May 27, 2020
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Comments for: Dechaine attorney calls new DNA evidence ‘major breakthrough’ in 24-year-old murder case

  • Anonymous

    Now this is getting interesting   !

  • Anonymous

    This reporter writes, ” Dechaine also is alleged to have confessed to the crime during police interrogation shortly after the murder, though his supporters dispute that.”

    Who made that allegtation?
    What is that person’s agenda/motivation/bias?
    What, exactly, did they allege?

    These unsupported “he said/she said” claims really bug me.
    Can’t the BDN report some documented facts beyond the
    prosecutors’ interpretations of circumstantial evidence?

  • Anonymous

    I think this whole case was botched from the very beginning. And as the years go on, some people investigating this case have come and gone. I feel that too many people have had too many hands in this case, thus tainting some evidence…….whether hearsay, allegations, coerced confessions, or actual real evidence. I feel that some evidence has been withheld, by the state, to make the crime fit the “evidence”. This case, at this point, should now center on DNA evidence. There has never been so much effort put into a case, in the state of Maine, to prove that someone did not commit a crime, as this one. There is misleading evidence everywhere in this case, and the state just doesn’t want to admit that they made some mistakes along the way. DNA should not be 100% conclusive. In a paternity test, they don’t even  guarantee 100%.

    How can rope be evidence? Alot of people have rope in their vehicles. He and his truck were found in the vicinity of the crime……hhmm…..wrong place at the wrong time? Paper found in the victims driveway…….planted evidence?? Like I said, making the crime fit the “evidence”.. In the past, investigators have found male DNA that was not Dechaine’s among the evidence. There are just too many loopholes and unanswered questions in this case.

     I am not a lawyer and this is just my opinion….

    • Anonymous

      Not sure if you read all the transcripts of the case, but the part I have the hardest time with is that Dennis was taken by police after a neighbor of the area where his truck was found called them.  Dennis was in their yard “acting strange”.  Said he couldn’t find his keys so cops gave him a ride home.  The next day the cops called his lawyer, as he wouldn’t speak to them anymore.  Asked the lawyer if they were looking for a body or live person.  Lawyer told them a body.  Asked the lawyer if the area around where his truck was parked was the place to look.  Were told yes.  Keys to Dennis’ truck were found in the back seat of the cruiser after Dennis got a ride home.

      • Anonymous

        No, I haven’t read all the transcripts. Just basing this opinion on what I read in the news. I am sure there is much more, on both the defense and prosecutions side, than we all know about. From what I do remember, Dennis was acting strange cuz he had just done some drugs in the woods. As far as the cops asking his lawyer questions, what happened to attorney-client privilege? A lawyer that would be so forth coming the day after a crime, I would be a bit hesitant in using. I’m not doubting you, just expressing my thoughts.

        • Anonymous

          I was only going by the testimony.  Pretty compelling.  He was tripping on LSD, according to his testimony.  Also testified he didn’t remember what he had done that day.  Attorney/client privilege wouldn’t have been compromised, as Deschaine was with his lawyer at that time.  You really should read the testimony.  And I am not by any means suggesting that the cops and proscecution are beyond lying about any aspect of this case or any other.  His questioning was recorded however.  Pretty damaging as far as his defense was concerned.

    • jdtex

      Next time let’s make it a “Brief”.

      • Anonymous

        Think it’s too long? Don’t read it.

    • Henderson bobby

      300 billion to one is what they say most times with DNA and only 6 billion people on earth  not 100% exactly my point. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m wondering if Dechaine had run-ins with the police prior to this case. I don’t remember hearing about it. That doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, it just means I didn’t read about it. What I’m getting at is, maybe the DA et al wanted to get him out of their hair once and for all and planted this “evidence” in order to get him off the street so they wouldn’t have to keep dealing with him anymore. Does anyone know if he had a record prior to this case??

  • Anonymous

    Guilty as charged. Burn in hell

    • Anonymous

      Based on what? If the DNA is not his then he did not do it.

