A civilian RCMP DNA expert – on the witness stand Monday at the Denecho King murder trial – has testified that one of the DNA samples he looked at could have been contaminated.
The man – who testified via video from the Mounties’ forensic laboratory in Edmonton – says an anonomly was discovered after the testing of one of the seven DNA samples taken from two swords found at the scene where John Wifladt was fatally wounded in December of 2014.
He added that he could not say for sure than the sample had indeed been contaminated.
He also says he is not qualified to say whether the sample was contaminated.
However, his admission fits into the narrative at the trial by King’s lawyer Jay Bran.
Bran says he fully expects that the final DNA expert – who is to testify Tuesday – will say that the 25-year-old King’s DNA was found on at least one of the swords.
But Bran contends that evidence can not be trusted because of the way the swords were handled by RCMP.
Bran says without explanation from police – the swords were moved around inside the Sunridge Place apartment where Wifladt and his friend Colin Digness were discovered – both seriously wounded.
He also says evidence shows the swords were sent to the lab in Edmonton inside two paper bags within a gun case where DNA evidence could have cross-contaminated.
Two of the evidence personnel in Edmonton testified that one of the bags was only partially sealed.
Bran also says King’s DNA could have been transferred from public hallways or stairwells at Sunridge into the crime scene unit by emergency workers or police.
King has already been placed inside the apartment building the night of the homicide by a downstairs neighbour.
He adds there has so far been no evidence that King was ever in that unit or that there was any third person in that unit the night Wifladt and Digness were attacked.
King is charged with second degree murder and attempted murder.
In is not yet clear whither Bran will be calling any evidence in King’s defence.
The trial is scheduled to end on Friday.
Supreme Court Judge Andrew Mahar has suggested if will take him three to four weeks to deliver his verdict.