Patricia Barnes She was 61 years old when she was shot twice in the head and left naked in a ditch in Washington state in 1995. Now, nearly 27 years later, police say they have finally solved the case.
According to the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office, the cold case victim has long been thought to be a victim of a reign of terror perpetrated by the so-called “Spokane Serial Killer”. Robert Lee Yates.
Yates, a member of the US Army, was dropped as a suspect when investigators learned he was stationed in Alabama at the time Barnes was murdered. The similarities between Yates’ murders and Barnes’ death are, at least, determined to be not directly related.
However, the evidence in the case was abundant and law enforcement even had witnesses. Although the deputies were assisted by the Seattle Police Department, the case ultimately cooled down. But the witness’ description of the attacker will eventually prove helpful.
“Witness described to a detective who drew a sketch,” Detective KCSO Mike Grant told Fox affiliate KCPQ in Seattle in an interview on Wednesday. “It bears remarkable similarities to the person who was later identified as her killer.”
That person is Douglas Keith Krohnewho died in 2016.
His death was actually instrumental in solving the murder mystery.
In April 2018, the case was reopened as part of a renewed national trend to take a closer look at unsolved murders. Initial interviews with detectives were conducted and all evidence was rearranged.
“This is a case that I chose,” Grant told the broadcaster. “Some of the cases that have been delivered are still being worked on and are still being reviewed.”
After tracing a number of potential customers – including a full timeline of Yates locations over the years – and pieces of DNA evidence around the country, investigators remained empty-handed.
Private and corporate DNA labs working with KCSO record some unsuccessful initial attempts:
In August 2020, a search warrant for DNA documents was executed in Houston, Texas with the assistance of Harris County District Attorney’s Office Investigators. This is based on previously known information regarding a person of interest believed to be Patricia’s last contact. The person was subsequently removed from his role as a contributing source after comparing the collected DNA with DNA collected from the scene and the evidence.
In the end, the delegates examined about 130 pieces of evidence and discovered that three pieces of evidence, via DNA, pointed to one man.
Grant continued: “The key to the evidence was a cigarette butt found at the burial site. “Physical evidence can be one of two or three different things, but when you have cigarette butts with DNA and DNA on her body and on items around her body, I conclude that they I found the right person. ”
But authorities still don’t know who the man is.
The FBI’s Combined DNA Index System (or CODIS) was consulted, but the killer’s profile was not there. That system, yes outstanding features in cases of cold varios have been resolved in the past few years. match unknown DNA profiles with those of known offenders.
In December 2021, while working with the profile developed by the Othram lab’s “Forensic Genome Sequencing” process, using genealogical data along with DNA to build a global profile. More specifically, KCSO investigators searched to Arizona.
Grateful for being able to assist the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office in identifying the 1995 killer Patricia Barnes, 61. Thanks to the sponsorship of SAKI and the Washington State AG Office for funding.#dnasolves #runtheDNA https://t.co/hx5rjsMnyQ
– Othram Inc. (@OthramTech) March 9, 2022
After consulting with the Nogales Police Department and the Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office in Tucson, Grant and his team learned that their potential match was over. Genetics in the case were provided through an autopsy to retain some of his biological material. And as it turns out, their suspects have been through the criminal justice system.
Authorities said his photograph compares favorably with eyewitness descriptions from years ago. In January, biological samples from Arizona were compared with previously developed unidentified DNA suspect profiles. In February, the Washington State Patrol Crime Laboratory concluded that Krohne was a gene pair.
“How they connected or how they came to meet, nobody knows,” Grant said. “Douglas is not mentioned in any other reports as an acquaintance or a witness or a person of interest. I went through all the other tips, diaries and no one mentioned his name. I would suspect it was a purely random encounter. ”
[images via Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office]
Is there a trick we should know? [email protected]
https://lawandcrime.com/crime/cold-case-murder-of-61-year-old-woman-solved-due-to-dna-testing-of-cigarette-butt-decades-old-sketch-based-off-of-eyewitness-account/ Douglas Keith Krohne Kills Patricia Barns: Sheriff