BASTROP, Texas (KXAN) — A DNA sample from the unborn child belonging to murder victim Samantha Dean was sent to the University of North Texas and its center for Human Identification, multiple officials told KXAN.
Bastrop County Sheriff Terry Pickering says “The fetus was taken to the University of North Texas…which is nationally recognized for their work in forensic DNA analysis.”
UNT scientists have the ability to test DNA to determine who an unborn child’s parents are. The lab would need DNA samples from Dean and a potential father to help make that determination.
The center has another division that looks at unidentified remains.The University of North Texas also analyzed DNA when investigators found the remains of 2-year-old Colton Turner. At the time, they needed to confirm the boy’s identity.
Dean’s body was found Feb. 4 at a shopping center in Bastrop County. She had been shot in the head multiple times, documents show.
The elected official responsible for releasing autopsy information in Bastrop County is the Justice of the Peace. Precinct One JP Donna Thomson says she is waiting on final results from the private medical examiner the county contracts with. But Thomson does confirm a DNA sample from the fetus was sent off.