BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The attorney for the woman who accused Patrick Kane of rape said an evidence bag that formerly contained a rape kit connected to the case was found stuffed inside his client’s mother’s front door.
Meanwhile, Kane’s attorney, Paul Cambria, questioned the claim’s validity.
Thomas Eoannou said the alleged victim’s mother found the ripped evidence bag Tuesday afternoon at her home, in between the storm door and the front door. He said the bag once contained rape kit evidence, but was found empty and tightly folded.
“It contains my client’s birth date. It contains the location where the rape kit was done, and it confirms the nurse’s initials who performed the rape kit. It is authentic.”
Eoannou says his team spent Tuesday night and Wednesday morning confirming this with law enforcement and personnel at ECMC
He says the bag itself is vital to the investigation, and that this development threatens the legitimacy of the investigation.
ECMC declined to comment on this story.
Cambria says DNA evidence taken from the victim returned a mixture of multiple males, none of whom were Kane.
Kane voluntarily provided his DNA early in the investigation.
Cambria also questioned the motivation of Eoannou, saying there were no facts provided during Wednesday’s press conference that show the bag contained evidence related to the case.
If the evidence was compromised, Cambria said Kane would be harmed because the defense is typically given an opportunity to conduct their own independent tests on DNA evidence. If it was compromised, he said, the evidence would lose all integrity.
“We’ve been informed that the DNA evidence shows that there was a mixture of male DNA from the waist down, but it was not Patrick Kane,” Cambria said. “Obviously, that’s favorable to us, and we feel that it’s completely inconsistent with the claim that of forcible intercourse. They, on the other hand, may not be happy with that result. And we are very pleased with that result.”
Eoannou also requested an investigation. He dropped off the bag to the Erie County DA’s office Wednesday afternoon.
“On behalf of my client, I will be requesting and independent law enforcement investigation by a separate law enforcement agency into how this breach could have possibly happened,” he said.
Because the bag was delivered anonymously, Eoannou wants the person who left it it to come forward. He says this breach follows several others, which he believes compromises the case.
“Leaks from law enforcement about the physical evidence, the DNA, the lack of Kane’s DNA, have all been troublesome to say the least,” Eoannou said. “The consequence of all of this, has been to discredit my client in the public.”
Cambria said he’s not buying it.
“This seems like an extremely unusual claim. I haven’t heard any facts that support it. And the question I have is whether or not it’s a fabricated red herring,” Cambria said. “For someone who’s displeased with the science.”
Cambria says charges could result if the claim by Eoannou turns out to be false.
He also says he welcomes an investigation into whether the evidence bag in question actually held DNA evidence related to the case.
He says the district attorney should be sufficient to conduct that investigation.
Hamburg police responded to the allegations that evidence was tampered with.
“In regard to the information conveyed today by Mr. Thomas Eoannou, the Hamburg Police Department will cooperate with any authorized investigation regarding the handling of evidence and the procedure of such,” according to the statement. “That said, The Hamburg Police Department has documentation that unequivocally demonstrates that its handling of the evidence and the integrity of its chain of custody of evidence in this case is unassailable.”
John Glascott, commissioner of Erie County’s Central Police Services, which handles such evidence, also said all has been accounted for, including the rape kit in question.
“All evidence related to this case that was given to Erie County Central Police Services by the Town of Hamburg Police Department is accounted for and remains in its original packaging in the possession of Erie County Central Police Services,” according to the statement. “This includes the evidence in the rape kit and the packaging itself. This evidence has been analyzed and reports of that analysis sent to the appropriate agencies.”
Eoannou said he wasn’t surprised by that, and that it doesn’t change his stance.
“That begs the question, the question is, from the time the evidence was obtained until it got to CPS lab, what happened to it?” he said. “What was in that bag, what came out of that bag, and it could be a major breech in the legal system. We have an authentic bag, the rape evidence kit bag that w as torn. Something happened.