      • Anonymous

        The story also said some DNA was consistent with Dechaine.  He did it!

        • I had my doubts but his DNA on the bra is a game changer.  Even if he didn’t kill her, he was doing something he should not have been!  Too bad the case was mishandled so that all reasonable doubt could be eliminated.

          • Anonymous

             And therein lies the issue.  Was he convicted beyond a reasonable doubt or was he convicted as a matter of convenience?  Guilty or not is no longer the issue.  The issue is was he convicted falsely for other reasons such as a DA making a name for himself or perhaps the jurors didn’t want to be sequestered any longer.  Either way his life has been destroyed and it is a matter of justice whether or not procedures and evidence were able to remove all “reasonable doubt” or people just wanted to ignore the inconsistencies thus allowing  another person who could be guilty to go free. 

          • Anonymous

            “The issue is was he convicted falsely for other reasons such as a DA making a name for himself …”So you’re saying the DA knew before the trial this case would drag on forever, spending a lot of my money and yours.

          • Millicent

            the way it sounds to me, is that two sets of DNA has been found, one that is consistent with Dechaine, and the other belonging to someone else – correct me if I’m wrong – but if that’s the case, wouldn’t it be possible then that Dechaine had an accomplice?

          • Anonymous

            I think 24 years is long enough for amphetamine charges…..just saying….

        • Anonymous

          “DNA was found on the shirt and bra that is consistent with Dechaine’s DNA, though Peterson said that evidence also is not conclusive because it was too miniscule to provide a complete DNA profile. ”

          So the other DNA samples (shirt and bra) weren’t complete enough to INDICATE OR EXCLUDE Dechaine.   Those samples might profile a category of white males with a similar heritage …  without  specifically SINGLING HIM OUT. 

          Now … how about comparing the DNA on the FINGERNAIL  CLIPPINGS to that from the scarf?   

          (Wouldn’t THAT be interesting … all this time later?)

        • No one who thinks Dennis is guilty seems to understand that the items that had (traces) of Dennis’ DNA, were items taken from HIS truck. Of course there’d be a trace of his DNA on the scarf, it was his scarf taken, and the killer would have traces of Dennis’ DNA from handling items that were Dennis’. Also, where there was only a trace of DNA conisistent with Dennis’, was what touched the scarf. The fact is, the DNA that was on all 3 items matched an alternate suspect’s DNA, and 2 of those items excluded Dennis altogether, the DNA on the fingernails also excluded Dennis.   People are either not understanding how DNA works, or have no interest in the facts regardless of what the facts show. Also, he was not “tripping on LSD”. It was meth amphetamine, and to my understanding, the 2 drugs are not the same. 

      • How about the other evidence?  Before you jump of a cliff for this guy read about the evidence.

        • Anonymous

          And have you read about all the evidence that points to his innosence that was concealed by the prosecutors during his trial?

      • Anonymous

        According to this article:

        “DNA was found on the shirt and bra that is consistent with Dechaine’s DNA” non of dechaine or the victims DNA was found on the scarf, is this not significant. Just curious

      • jdtex

        I guess you didn’t read beyond line #1?

  • JohnR

    IMO. Even if he is innocent he is better off now to stay in prison. This case is/was so polarizing that if he was released he would be hunted down by some redneck crusader looking to make a name for him/herself. 

    • Anonymous

      Ok  I forgot we were in the wild wild west John…jezzzzzzzzzzzzzz  Be real

    • Anonymous

       You must watch way too much T.V.!

    • Anonymous

      Innocent people are better off in prison –  now there’s a twist to the idea of justice being done! A redneck (your words, not mine) or any other crusader that delusional would have no trouble doing anything to make the news. At the rate we build prisons, particularly the for-profit ones, there’ll be room for us all in no time and we’ll all be safe from crusaders.

