, 2021-10-05 02:00:00,
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — For more than two decades, police applied a variety of investigative techniques and chased multiple leads in the search for the man who raped and brutally beat Cari Anderson.
Detectives questioned everyone they could locate who was at the bar Anderson visited the night before. They took DNA swabs from potential suspects. They even brought in a hypnotist.
Twenty-three years later, new technology and a glob of spit helped secure an arrest.
In February 2019, the suspect’s DNA profile — created from semen taken at the scene — was uploaded into a genealogy database, say newly-released Bakersfield Police Department documents chronicling the investigation.
Detectives identified the relatives and narrow the search to the suspect’s maternal and paternal bloodlines, ultimately arriving at two names: Michael Allen Fontes and his brother, whose name is redacted in the documents filed in Superior Court.
Armed with that lead, undercover detectives began to stalk the brothers. They seized beer cans, cigarettes and other items on which the brothers left DNA, according to the documents. Then also seized spit left by Fontes in a parking lot, and swabbed it and the other items for processing by the Kern Regional Crime Lab.
Fontes was a match for the DNA profile, the filings say.
Fontes, 48, was arrested in June and has pleaded not guilty to charges including attempted murder, rape and aggravated mayhem. He has a hearing scheduled next week.
His brother is not charged.
The events leading to Fontes’ arrest illustrate how law enforcement is using genealogy to crack cases that have lingered for…
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