• 12 Armadillos

Obsessed with the ID Channel

I have always loved watching stories about mystery.  Growing up, there was a show called “Unsolved Mysteries” and it scared me to death but I loved watching it.  Dateline NBC and 48 Hours are other shows that tell a story about a real life mystery and usually it has the ending revealed by the time the hour is up. 

There is a network called the ID Channel (Investigation Discovery) that plays the reruns

of the Dateline NBC type stories and other shows.  Some of the shows are just ridiculous (Wives with Knives, Beauty Queen murders….really?  They have had enough beauty queens murdered to make a show about it with multiple episodes?……One show is called “Who the Bleep Did I Marry?”) 

I love watching the ID Channel.  As a stay at home mom, I am actually always on the go and busy doing a million things a day.  I actually fantasize about staying on the couch and watching the ID Channel all day long.

The other day I was watching a show on the ID channel and it was about a high school girl who was murdered in 1977.  She left a party and walked through a baseball field and was found murdered the next morning.  There were about twelve guys that were at the party that became suspects.  Over the years, different cops tried to reopen the unsolved case but were unsuccessful.  In 2005, two cops went through the files again about the unsolved murder and worked on solving it.   

The thing that was so interesting to me was that in 1977, the detectives and police that worked the murder case were very meticulous in the gathering of evidence.  They knew that at some point, the technology would be there in the future to analyze the physical evidence.  They carefully put bodily fluid evidence from the girl on slides that you would see in an 8th grade science lab.  They even took several of the grass clippings under the girl’s body and collected it as samples too.  The detectives in 2005 were very pleased with the boxes of evidence from the crime scene.

The cops in 2005 went through the evidence and sent it off to the DNA national FBI data base.  There was lots of DNA evidence because the cops in 1977 had been so meticulous.  They came back with a DNA profile of the killer.  It did not match anyone in the database.  They went to the twelve guys from the party and collected each of their DNA.  The detectives noted that it was crazy that several of the twelve guys had arrest records and even some for sexual crimes.  None of the twelve guys were matches.  Meanwhile, there was a guy who was from the same town as the girl who was murdered who was a convicted sex offender for doing the same thing to a girl years ago but the girl ended up surviving the attack.  The man’s parole officer told him he had to submit his DNA to the national database.  I guess there is a new law that requires this.  This man ignored the request for a long time.  Finally the parole officers didn’t give up and told the man, if you don’t, you are going back to jail.

He finally submitted his DNA and it was a match to this cold murder case of this young girl who was found dead in the baseball field.  Once the man realized that his DNA was a match, he said that yes he had sex with the girl earlier in the day and it was consensual.

This is where the work of the detectives in 1977 comes into play.  They collected all of those grass samples under the girl’s body.  The man’s DNA was on the grass samples.  The sex took place at the field where the murder took place. 

It was interesting because the detectives from the show said to all the criminals “You may think you got away with murder, but guess what, we are coming after you.”  The technology is there today to revisit several unsolved cases and to start gaining convictions.

The advance in technology is amazing.  Almost everyone carries a cell phone.  Even if you turn your cell phone off because you don’t want to be tracked, that can come up in a court case, the fact that the cell phone was on and then was turned off for a period of time.  If you are a criminal, it is getting harder for you to get away with crimes. 

My question for you is this:  What technology do you find most interesting?


Brenham, Texas


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