Dna

Discussion in 'West Memphis III' started by Compassionate Reader, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. Compassionate Reader

    Compassionate Reader New Member

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    justthinkin made a request to have a new thread to discuss the DNA in this case.

    Hairs found at the discovery ditch were retested using mitochondrial DNA (as no root was present) and revealed a 97.5% match (some sources say a 98.5% match) to Terry Hobbs for the ligature hair (found under the ligature of Michael Moore) and a 93% match to David Jacoby for the tree stump hair (found on a tree stump beside the discovery ditch) and have excluded any of the WM3 as their source. Although the absence of DNA from any of the WM3 does not prove their innocence, shouldn't the presence of DNA from two other people make one or both of these people viable suspects in this crime? This is not new information, but no thread specific to the DNA question is here. So, at the suggestion of another poster, I have opened a thread and therefore a discussion about the DNA issue in this case.
     
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  3. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    As I've said before, these two hairs aren't probable cause to arrest either man (which isn't to say they shouldn't be investigated), but they still represent more forensic evidence than was ever found to implicated the WM3.
     
  4. justthinkin

    justthinkin New Member

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    CR, Nova is right about the hairs not being probable cause, and supporters may as well forget the Hobbs hair or potentially 2 hairs because no court is going to entertain that as evidence of anything. The likelihood of transfer is so great between persons in a household that it doesn't warrant a closer look.

    The defense team is going to try to bring up anything because they're being paid well. They are doing their job. However, they know that hair is meaningless, but it kept the money coming in to put out the carp saying that hair was going to exonerate the WM3.

    Now the potential Jacoby hair is a little more interesting seeing as how Stevie had not been at the Jacoby's house the day the boys were killed, at least not as far as I know.

    While I will never believe any of the parents were responsible for these murders, I do have a theory about the Jacoby hair, and how it got on that tree stump. What I'm about to write could also explain Hobbs' behavior during the Pasdar trial.

    You take any adult that's had enough brushes with the law, and they know if someone in their family turns up dead they're potential suspects until proven otherwise. I would bet both Hobbs and Byers knew this.

    While most children die at the hands of their parents, you will not convince me that's applicable in this case. I've read two or three books by FBI profilers, and this murder does not fit the profile of a parent as murderer. I know you think it does, and you also think a manhole had something to do with it too, but of course no evidence was found in any manhole, and I'm not here to argue that.

    My theory is that Hobbs and Jacoby did, that night walk in the area where the bodies were later found, and that is how at least the Jacoby hair got there. The Hobbs hair got in the ligature by transfer. I don't know offhand where the 2nd. so called red, beard hair was found. Do you?

    Just think about this for a moment. If you're TH, and you know what you know about suspects, and you know you did comb that area on the night in question looking for your son, you're likely to keep your yap shut about it because you could be putting yourself in jeopardy even if you are innocent, and even more so years down the road when one of your hairs has turned up in a ligature.

    LE is obligated by experience to look at everyone close to the boys, but I think once the boys were found, they had to look elsewhere for suspects because of what they found.
     
  5. Compassionate Reader

    Compassionate Reader New Member

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    First, sticking to the DNA, did you know that the defense has obtained permission to untie the knot of MM's ligature (the one under which the "Hobbs hair" was found) and test the area for DNA? If that area is positive for the DNA of TH, can you explain that as innocent transfer? This DNA, if present, is on the portion of the lace that was used to tie the knot. We probably won't know all the results of the DNA testing (because of the gag order) until the December hearing, but it's an interesting thing upon which to speculate IMO.

    Second, as the case against the WM3 was built on circumstantial evidence, why is it not appropriate to look at circumstantial evidence against TH? In addition to the hair, there's the footprints, consistent with adult tennis shoes, probably of a male because of size and consistent with a man's nine and a half or ten shoe (TH wears size nine and a half) that were found apparently exiting the discovery ditch. The WM3 all wore boots. The hairs and the footprints are physical evidence, although circumstantial, but both of these pieces of evidence cannot be linked to the WM3 and are much more likely to belong to TH and/or DJ.

    Then there's TH's odd behavior in several instances. Every time the police showed up to interview him, he managed to be elsewhere. He left his wife temporarily shortly after the murders. His reason was that she should have been able to "just get over" her son's death. He quit his job. His reason for that was that he just couldn't stand all the sympathy of his co-workers. The confrontation with his brother-in-law (who came to defend his sister who called claiming that TH was physically abusing her - again) is also troublesome. In his past, there's the possible abuse of his first wife and child as attested to by a former neighbor in her Pasdar deposition.

