNA found at the Wiederrich crime scene.  Given that there was also unidentified male DNA found on the body of Leila Fowler I offered that DNA profile to the Lodi PD.  Sadly, I received a polite reply telling me there was no unidentified DNA found at the Wiederrich scene.

This makes me wonder if I asked the wrong question.  It is believed that the unidentified DNA found on Leila Fowler’s body is not in the national fingerprint and DNA database known as CODIS, because the source was not convicted of a qualifying felony.

Our concern is that the DNA found on Leila will not be compared to newer entries to CODIS unless a member of the Isiah Fowler defense team remains vigilant and keeps shaking the tree.  I did not ask the Lodi PD if they compared any DNA found at the Wiederrich crime scene to that found on Leila’s body, nor did they say whether or not they had done so of their own volition.

In the meantime, if anyone knows any members of Dorothy Wiederrich’s family, please have them contact me at info@johnkennedyinvestigations.com or (916) 487-1670.


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Fowler Trial Gets Another New Trial Date

Defense testing of DNA and blood samples lead the prosecution in the Leila Fowler murder case to further test samples in its possession.  Those tests lead to results that were provided to the defense shortly before Christmas.  The results are important enough to potentially impact the outcome of the case.  Enough so that not only has the trial been reset for May 18, 2015 to allow for complete testing, another hearing is scheduled for Friday February 20th to allow the defense to request Isaiah Fowler’s release pending trial.

The court’s rational for keeping Isaiah institutionalized for nearly two (2) years is that the evidence available at the time of his arrest failed to indicate the presence of anyone else in the house at the time of the murder.  However, physical evidence analyzed in the interim does not fully support that hypothesis.  As a result, the court is being asked to to rethink its position regarding Isaiah’s incarceration.

The news of these developments lead to a rash of comments on various social media platforms and the voices of the misinformed were loudest.  Also loudly heard from was at least one voice who refused to talk with defense investigators during the summer of 2013 and could be perceived as protecting a potential suspect.

Everyone has a right to an opinion and so too a right to express those opinions.  Having the right does not mean that you must exercise it, particularly when those opinions are based on ignorance of the facts.



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