Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Bag of Tricks: The Murder of Roland Kuster

Putting the Pieces Together

Detectives got their long awaited phone call on Dec. 1. Minor was finally back in California; he was being housed at a prison just outside Los Angeles County. His fingerprints were checked again with a clean copy but didn't match anything at the crime scene.

By Dec. 20, a DNA analysis of Minor's blood sample had been completed on four items: the napkin in the trash can, the jacket in the closet, the front door and the fence. The test found that Minor could not be excluded. It also found that the prior suspect, Brandon, was excluded. A more intricate type of DNA testing, RFLP, was ordered.

A brown stain was on one of the knives recovered at the scene, but it was too small to test.

Meanwhile, Minor was being held on his parole violation of giving a false address. Criminalists needed to expedite a DNA test because he was due to be released soon.

"I was working alone, and the lab was very quiet and very empty and it was just me and the testing process," said criminalist Harry Klann.

Criminalist Harry Klann
Criminalist Harry Klann
The day before Minor's release date, Klann hit the jackpot. The chance of the blood samples belonging to anyone other than Minor was 1 in 2 trillion.

"It gave me the goose bumps," Klann said.

Minor denied knowing Kuster or being inside his home and accused police of planting blood evidence at the crime scene.

"You ain't got no one who saw me do it ... you ain't got no case ... why should I admit to it?" he told police. Then he laughed.