    As to your theory of the motive behind TH's actions, if he and DJ did go to the area where the boys were later found, why wouldn't TH have told the police? If he admitted to searching there, it would explain the hairs, like you said, but both he and DJ have adamantly denied being in the BB woods past the pipe bridge that night. I would think that reporting the visit to the area would help explain things. And, if he's totally innocent, why would he fear the police? If my child had been murdered, I would want to tell the police anything I knew to help them.

    I may be wrong, but I believe that the second red beard hair was just a piece of the same beard hair. I believe it was proven by mtDNA to be from the same source. I'll see if I can get a more definitive answer on that, but I don't think it's a separate hair. I believe on one slide it had been cut (or had separated) into two parts.

    There are other hairs that have not been identified as to source. However, I believe many of them could have possibly been from the boys' contact with other children and/or adults at school that day. The sources of these hairs have been shown to be other than any victim, parent or defendant. I don't know if the sources of these will ever be found, if my theory of school is correct.

    Why do you so easily discount the possibility of a parent or step parent being the murderer? What about the crime makes you believe that no parent is involved? Even you concede that most child killers are parents or friends of the family.

    Remember, leading forensic experts have ruled that there was no sexual assault, either to the penis of CB or to the anuses of any of the little boys. Why is it not possible, as I have theorized, that the original assault was against SB and was meant to punish him for disobeying and running from TH at about 6:30 pm on May 5, 1993, and the assault went too far? Once SB was dead (or fatally injured), then the other boys were killed as they were witnesses.

    The manholes in the area were never thoroughly searched. One report said that the police did search some of the sewers in the area and that evidence was found, but it was never introduced at the trial. That makes me question what was found and why the prosecution didn't make it known.

    In fact, I recently learned that one of the manholes suspected of being involved received a "facelift" for no apparent reason. Oddly enough, a significant chunk near the rim was not replaced, but the surface (which might have been matched to some of the "road rash" type injuries on the boys) was redone. Other manholes in worse condition were untouched, but this volcano-style manhole located in very close proximity to the discovery ditch, received a facelift. Strange, wouldn't you say?

    LE should have thoroughly investigated all of the parents and step parents. They investigated JMB. They cleared TM as he was out of town at the time of the crime. But they didn't even question TH until 2007. Doesn't that strike you as odd?

    I truly hope that the new DNA tests will be more conclusive as to the source of the hairs and other things. DJ voluntarily gave a DNA sample to the police. TH would not. Again, very odd behavior.

    As I said, I know that the hairs are not sufficient evidence to convict TH, but I believe more evidence will be presented in December. I only hope that the WMPD acts appropriately in regard to said evidence. I hope that they thoroughly investigate TH, and I wish that they had done so in 1993. Maybe we wouldn't be here today if they had.
     
  6. missy_g

    missy_g New Member

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    Answer me this.

    If the DJ hair and TH beard hair were just transfers, why was there NO hair from the defendants at the crime scene? They had long hair, were involved in a struggle were in a hurry etc. and managed to lose no hair? How is that even possible? Did they comb the area in the dark with a pair of tweezers and pick up all their hair and take it with them?

    Also TH did act awful suspicious after the crimes didn't he? Yes JMB acted like an ass and did some crazy stuff, but he ALWAYS gave what the police wanted. He always made sure his innocence was proven. TH isn't even helping with the investigation.

    Even though the hairs will probably never convict anyone, it will at least help the jury decide that the WM3 weren't even near that area when the crimes were committed.
     
  7. Cappuccino

    Cappuccino Well-Known Member

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    The nons make too much of the limitations of mtDNA as identification evidence. They would have a good point if we were talking about a trial of Hobbs and/or Jacoby, but we aren't. The point of the mtDNA for the purposes of the evidentiary hearing is twofold...

    1) The prosecution at the original trials said that there was a lack of physical evidence because the crime scene had been wiped clean. The presence of DNA at the scene which excludes the wm3 as the source shows it wasn't that clean after all, and yet still no physical evidence which favours the prosecution.

    2) Fogleman's original summing up used the argument that if they weren't guilty, there would be some evidence pointing in another direction, but "there's nothing." Well, now there's something, so Fogleman wouldn't be able to use that argument with current knowledge. Laser has to decide whether or not that would make a difference to a hypothetical new juror.
     