  • What is being done here is nothing less than Dennis’s attorney attempting to get his client off thru confusing the issue with so-called alternate suspect’s and manipulating the evidence. That means that Dechaine’s attorney is depending on clouding the issue, not proving his client wasn’t involved (which makes him just as guilty as an accomplice and just as liable) and getting him found not guilty. Any real lawyer knows dammed well that there is a HUGE difference between a Not Guilty verdict and a Judge’s vacating the jury verdict on an Alternate Suspect / Reasonable Doubt finding. That this case has gotten this far is a sad statement about how the case was handled from the beginning.  

  • Anonymous

    Didn’t girls also end up dead a town or two over from where he went to college?I watched a show that said that and the killings stopped once he was done college so it makes me wonder if he really is innocent.

    • Anonymous

      If you are thinking of the Green River killer then it was another person who was captured and convicted.

  • Anonymous

    i can’t beleive the testing isn’t done ! hasn’t it been a year since this started?

  • Would you like to spend your life in jail for something you didn’t do? How many hundreds of people do you suppose are in jail today for simply being found drunk or stoned at a crime scene?  Wouldn’t it be even more annoying to know that the authorities didn’t even check out your neighbor who already has a juicy rap sheet and who actually committed the crime?

    Is there anything a state attorney general hates to do more than release an innocent man from prison by giving him a new trial?   — Because if that man then even looks at someone cross eyed it will botch the AG’s chance at ever becoming governor. And doesn’t a new verdict of innocent put egg on the faces of the folks who rigged a trial to put him in jail to begin with?

    Is it better to have an innocent prisoner rot in jail at taxpayer expense and be forgotten than to blab about that mistakes were made?

    How many innocent people do you suppose are in jail today because they were in the wrong place at the right time?  Would a study show that at the time most of them were either drunk or on drugs?

    Who needs to drink or do drugs when some of us can already find ourselves in enough messes living our entire lives stone cold sober?

    The humble Farmer

    • Anonymous

      What state it were a lady is under investagasion for tampering with the DA an on top of there they will many new trials because of this.

      • Millicent

        huh?

        • Anonymous

          I guess you have not been watching the news its all over every news channel were she did not do the test right in the DA evedance she was doing to many in a day

    • Black Fly

      Dechaine was not convicted “for simply being found drunk or stoned at a crime scene.” He was convicted because:
      – his truck was found parked not far from where the victim was recovered (in fact, the presence of his truck in that spot is what caused police to search for the victim there)
      – his papers were found in the driveway of the home from which the victim was abducted
      – rope used to tie the victim was cut from rope in his truck
      – he emerged from the woods where the victim was later found and lied about what he had been doing there
      – he told police his keys were in the truck when in fact he hid them under the seat of the cruiser
      – the scarf used to strangle the victim matched one owned by Dechaine
      – his attorney told police they were looking in the right place for the victim
      – he spoke of his guilt to two investigators and two corrections officers

      • Anonymous

        Try reading this and tell me you still think he’s guilty.
        http://trialanderrordennis.org/books/SS-1-08.pdf

        • Black Fly

          I’ve already read it. I’ve read the trail transcripts as well. Having lived and worked in the Bowdoinham area at the time of the murder, I have closely followed the case since it began. And yes, I still think he’s guilty  .

          • Anonymous

            I too have closely followed the case and it’s funny how 2 people can read the same papers and have completely opposite outcomes….

      • Here is some other thoughts to ponder: Mark Westrum, Investigator at the time(newbie) wrote out something along the lines “I did it” thinking that was going to be his next statement, when it wasen’t, he crossed it out, that is part of the confession. I will bet dollars to pennies, the other person is in a southern state, has been convicted of child sex charges and lived very very close to Sarah, the day Dennis was arrested, he took off and now refuse’s to provide evidence/DNA to clear his name. Could be the other person that was present. If Dennis’s DNA is shown to be on her clothing, I am fully convinced( I worked for him here in Brunswick up till the day he was arrested, his green house/business was across the street from my house, I was 13) he is guilty but was not alone. I hope they either fully clear him, convict any others involved, prove for sure all guilty parties are arrested/convicted and put it all to rest. In the end, Sarah and her family lost the most of any.

