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Key points of the defense case
By Barbara Vitello | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 9/29/2009 8:09 PM

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• Lack of evidence. No physical evidence linked Degorski to the scene. Authorities linked Degorski's co-defendant Juan Luna to the crime through his DNA.

• Unreliable witness. The defense suggested star prosecution witness Anne Lockett England's history of drug and alcohol abuse and several hospitalizations for attempted suicide and depression around the time of the murders made her testimony unreliable.

• Missing murder weapon. Bullets recovered from the scene implicated a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver. While Matt Wzientek testified he sold such a revolver to Degorski and England testified she saw a similar gun in Degorski's bedroom, authorities never found the gun. A firearms expert testified the bullets could have come from another type of gun.

• Mishandling of the crime scene. The defense alleged authorities did not properly catalog trace evidence from victims' clothes; left unidentified more than 50 fingerprints found at the scene, none of them Degorski's; and did not properly preserve shoe impressions that could have pointed to a different suspect.

• False confessions. Two people testified police pressured them into making false confessions, and the defense said the same happened to Degorski. No evidence linked the two to the murders and neither was charged.