DNA analyst testifies in the Fabian Gonzales trial
To watch the sixth day of testimony, here is part one and part two.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — DNA was the focus today in the trial for Fabian Gonzales. He’s facing child abuse and tampering with evidence charges for his role in the death of 10-year-old Victoria Martens.
This is not a murder trial, but getting the jury to come to a decision about who killed Victoria will be critical to the case.
The state is trying to convince the jury that a fight at a BBQ between Gonzales and a woman led to gang retaliation. Therefore, an unidentified man is the real killer and Gonzales created a dangerous situation for Victoria.
Roslynd Archuleta, a state DNA analyst, said their report for the Victoria Martens’ case was 1,800 pages – six times larger than most cases. Archuleta said this is largest case she, or the state lab, has ever done.
“A swab collected from an individual’s body is what we refer to as an intimate swab,” she said.
Two dozen swabs from Victoria’s body revealed multiple DNA sources. Archuleta said that male DNA was found multiple times, however, the sample was partial, so it was not enough to decipher.
Eventually, a swab from the middle of Victoria’s back revealed enough male DNA to test. Through the process of elimination, though, the male DNA was determined not to be from any of the 38 people the state lab was testing for – also ruling out Fabian Gonzales.
The found that same unidentified DNA in multiple places on Victoria’s body. The state believes this is proof of an unidentified killer responsible for Victoria’s death.
Gonzales’ defense had several issues with the DNA that the case hinges on – including the fact several males had been living in the apartment in question.
“We’re not really too surprised to find other male DNA at a low level, in a household with males,” Archuleta said. “I would agree with that.”
Additionally, the only piece of evidence that had both Gonzales’ DNA and DNA from Victoria was a black sock. DNA from inside the sock showed it belonged to Gonzales, and there was Victoria’s blood on the top of the sock.
However, the defense pointed out it was found in a basket with Victoria’s severed remains inside – casting doubt Gonzales was around when any crime was committed. Archuleta agreed that could be possible.