  • Funny how DNA is 300 billion to one if it is in favor or the DA. If not well we just can not tell for sure . Not a lie but kinda bend the truth to suit thier needs.

  • Anonymous

    Like hundreds of others, I’ve followed this case since day one.  Since day one also, I’ve believed Dennis Dechaine innocent.  It’s obvious that significant mistakes were made during Dechaine’s trial. Rather than continuing the debate about his guilt or innocence while Dechaine’s life slips away, a new trial will clear up the questions. I, for one, hope that a new trial is granted. 

  • As I have said on several occasions, I simply do not know if Mr Dechaine is guilty or not. The way the case was handled from the beginning at times seems very suspect.

    Two things that absolutely need to remembered regarding this case: A) if Dechaine did not commit the murder, then someone else did. That person is still at large and dangerous. B) Cops can and do lie and prosecutors have been known to manipulate evidence for their own agenda. As an addendum to the prosecutorial misconduct it must be understood that in the case of such there is usually no punishment involved for the prosecutor’s office even if malfeasance is proven.

    I sincerely hope that at some point there is clear evidence DNA) pointing to either Dechaine or another suspect. The family of Sarah Cherry deserves the real truth and actual closure, not a manufactured reality.

    • Anonymous

      Cops can and do lie and prosecutors have been known to manipulate evidence for their own agenda thats because every one think that cases can be solved in an hour like on tv an it cost lots of money to do real investagations

  • Anonymous

    In the time after Deschaine was arrested and charged with this crime, an area newspaper reported that police reports stated that there were over 100 items in the cab of Deschaines truck that were either mail, work related or just basically trash.  The cab contained a random mess.  The newspaper pointed out the near statistical impossibility that out over 100 items somehow the 3 items found in Sarah’s driveway (or somewhere where her presence had been verified), all 3 contained Deschaine’s name.
     
    I was living in the area at the time.  Part of the reason I paid attention to the reporting was I thought to myself, “My god, I go hiking around the woods.  What if someone tried to set me up, to frame me, and the police would not or could not see such obvious problems with this kind of evidence.” 
     
    I want to add that other than sharing my thoughts with some friends and acquaintances over these past 24 years I have NEVER been involved with any efforts to change the outcome of the case against Deschaine.  And, I am not writing this on his behalf.  I AM writing on behalf of basic justice and basic responsibility of law enforcement to conduct themselves with integrity and honor. 
     
    Regardless of your view on Deschaine, everyone should be very concerned when the authorities we empower and we trust to have the highest standards cannot admit they made a mistake.  It has cost the State of Maine millions of dollars and the “alternative suspect” who was a convicted sex offender and relative of the victim was never prosecuted.  This whole thing has been incredibly bad police and prosecutorial work and someone in State government ought to have the courage and integrity to set things right.  A lot of Maine Governors, AG’s, Public Safety commanders, and prosecutors have come and gone in the last 24 years and this case is an ugly stain on all of them for remaining silent in the face of such strong evidence that points to a perpetrator other than Deschaine

    • Anonymous

      Very nicely written.Thank you.

    • Anonymous

      I at first thought that Deshaine was innocent.Yes there was an attempt for a quick trial and things should have been done better. The 100 items , near statistical impossibility  argument seems complete nonsense to me. I read that the mother of the girl that Sarah Cherry was babysitting   for ,found two receipts in the driveway when she returned home at 3:30. Reciepts I assume fell out a Deshaines truck when he or Sarah were getting in. Its not some complicated statistical impossibility for that to happen.
       The defenders are also suggesting that the “real” killer set up Deshaine either before he abducted Sarah or during, and the somehow placed her body near his truck some 10 or more hours later …..  it just doesn’t seem very likely

  • What about the other evidence that tied him to the murder?

