14 May 2015

Blessie trial: DNA links to accused

5:52 pm on 14 May 2015

A forensic scientist says DNA found in semen inside Blessie Gotingco's body is 10,000 million million times more likely to be from the man accused of her rape and murder than a random person.

Susan Vintiner told the court there was extremely strong scientific support the DNA originated from the accused.

Two of the samples showed that it was 30,000 million million times more likely to have come from the accused then a random person in the New Zealand population.

She said the blood found on the knife was 10,000 million million times more likely to contain DNA from Mrs Gotingco then any other person.

Blessie Gotingco murder trial *****(NAME SUPPRESSION. OK TO USE IMAGE ON JUDGE'S RULING)*******

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The 28-year-old accused, who has name suppression, has fired his lawyers and is defending himself in the High Court at Auckland.

The Crown says the accused, who has name suppression, ran down Mrs Gotingco as she walked home from work.

It says he then bundled her into a car and took her to his home where he raped and murdered her.

Knife found

A constable who searched the apartment of a man accused of raping and murdering Blessie Gotingco was shown a knife buried in the back yard, he says.

Constable Martin Bakker today told the court he was shown a knife buried in the back yard which had been found by the police search team.

Mr Bakker said he was also involved in the search of the kitchen, where a bloodied fish-filleting knife was found.

The knife found in the back yard matched others in the kitchen.

Crown prosecutor Mike Walker said the knife was DNA-tested and linked to Mrs Gotingco.

The court had previously been told Mrs Gotingco's handbag and jacket were found nearby.

Tributes to Blessie Gotingco at Birkdale Primary School.

A photo of Blessie Gotingco among tributes at Birkdale Primary School after her death. Photo: RNZ / Kate Newton

Jury warned about case discussion

The jury hearing the case of the man accused of raping and murdering the Auckland woman Blessie Gotingco last year has been warned about the handing of a note to a reporter.

The trial was momentarily halted after the morning adjournment today as Justice Brewer warned jurors they could discuss the case only amongst themselves.

He said the note handed to a young female reporter was innocuous and there was no harm done, but it shouldn't happen again,

Justice Brewer said the fact the trial had to be paused to discuss the note was a sign of the kind of microscope the jury is under.

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