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State

Judge: Evidence in 1996 murder worth DNA testing

DECATUR – Evidence that was part of a murder case that sent three members of a central Illinois family to prison 12 years ago should be tested for DNA, a judge has ruled.

Macon County Associate Judge Timothy Steadman said in a ruling Tuesday that current DNA-testing techniques weren’t available when Michael and Jeannette Slover and their son Michael Slover Jr., were convicted.

The Slovers were convicted of murder in 2002 in the 1996 death of Michael Slover Jr.’s ex-wife, Karyn Slover. She was shot and pieces of her body were dumped in Lake Shelbyville.

The Herald and Review reported DNA expert Huma Nasir testified during an April hearing that testing would be “highly likely” to develop DNA profiles from items that include duct tape used to seal bags containing Karyn Slover’s body parts, human hairs found on the tape, and a drinking straw found in her car.

“Most of the items in question were not previously subjected to DNA testing,” Steadman wrote.

Macon County State’s Attorney Jay Scott helped prosecute the case. He argued in a court filing that he didn’t believe any of the pieces of evidence would yield useful DNA.

“Any DNA evidence that might be discovered would not necessarily be connected to the murder,” Scott wrote.

Michael Slover and Michael Slover Jr. were each sentenced to 65 years in prison, while Jeannette Slover was sentenced to 60 years. All three have maintained that they are innocent.

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