25 Investigates: Prosecutors say taillight DNA evidence implicates Karen Read

Prosecutors this week revealed that DNA evidence implicates Karen Read in the death of Boston Police Officer John O’Keefe, in Canton, MA.

25 Investigates has also learned the U.S. Attorney’s office for Massachusetts has turned over findings from a federal probe that involves witnesses and law enforcement in the murder trial of Read.

Read is accused of backing over her boyfriend, Boston Police Officer John O’Keefe, in Canton, MA, and leaving him to die in a January 2022 blizzard.

She was charged with second-degree murder, motor vehicle manslaughter, and leaving the scene of a collision in connection with O’Keefe’s death.

On Wednesday, a new filing from the prosecution offered additional details.

It says O’Keefe’s DNA has been found on Read’s broken taillight and that testing found that tiny pieces of taillight discovered in his clothing are consistent with broken pieces from Read’s taillight.

The filing reads: “Through trace analysis and forensic testing, the Massachusetts State Police Crime Laboratory discovered the victim’s DNA present on the broken taillight and microscopic pieces of red and clear apparent plastic located in the victim’s clothing. Comparison testing was conducted, and the results demonstrate that the microscopic pieces of red and clear plastic are consistent with the broken pieces of plastic from the defendant’s right rear taillight.”

Read’s lawyers declined comment Thursday.

Read’s lawyers claim she is being framed in a massive cover-up, and that feds have been investigating the probe into O’Keefe’s death.

It’s unclear exactly who the feds are investigating or why.

In a series of 2023 letters between the Norfolk DA’s office and federal authorities released last month, Norfolk DA Michael Morrissey asked for the federal investigation to be moved out of Massachusetts.

In a massive 301-page Feb.15 filing, prosecutors said they soon expected to receive documents from federal authorities.

Prosecutors said that on Jan.16, an Assistant U.S. Attorney contacted prosecutors and Read’s defense team to “discuss the possibility of disclosing information in the possession of the Department of Justice pursuant to federal regulations.”

The filing also says that in a later Feb. 9 call, the U.S. Attorney’s office “indicated it may release information to counsel for both parties subject to a stringent protective order but offered no definitive answers or clear guidance on what materials exist nor what will be produced pursuant to federal regulations.”

A source says that the Norfolk District Attorney’s office and Read’s attorneys now know what the feds have – but they are prohibited from sharing those documents with the public.

The Feb. 15 filing calls Read’s claims of a cover-up “misleading and disingenuous” and prosecutors say they have found no evidence of such a conspiracy.

Prosecutors said they question the basis of any probe into the investigation of O’Keefe’s death.

“It appears the defendant is the sole source of information for the federal investigation surrounding this case as the US Attorney’s Office never requested a police report, photograph, sworn grand jury testimony, witness list, third-party record, or piece of evidence from the Norfolk District Attorney’s Office or investigators from the Massachusetts State Police,” reads the filing.

The filing talks about a private investigator named Stephen Scanlon.

The defense says he was the first to come forward with allegations John O’Keefe was beaten to death and not struck by read’s SUV.

But according to the prosecution’s filing and state police, Scanlon had no insider information

Scanlon said he only shared a theory “based on his opinion and the media reports.”

And he said he had “no personal knowledge” of what happened.

The DA’s office also says they’ve “definitively” confirmed through two experts that a witness’ “hos [sic] long to die in cold” Google search occurred “following the discovery” of O’Keefe’s body – and not hours earlier like the defense claims.

And the DA’s office accuses Read and her attorneys of conspiring with the blogger known as Turtleboy to make “personal attacks on witnesses and their family members”.

The defense team has alleged that after Read dropped O’Keefe off at a party at a Canton home – O’Keefe was left for dead outside after party guests beat him inside, and a dog bit him.

Prosecutors say O’Keefe never entered the home, and that medical examiners have found lacerations found on his arms are not animal bites.

Prosecutors in the Feb. 15 filing also said there was no canine DNA found in swabs taken from O’Keefe’s clothing.

The filing cites: “... evidence to a veterinary forensic laboratory that concluded there was no canine DNA associated with the swabs taken from the victim’s clothing in the areas of the victim’s injuries…”

Read is scheduled to be back in court Monday – as both sides look to delay her March trial date.

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