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Prosecution Rests In Judge’s Murder Trial

September 11, 1985

MILWAUKEE (AP) _ Prosecutors led jurors on a trail of bloodstains, from the murder scene to Daniel P. McDonald’s garage, as they used technical evidence to close their case against the former Lafayette County circuit judge.

Technicians from the state Crime Laboratory were the final witnesses before the prosecution rested Tuesday, one week after jury selection began in McDonald’s first-degree murder trial.

McDonald, 43, was still serving as judge when he allegedly stabbed and beat James C. Klein, 31, to death at a Darlington law office June 22. Klein shared the office with William D. Johnston, who defeated McDonald in the April 2 election and succeeded him as judge last month.

McDonald has pleaded innocent and innocent by reason of mental disease or defect.

After the prosecution rested Tuesday, defense attorney William Hayes said he expected it would take two days to present his case. Hayes moved for dismissal of the case for lack of evidence.

″If ever there was a mountain of evidence (that) it was cold-blooded, pre- meditated and intentional murder,″ said Assistant Attorney General Michael Zaleski. ″What did Klein do, hit himself over the head and jump up and down on the knife?″

Circuit Judge Ralph Adam Fine refused Hayes’ motion.

In testimony Tuesday, State Crime Laboratory blood specialist Karen Doerfer, the last witness, said bloodstains found on McDonald’s ear, his car and on a metal bar at the murder scene were type A, the same as Klein’s.

McDonald also has type A blood, but Dr. David Frederick Ruf of Darlington testified Tuesday that McDonald had no cuts, bruises o scratches when Ruf examined him after the slaying.

Type A blood also was found on the front of a blue shirt prosecutors claim McDonald discarded, along with a pari of pants, near a road after the slaying, Ms. Doerfer testified.

Human bloodstains were found on half of the torn pair of pants and also on the floor of McDonald’s garage, she said.

In addition, one hair sample found in the front seat of McDonald’s car was determined to be consistent with Klein’s hair and one from the crime scene was found to be consistent with McDonald’s hair, Ms. Doerfer said.

Earlier Tuesday, Kenneth Olson, a crime lab analyst specializing in chemistry and physics testified that soil from the rear bumper of McDonald’s car was like that near a Pecatonica River picnic area where prosecutors say he discarded a jacket worn during the killing.

Olson also testified that two metal bars similar to the one found at the murder scene were found in the garage area at McDonald’s home.

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