DNA Analyst Links Evidence to Suspect in 2020 Homicide Trial

Thank you for reading D.C. Witness. Help us continue our mission into 2024.

Donate Now

On April 2, a DNA analyst explained the results of tests on evidence collected in connection to a 2020 homicide case before  DC Superior Court Judge Rainey Brandt 

Koran Jackson, 23, Tyiion Kyree Freeman, 24, and Stephen Nelson, 33, are three of five individuals charged with multiple counts of conspiracy, assault with the intent to kill while armed, first-degree murder while armed, carrying a pistol without a license, and possession of a firearm during a crime of violence in connection to the fatal shooting of 13-year-old Malachi Lukes on March 1, 2020 on the 600 block of S Street, NW. The shooting also left a second juvenile victim located in the vicinity suffering from an apparent gunshot wound to the right leg.  

The case also involves alleged co-conspirators Reginald Steele, 24, and Aaron Brown, 27.

Throughout the trial, the prosecution has attempted to connect Jackson, Freeman, and Nelson to additional shootings that occurred on Feb. 22, Feb. 24, and a second shooting on March 1, 2020. The prosecution alleges a firearm conspiracy of the defendants, in which they aimed to obtain and use specific weapons in Lukes’ homicide.

The prosecution called a Bode Technologies forensic DNA analyst who oversaw testing of green shoes and a black NASA hoodie previously obtained in a search that are believed to be Jackson’s

According to the analyst’s results, the pair of green Nike shoes were 2,000 times more likely to have DNA belonging to Jackson when compared to samples from Freeman and Steele.

Likewise, the witness testified that the NASA Hoodie interior cuff area was 48 septillion times more likely to have DNA originating from Jackson than Freeman and Steele. 

The witness also testified about DNA tested on two of the firearms that had been linked to Lukes’ homicide in previous testimony from a ballistics expert

In his cross examination, Jackson’s defense attorney, Brian McDaniel, asked the witness whose DNA had potentially appeared on the two firearms. The witness reported that Jackson’s DNA had “very strong support” to be excluded from the first firearm as well as “limited support” for being found on the second firearm.

The witness also said she had nothing to do with the original collection of the evidence in the case.

Another to the analyst there wsas, was “very strong support” for Jackson’s DNA’s being on the steering wheel of the vehicle allegedly used in the homicide. 

McDaniel asked the witness if it was possible to tell at what point the DNA sample got on the steering wheel, she said no.

McDaniel pointed out that, “All we know is that Koran Jackson touched the wheel at some point,” but not necessarily the day of the homicide.

Due to time constraints, the witness will finish her testimony later.

The prosecution also brought in the owner of a restaurant located on the 3300 block of Georgia Avenue, NW, to authenticate exterior surveillance footage captured on they day of the murder where three individuals were recorded walking past the restaurant.

In a detective’s previous testimony, Brown was identified as one of the three individuals in the surveillance footage. The detective also observed the second individual to be wearing a hoodie with a NASA logo on the back, as well as dark green shoes.

Parties are slated to return April 3.

Follow this case