  8. Cappuccino

    Cappuccino Well-Known Member

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    The defense lawyers aren't being paid at all. They are working pro bono.
     
  9. ahoyhoy

    ahoyhoy New Member

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    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/07/28/us-crime-dna-arkansas-idUSTRE76R0D920110728

    BBM


    (Reuters) - Newly tested DNA evidence in the 1993 killings of three 8-year-old Cub Scouts in Arkansas has failed to link the crimes to the men convicted in the murders, including one on Death Row, advocates for the men said on Wednesday.

    The DNA, including materials from the crime scene, instead matched three unidentified people, furthering supporters' claims that the so-called West Memphis Three are innocent, the advocates told Reuters.

    There were no DNA matches for Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley Jr, who were convicted of the crime, said Capi Peck, a co-founder of Arkansas Take Action, a civic group working to free the trio.

    :woohoo::woohoo::woohoo:
     
  10. believe09

    believe09 Active Member

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    Hurdle one cleared.
     
  11. Silkprint

    Silkprint New Member

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    I wonder if they have ever put this DNA thru the sex offender database
     
  12. iluvmua

    iluvmua Active Member

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  13. Compassionate Reader

    Compassionate Reader New Member

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    As you read, please note the changes from the first 6/3/1993 statement to the second 6/3/1993 "clarification" statement. Then notice the attempted adherence to the police theory evident in the two "post-conviction" statements of 2/8/1994 and 2/17/1994. Finally, compare all statements to the testimonies of the certified forensic pathologists in the Rule 37 Abstract. Those pathologists are Dr. Werner Spitz, Dr. Michael Baden, Dr. Richard Souviron and Dr. Janice Ophoven.

    http://callahan.8k.com/wm3/bm_rule37.html
     
  14. ahoyhoy

    ahoyhoy New Member

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    So, this is hurdle one? Anyone have a guesstimate at how long the system's going to take here? I'm thinking at least 18 months unless (PLEASE JESUS) they get a hit in CODIS or another suspect RIGHT AWAY!!!

    I guess what I'm asking is, can a judge vacate the verdicts outright or do they have to petition for a whole new trial? Anyone have a clue?

    These boys' lives were STOLEN by crooked cops on a vendetta. They let the REAL murder-pedophile(s) stay out on the streets. In this horrific case...Can you imagine? God knows what else they've done.

    I'm not a praying person, but I am praying tonight for a hit on that DNA....get these kids CLEARED.
     
  15. Compassionate Reader

    Compassionate Reader New Member

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    Here's what I've been told by attorneys who claim to know:

    1) Unlike in the Tim Masters case, in Arkansas, the judge (Laser in the case of the WM3) cannot automatically exonerate the three at the evidentiary hearing. He can only vacate the original verdicts and order a new trial. Also, I've been told that exonerated prisoners cannot sue the State of Arkansas for damages due to false imprisonment.

    2) When the new trial is ordered, the State has some time during which to file an appeal and/or decide whether or not to retry. I have not been able to pin anyone down on how long "some time" is. My best "guess" would be no more that 45 days.

    3) If the State decides to retry, the three will remain in custody, although where is unclear. It is possible (although unlikely) that they will remain where they are. However, it is also possible that they will be transferred to county lock up. The big problem there is that they would have less protection, and there are still people out there who would like to take justice in their own hands. So, I'm not sure how I feel about that. Since the hearing will be in Jonesboro, it makes more sense for the guys to be nearby (unless they aren't going to testify).

    4) If the State decides not to retry, either by not recharging them (dismissing all charges without prejudice) or by dismissing the case with prejudice (indicating that they still believe them to be guilty but don't feel that they can get a conviction), the guys will go free. In the first scenario, they will be exonerated (except in the court of public opinion to small-minded people). In the second scenario, they will still have the proverbial monkey on their back. They could be re-arrested at any time the State feels they have enough evidence to retry them. As the original verdicts would have been vacated, legally it's as if the trials (and incarceration) never happened, so double jeopardy would not apply.

    Of course, if Judge Laser rules that no new trial is warranted (which I don't believe will happen), the guys will remain where they are and the appeals process will continue. For Damien, that will mean appeals on the Federal level. Jessie and Jason still have a Rule 37 hearing pending before the ASSC. It was put on hold when the ASSC ordered the evidentiary hearing.

