City Desk

Judge OKs Pork Loin, Horse Blood Tests in Robert Wone Case

Judge Lynn Leibovitz on Tuesday upheld the testimony of the government's star forensic witness in the trial of three Dupont Circle housemates accused of covering up the 2006 murder of attorney Robert Wone.

Defense attorneys last week challenged the credentials and methods of former FBI special agent and forensics expert Douglas Deedrick and argued his testimony should be thrown out. Leibovitz disagreed. "I am not seeing the lack of scientific methodology," the judge said Tuesday. Moreover, she added, "Lack of methology would go to weight and not admissibility."

Among other things, the defense had argued that a t-shirt Deedrick used to wrap around a pork loin and jab with a knife in order to recreate the stab wounds inflicted on Wone's body was thicker than the actual t-shirt worn by the victim. (Albeit both of the same brand: Tultex.)

Leibovitz, however, ruled the shirts were sufficiently comparable. The judge also found no reason to toss out Deedrick's experiments involving horse blood dabbed onto and wiped off a knife in an attempt to recreate the defendants' alleged efforts to tamper with evidence in the case.

"Hypotheses ought to be tested by such experiments," the judge said. "Both of these experiments should be admitted and I will admit them."

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