A Chelsea man accused of killing his girlfriend's baby says there is new evidence that proves his innocence.
For the past 19 months, 21 year-old Alexander Stolte has been behind bars. He is accused of beating his girlfriend's one year-old daughter to death while babysitting at his home in Chelsea. Police say he is the killer because he was the only person home with the baby the night she died. But from day one Stolte has maintained he didn't do it.
According to new court records, it turns out one year-old Kyleigh McDaniel was sexually assaulted before she was killed. Investigators collected a hair from the body. It was tested at the FBI lab and based on that testing, the hair does not belong to Stolte or anyone else who was living in the home. No other DNA evidence was found at the scene or on the clothing of the baby or Stolte.
"It is not a wholly circumstantial case. There is material evidence and that evidence is exculpatory," said Dan Snedon, Stolte's lawyer.
The night of the murder, Stolte reportedly told investigators the baby was sleeping in a crib in the basement of the home. He claimed he was drinking upstairs using the computer and the phone. Detectives admit they never did forensic testing in the area, or considered other theories or suspects.
"At this point the only piece of forensic evidence in this case, the only DNA, points to an individual who has not been identified," Snedon said.
The defense also points out that during five different interviews with investigators, police say Stolte's story never changed -- that he had no clue what happened to the baby girl. The defense also argues prosecutors have never established a motive or found the murder weapon that fractured the baby's skull.
Prosecutors declined comment for this story and directed Channel 3 court papers they filed that show Stolte admitted he was the only one home that night.
Those papers state: "Eyewitness testimony, autopsy findings and the defendant's admissions constitute substantial admissible evidence of the defendant's guilt."
Alexander Stolte's second-degree murder trial is scheduled to begin next summer.
The discussion of the new evidence came up Wednesday because Stolte was hoping it cast enough doubt on the state's case to convince the judge to let him out on bail until the trial, but the judge refused to rule on the motion, saying it was matter that needed to be appealed to the state Supreme Court.
Friday, April 18 2014 10:13 PM EDT2014-04-19 02:13:23 GMT
A mother and her five-old child were taken to Fletcher Allen Friday night after being hit by a car in Winooski. Police say the accident happened around 8-30 at the intersection of West Spring and NorthMore >>
A mother and her five-old child were taken to Fletcher Allen Friday night after being hit by a car in Winooski.More >>
Friday, April 18 2014 5:16 PM EDT2014-04-18 21:16:40 GMT
Vt. State Police say a small plane has crashed on Interstate 89 north in Highgate. A state airport official confirms that a single-engine aerobatic plane was in the vicinity of the Franklin County StateMore >>
The pilot of a small plane parachuted to safety before his aircraft crashed on Interstate 89 north in Highgate Friday. More >>