Witness: Blood in suspect's car matches victim DNA
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A pool of blood beneath the driver's seat of a Port Jefferson Station man's Mercedes-Benz matched the DNA of the woman he's accused of killing and mutilating, a Suffolk forensic scientist testified Friday.
So did bloodstains from both sides of the sport utility vehicle's center console, the back of the driver's seat and the right rear door pocket, said Diane Shkoditch.
She testified before state Supreme Court Justice Richard Ambro at the trial of Evans Ganthier, 33. Charged with second-degree murder, he is accused of stabbing to death Rebecca Koster, 24, of Medford, before taking her body, in the Mercedes, on the ferry to Bridgeport, Conn., and mutilating it before setting it on fire.
Shkoditch's testimony during questioning by Assistant District Attorney Janet Albertson is the clearest so far that Koster met with violence in Ganthier's company. She said the odds of the blood belonging to anyone but Koster were 1 in 28.9 quintillion.
"That number has 18 zeros on the end," she told jurors.
Witnesses, backed by surveillance video, have testified that Ganthier and Koster met after midnight on Dec. 4, 2009, at a Holtsville bar and exchanged phone numbers.
After Koster's boyfriend dropped her at home about 3:30 a.m., phone records show that Ganthier called at 4:10 a.m. and they talked for more than 16 minutes.
Police say Ganthier told them that Koster tripped over some dumbbells in his garage, hit her head and died soon afterward. But Dr. Harold Carver, a Connecticut medical examiner, testified last week that she had no head injury and that she died from being stabbed in the liver and the neck.
Carver acknowledged during cross-examination by defense attorney William Keahon that no knife wound was found to a vein in her neck and that it's possible -- but unlikely -- that the injury to her liver could have been caused by falling.
Ganthier's thumb prints were found on duct tape wrapped around Koster's burning body, authorities said.