It was said “no intruder” because windowsill dust was undisturbed…
James Cron arrived at the Routier home at 5:45 a.m. on June 6th. He saw an undisturbed layer of dust over the entire windowsill through which a murderer allegedly entered and exited.
Davis: When you were looking at the windowsill area, what types of things were you looking for?
Cron: Signs of an intruder going through it. Disturbed dust, footprints, glass, blood, any outside debris that might have been carried in through the clothing or shoes of an intruder such as bark, mulch, damp vegetation, just any sign that an entry and exit was made through that window.
Davis: Did you find any evidence whatsoever that an entry had been made either in or out of that window?
Needless to say, the windowsill dust was just the beginning. Jim Cron succinctly summed up all of his observations:
- The type of cutting on the screen is inconsistent with the known ways to enter. The screen will pull out very easily. The cuts were not by the two latches at the bottom where the cuts normally are when a screen is removed.
- The knife in the butcher block is inconsistent with a burglar that just came in and cut a screen. It’s equivalent to coming in with one knife, putting it up and looking for another knife to commit the stabbings.
- There was a lot of jewelry and property (purse, wallet, wristwatch) lying in plain view, and none of this was disturbed or touched.
- The wounds of the two boys were approximately the same, that is deep, penetrating wounds. The wounds to the defendant were dramatically different.
- I was told that the intruder didn’t say anything. This is unusual. I have never worked an offense where somebody was fighting with a live victim, especially a man against a woman, to where vulgarity was not used, as well as a lot of threats.
- To fight an assailant, there should have been some cast-off blood from flailing of the arms and the movement, and I didn’t find any cast-off blood on the glass table top, on walls, arm level, high up.
- There were no footprints other than the bare footprints. There were no shoe or boot prints present.
- There was no trail of bloody footprints leading across the kitchen. If the defendant had been stabbed either in the kitchen near the family room, or in the family room and bleeding like she was, there should have been bloody footprints. There were a lot of bloody footprints by the kitchen sink.
- The utility room door leading to the garage, there was blood dripping down that door, but no blood in the garage.
- We went over the garage floor, the door, the point of entry or exit, the window, and found no traces of blood, animal or human.
- The fact that the gate was so difficult to open and close is inconsistent that someone would have committed a crime like this and gone to the great care of shutting a gate behind him and latching it.
(James Cron, Sec. 2175
(James Cron, Sec. 2421-2424)
Alan Brantley, an F.B.I special supervisory agent with the Center for the Analysis of Violent Crimes, offered testimony about risk factors which generally deter intruders.
- The Routier residence was surrounded by other homes on all sides.
- A vehicle was in front of the house, suggesting that there may be somebody home.
- People sleeping downstairs. Someone coming around to the back of the house certainly would have been able to see that there was light emanating from inside.
- What you are confronting almost immediately is an extremely large animal cage, as well as animal bowls right outside the window. A dog cannot only confront the would-be offender, but can also alert on the fact that someone is there.
- As many personal effects that are in that garage, it’s a very narrow route. For someone to negotiate through that area and not knock into something or not knock something over, that is a factor. (Darin described the garage as “jam packed full.”)
- As you proceed in, again, if you consider that it was dark up until the time that he got into maybe the utility room or the kitchen, that was also considered.
- The offender focused on the children, assaulted them first. This is very contradictory because they generally attempt to limit their risks by dispatching the adult first.
- If an offender had rape in mind, he would want the children alive. It’s the threat of harm to the children that they use to control the adult female.
- Instead of running away from the development, the offender seems to run back into the development again, which might increase his risk of being seen or confronted by others.
(Alan Brantley, Sec. 3661-3675)
The defense’s cross-exam of Cron begins in Section 2311 of the transcript. For the most part, it consisted of Mulder making fun of Cron’s eyesight and repeatedly calling him a “fingerprint man” rather than the crime scene investigator that he was, with 39 years of experience under his belt, no less. Alan Brantley’s cross-exam begins in Section 3702. Mulder baited him about his poor handwriting and the crime rate in Washington, D.C. At one point, he derisively referred to Brantley as “Mr. Analyst”, earning an admonishment from Judge Tolle. Darlie’s team did the best they could, but there just wasn’t much to work with. Her guilt was so obvious that the defense’s only defense was smoke, mirrors, and hubris.
“It was said no intruder because the mulch wasn’t disturbed. It was said no intruder because the windowsill dust wasn’t disturbed. They convict a mother of murder because of a silly string video? There should be blood spray on the backsplash if I cut my throat at the sink.” Are you seeing a pattern here? Darlie, along with many of her supporters, prefer to isolate one piece of evidence to convince the reader of a rush to judgment. But, of course, the proper conclusion cannot ever be reached by placing one piece of evidence in a vacuum. As Jim Cron said, it wasn’t any one thing, it was everything.