DNA taken from beneath the fingernail of the victim in a 2005 sexual assault in Fairfax is the only evidence tying Hannah Graham’s accused killer, Jesse Matthew, to the Northern Virginia attack, according to court documents filed in Fairfax County and reported by NBC29. The documents allege that Matthew choked the woman and penetrated her with his hand during the attack. Matthew has been charged with attempted capital murder, abduction with intent to defile and object penetration in the Fairfax case, and his trial is scheduled to begin on June 8. Police say DNA evidence also connects Matthew to Hannah Graham’s murder and the murder of Morgan Harrington, who disappeared from Charlottesville in 2009.
According to NBC29, the Fairfax court awarded Matthew’s defense team $2,000 to retain their own DNA expert. They have hired Wright State University biology professor Dr. Dan Krane to review the evidence.
The unsealing of documents in the Fairfax case happened Friday, March 6, two days after Matthew appeared in Albemarle Circuit Court, where his defense team—attorney Jim Camblos and public defender Jim Hingeley—successfully moved to have the trial postponed and to obtain funding for their own DNA expert. A new trial date in the Hannah Graham case will be set on May 5.