    As to a new trial of someone else, that would be the decision of the WMPD. They can choose to simply leave the case open and not investigate anyone new, or they can choose to use the multitude of information that I am sure will be presented at the hearing to investigate, charge, try and convict the real killer. We shall just have to wait and see what they do. However, if I lived in Arkansas, I would be demanding that the real killer answer for his crimes.

    If a legal mind has other information, please share. I'm not a lawyer, and I could have misunderstood what I was told. Bottom line, it's remotely possible that the guys are out for Christmas, but I believe it's more likely that they won't be released until some time nearer Valentine's Day.
     
  16. iluvmua

    iluvmua Active Member

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    Let's wait and see what happens in December..... I highly doubt they will be getting out anytime soon.

    The Bible Confession is pretty damning......... IF Jessie was not even there, he sure did a good job of describing the crime scene and the victims down to a T.
     
  17. Compassionate Reader

    Compassionate Reader New Member

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    Of course he could describe the bodies. He'd just been through his trial, and I'm sure that the State drilled the story into him well. Too bad they didn't tell him enough about the area for him to accurately describe it or even point it out on a map.
     
  18. joe jones

    joe jones New Member

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    by the time he came to give that confession he had sat through the trial where crime scene photos were displayed, he would have seen all the reports pertaining to his case,

    I am sure all 3 of them know the case details inside out, whether that is because they were there and were the perpetrators or because they have read and seen all the evidence and thus know the information this way we do not know

    all I know is that there is now no DNA to tie them to the crime, but there is DNA that is present, whose no one knows as of now, and that the first trial was not fair and all 3 deserve a new trial, without the hysteria of devil worshipping and satanic rituals that were part of the first one

    they should get a fair trial, conducted in a professional manner within the parameter of the law, and then we shall see if they have a case that stands up to a vigorous examination and there is enough evidence to convict, or we find out that like many before them and many to come they were innocent and they have spent there lives in prison for something they did not do
     
  19. joe jones

    joe jones New Member

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    plus I have a pretty good idea of the crime scene and how the bodies were found and I didn't murder them I just watched the documentary,
     
  20. Sharrib

    Sharrib New Member

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    Facts of Jessie's confession do not match facts of crime scene

    1. Jessie says boys skipped school May 5, 1993.

    FACT: Boys were in school all day, so was Jason Baldwin.

    2. Jessie says boys were killed at noon on May 5, 1993.

    FACT: Boys were in school until 3:00 p.m., and were last seen alive at about 6:30 p.m. ME says time of death was 1:00 TO 5:00 a.m. on May 6th, 1993. Jessie worked with Ricky Deese until about 12:30 p.m.

    3. Jessie says boys were raped (sodomized).

    FACT: Medical examiner says no trauma to boys anuses, something that would have been there if they were raped.

    4. Jessie says Jason castrated Christopher Byers with a single swing of a knife.

    FACT: Medical examiner says that the penis of Byers was methodically skinned by someone with extensive knowledge of anatomy and the process would have taken some time to complete even under laboratory conditions.

    Update: The mutilation was not skillful or meticulous as Peretti said. It was crudely done. This is still quite inconsistent with Misskelley's confession.

    5. Jessie says that the boys were tied up with a brown rope.

    FACT: The boys were bound with their own shoestrings.

    6. Jessie says the boys were beaten with a big ol' stick and cut with a knife.

    FACT: No blood was found at the scene, and ME says those injuries could not be inflicted with out a great deal of blood loss. (This leads on to believe that the boys were killed elsewhere and their bodies dumped in the creek. This seems to be corroborated by the fact that search teams were combing the woods that night walked all over the spot where the bodies were recovered.)

    Update: Brent Turvey's Profile of the case corroborates our belief that the boys were killed elsewhere.

    7. Jessie says Damien choked one of the boys with a big ol' stick.

    FACT: Medical Examiner says none of the boys had choking or strangulation injuries.

    These are just a few of the most obvious inconsistencies.

    And...no mosquito bites found on any of the boys..Makes me think that they boys were murdered elsewhere..
     
  21. ahoyhoy

    ahoyhoy New Member

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    I heard several minutes of audio from one of Jessie's 'confessions,' and every time he would get a detail totally wrong, the detective would 'help' him remember the correct detail.

    The length of the interrogation (God knows what was said before the tape started), plus the fact that Jessie is a bit intellectually & socially disabled (if you will), made him the perfect target to be bullied into a false confession. IMO.

    I hope they get a hit soon, just to finish the suspicion of these kids once & for all.
     

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