Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

Man accused of murder plans on taking stand in trial; Jury hears testimony on DNA samplesSubmitted: 04/14/2014

Adam Fox
10 p.m. Anchor/Reporter
afox@wjfw.com

MERRILL - A Merrill-man accused of killing his wife and hiding her body will take the stand in Lincoln County court, according to defense attorneys Monday.

Mark Bucki, 50 , faces three charges in connection to the 2013 murder of his wife Anita. He faces a charge of first-degree homicide, a charge of hiding a body and a charge of strangling a person. Attorneys plan on making their closing arguments Tuesday. The jury will begin deliberating afterwards.

Defense attorneys for Bucki tried to dismiss the case Monday morning.They argued there wasn't enough forensic evidence to move forward, but the judge ruled there was enough evidence for the case to go to a jury decision.

--DNA and Samples--

DNA and blood samples could make the difference for the jury in the case. A number of specialists and DNA analysts testified in court Monday. Specialists said the evidence couldn't genetically show if Bucki did or didn't murder his wife.

Investigators took more than 30 samples from the Bucki property west of Merrill in April 2013. That included samples from an ATV, a pickup truck, an ATV trailer and a pair of boots. Prosecutors believe Bucki used the vehicles to move his wife after she was murdered.

Bart Nagle is a DNA analyst. He testified in court Monday that he thinks he found blood on the ATV, but he couldn't add much more information or context.
"You can't tell us if that was from a human or an animal?" Bucki's Defense Attorney James Lex asked.

"I cannot, and I cannot even really tell you if it is blood or not," Nagle said. "There are things that will also give a positive test in that presumptive test."

Presumptive tests try to prove a specific body tissue or fluid is on the sample being tested. Nagle said he found some traces of DNA on samples, but there wasn't a large enough sample to do more advanced, accurate testing.

"Some were trace, some amount of DNA, and some were zero," Nagle said.

"But some of that had trace amounts of DNA?" Assistant State Attorney General Richard Dufour asked.

"Yes that is correct," Nagle said.

"Just not enough for you to test them?" Dufour asked.

"Right, that is correct," Nagle said.

Investigators found the samples using luminol, a chemical spray that glows when it reacts to iron found in blood. Luminol is only a presumptive test and should be used in conjunction with a second field presumptive test and followed by laboratory analysis if sufficient amounts of staining are detected, according to a Lightning Powder Company publication.

Witnesses say none of the samples came back as Anita Bucki's blood.
Nagle said the evidence couldn't show if Bucki did or didn't kill his wife.

--Possible Impact from Cleaners on Samples--

Prosecutors believe Mark Bucki used bleach and other cleaners to tidy up his truck and home after allegedly killing his wife Anita. DNA analysts said Monday the chemicals would clean up blood, and they would also make it more challenging to accurately label samples when testing.

Investigators testifying last week said they smelled a strong orange cleaner in the Bucki's garage the day Anita disappeared. They also found cleaner in a room with torn up carpet. Nagle said the cleaner would make it more difficult to find a DNA match to possible blood samples.

"I'm not 100 percent sure how bleach would affect the presumptive test," Nagle said "I do know it would destroy the DNA."

Prosecutors say the cleaner at the Bucki home was CaviCide, which you can use it to disinfect surfaces. Anna Schmitz, Wisconsin State Crime Lab, testified they use the same cleaner to sterilize surfaces in their labs.

"Would that include blood samples that you are maintaining? " Dufour asked.

"Yes," Schmitz said.

"Does it do a good job?" Dufour asked.

"I believe so," Schmitz said.

Defense attorneys reminded the jury the cleaner was for surfaces and not carpets. It was found next to a large section of open floor where carpet had been torn up. According to testimony and evidence presented in the case, the section was torn up and burned the same day Anita Bucki disappeared.

She was found dead near Highway C in a swampy area in Taylor County in May 2013. Mark Bucki was arrested in connection to the disappearance and murder on May 13, 2013.

Day seven of the trial will begin Tuesday morning at 8:15 a.m. on the second floor of the Lincoln County courthouse in Merrill. The jury could decide a verdict as early as Tuesday evening.



Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 08/26/2016

- Tonight on Friday Night Blitz we will bring you scores from high school football games all across North Central Wisconsin as well as highlights from the following games:

River Falls vs. Merrill

Rhinelander vs. Wittenberg-Birnamwood

Oconto vs. Antigo

Phillips vs. Tomahawk

That will be tonight on Friday Night Blitz at the end of Newswatch 12 at 10.

We'll bring you this and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.

+ Read More

ST. GERMAIN - A brand new rental in St. Germain just opened for business last year. 

"I stumbled across the house and noticed it was vacant," said Roger Bauer.

Three years ago, with grass up to his knees, Roger knew he had a lot of work ahead of him. 

"[It was] a complete gut job, down to the bare studs," said Roger.

Starting work on a house that sat vacant for about 20 years didn't make for the most fun work.

"[It was] was miserable because it was 45 below the first night we started doing demo on the how," said Roger.

+ Read More

CRANDON - This upcoming school year, Crandon students will learn more about forgiveness and kindness as part of a new initiative.

The Crandon School District called on 2016 Wisconsin Elementary Principal of the Year Melissa Herek to help introduce some of these new practices earlier this week.

+ Read More

FITCHBURG - Investigators will try to figure out why a house exploded in southern Wisconsin.

The blast critically injured a man and caused damage to at least two dozen other homes in the neighborhood.

The 57-year-old man has significant injuries as a result of the explosion just before 7:00 p.m. Thursday night in Fitchburg.

Fire fighters say three nearby houses have major structural damage and 23 others have moderate to minor damage.

Debris from the explosion landed about a-half mile from the scene.

While the cause has not yet been determined, witnesses say there was a strong smell of gas.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and state investigators are assisting Fitchburg police.

+ Read More

MADISON - The attorney for a Wisconsin inmate featured in the hit Netflix documentary series "Making a Murderer" has filed a motion seeking permission to perform extensive scientific tests on evidence she believes will show he's innocent.

Prosecutors believe Steven Avery killed Teresa Halbach in his family's Manitowoc County salvage yard in 2005. A jury convicted him in 2007 and he was sentenced to life. Avery insists the authorities framed him.

+ Read More

MILWAUKEE - Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is promising $4.5 million for job creation and to clean up blighted property in a poor neighborhood on Milwaukee's north side where the recent fatal police shooting of a black man led to violent unrest.

Community leaders say frustration over unemployment and economic disparities underlie the violence and destruction of property that rocked Sherman Park for two nights following the Aug. 13 killing of Sylville Smith.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - New ownership will be taking over a major employer in Rhinelander and Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Oldenburg Group announced today its Heavy Equipment Group has been sold.

That includes its Defense and Mining business units.

J.F. Lehman and Company will take over control of the operations.

The company was founded in 1992 by former Navy Secretary John Lehman.

The former Oldenburg operations will be renamed Lake Shore Systems, Inc.

The existing management team and employees will stay in place, and all plants will operate as normal.

The deal includes the plant in Rhinelander and several facilities in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Wayne Oldenbug said one of his conditions was that there would be no deal unless there was an agreement to hire everybody...and not close any facilities.


+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 




Click Here