DNA Testing on Kustok Evidence Expected to Begin
Allan Kustok's defense lawyer worries testing of pillow, pillowcase, clothes and the gun will destroy the blood evidence.
A judge will allow DNA testing of blood-splattered evidence taken from the bedroom where Jeanie Kustok was shot, though her husband's defense lawyers fear the evidence will be destroyed in the process.
Allan Kustok is accused of shooting his wife in their Orland Park home on Sept. 29, 2010. He's charged with murder.
Judge John J. Hynes accepted a request Monday by the state to perform tests that would result in “DNA consumption.” In other words, testing to determine whose blood is on several items found in the Kustoks’ bedroom will likely destroy the blood samples.
Among the items that will be tested are a pillow, pillowcase, pair of men’s glasses, a pair of shorts, a grey t-shirt and a .357 Magnum handgun found at the scene.
Defense attorney Ernest DiBenedetto asked for photographs of the blood-splattered items before tests were performed. He expressed concern that destroying samples might get in the way of what experts could later observe about the blood, and if that lack of observation might limit information presented in the case.
“What’s more intriguing to me is where did the blood land, in what patterns, and what does that indicate about what happened,” DiBenedetto said after Monday’s hearing. “Destroying the samples might also interfere with the prosecution’s case.”
Assistant state’s attorney Jennifer Gonzalez said during the hearing that the crime lab doesn’t regularly photograph evidence before tests are performed, and usually doesn’t let outside forensic experts in to observe the testing.
Hynes pointed out that the testing requested by the state is common.
“There might not be a remedy for what happens to the blood samples when they are tested,” Hynes said before granting the motion.
Gonzalez said the testing could yield results by late September, and that the results could help bring discovery to a close. Police reports that still have not been turned over to the defense could also be forthcoming with the test results, DiBenedetto said.
Kustok is scheduled to be in court next on Sept. 28–one day before the one-year anniversary of Jeanie’s death.