  • Anonymous

    Please go to http://www.trialanderrordennis. org   and be sure to read ex cop James Moore’s books about the case…..One piece of evidence that convinced me of Dennis’ innocence many years ago is the Maine State medical examiner saying under oath that the murder was committed while Dennis was in custody…

  • Anonymous

    I’m curious how easy would it be to rub the little girls clothing over the seat in the cop car, his keys on her clothing or table and chair he sat in in the interview room? Would that leave such a small amount of DNA that it would be difficult to get a good match?Not implying this was done just wondering.
     To  me the rope is a moot point, there’s very few rope makers, and lot numbers could cover much of Maine.

    • Black Fly

      The rope is not a moot point. There are dozens of rope manufacturers making dozens of different kinds of rope in the US. If you take the time to read the trial transcripts (available at the Trial and Error website), you will find pages and pages of testimony about the rope found at the crime scene. You will learn that several pieces of rope were found. Their yarns, fibers, strands, and the types of twist used in their construction were extensively  analyzed  in the Maine State Police crime lab. The tips of the ropes were examined under a microsope. The conclusion: the rope used to bind the victim’s hands was cut from the rope in Dennis Dechaine’s truck.

      • Anonymous

        Fly, there are very few rope makers,   4 give or take.  Rope distributors buy giant spools from one place ( alot from the Philippines) and re spool it and sell it all over the U.S. If Mr Deschanine bought that rope in say 1980, most of the people in Maine had the very same rope from the same lot, likely off that dame spool, even if they bought it 200 miles away.
         Rope breaks down quickly and if it’s cut with a dull knife it destroys so much of the ends you can’t line them up.
        I have not read transscripts but I do know something about the rope business.

        • Black Fly

          1. There are more than 50 rope makers in the United States alone.  That’s right. Rope MANUFACTURERS. They MAKE the rope. They do not buy it from the Philippines and distribute it.

          2. Read the trial transcript. Your opinion is uninformed and vapid until you do. You can find the testimony about the rope  at the Trial and Error website. It is under the The Case tab. Look for volume 4, beginning at page 729 (there is more rope testimony before that page, but this is where the detailed explanation of how the rope was examined begins). Read it. Then opine.

          • Anonymous

            No thanks I don’t do recommended reading from people who are insulting then change their post before other read it.

          • Black Fly

            I know more about the trial testimony than you do, Scintillate. Read the transcript. You cannot offer an informed opinion on the police work in this case without doing at least that.

            As for rope, I’ve done more than “read headllines.” There are dozens of rope manufacturers here in the US. It’s a fact. But the number of manufacturers isn’t really that important to the rope testimony. You’d know that if you read the transcript.

            Sigh. You’ve got the volume and page number. I can’t do any more work, for you. Just read the damned transcript.

          • Anonymous

            Where does the raw material come from,?
            Because many of these companies ply it, doesn’t mean they make it.
             Hundreds of people have the same raw materials plied by various companies going under various names from the same lots of raw material.
              Did this  forensic team test all the rope all other people  in the area had just like it?

          • Black Fly

            What are you talking about? What did I edit in my post that affected your response?

            Do you really think you are punishing me by refusing to read the trial transcript, which by the way is posted on a website that supports Dennis Dechaine? What point do you think you are proving by choosing to remain uninformed?

  • Anonymous

    FREE JEFFREY McDONALD.

  • Anonymous

    Business as usual for the prosecution. Botched investigation. Check. Shoddy police work. Check.  And it  appears that all comments stating Deschaine is guilty sound like they are towing the police and prosecution line. It makes one suspicious as to how the case was really handled. Why is this case still going on if there is no doubt? Obviously there is doubt and that is why the nay sayers are so agressive in their defense of the guilty verdict.  They are wrong.  

  • Log Lady

    Dechaine’s lawyer’s spin is shameless. He trumpets the finding that DNA on one item is not consistent with his client. He downplays the finding that DNA on two items is consistent with his client.

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