It is exactly because the State’s case against Dennis Dechaine consists of nothing but circumstantial evidence that his supporters have countered by offering scientific evidence: blood typing; DNA; the time-of-death exclusion; the complete absence of the victim’s hair, blood, fingerprints, or fiber on Dennis or in his truck. It is thus easy to overlook “the common sense argument” for his innocence: all the things a man would not do if he were guilty.
Here they are. Decide for yourself. Would a guilty man…
1) …lock the doors of his getaway vehicle while struggling to remove his kidnapped victim?
2) …take his victim across a public road in broad daylight when he could take her into the woods on the same side where he had just left his truck?
3) …with a streambed blocking the way just beyond where the victim was killed, get lost instead of simply returning to the road so he could leave the area?
4) …fleeing a crime scene give his real name to strangers when they offered him help?
5) …eager to escape, get out of the strangers’ vehicle and voluntarily enter a police car searching for the same girl he had just attacked?
6) …supposed to have tortured his victim, be unable to kill his own chickens, or even take blood samples from sheep?
7) …help the police hunt for his truck, especially if he had just used it to kidnap the victim?
8) …give permission for the police to tow his truck to the State Police crime lab in order to search it exhaustively?
9) …request and offer to pay for DNA testing prior to his trial (a request denied by the judge)?
Not likely. But an innocent man—like Dennis Dechaine—would, which is why he deserves a re-trial.