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Chicago Blackhawks: Kane DNA Results Explored

By Colin Likas
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It’s the one thing the Chicago Blackhawks and their fans won’t entirely be able to get away from this season, that being the Patrick Kane rape investigation. It took another turn late Saturday with a new report by The Buffalo News. (Fair warning, not everything in this post is “Rated G,” per say; although I don’t think you’d expect that in a post about a rape investigation, some talking points may make readers uncomfortable.)

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According to multiple law enforcement and other sources, no sign of Kane’s DNA was found on the female accuser’s genital area or undergarments following the application of a rape kit last month. His DNA was found underneath some of her fingernails and on her shoulders, however.

Two individuals interviewed by The Buffalo News disagreed to an extent on what the lack of Kane’s DNA on the accuser’s genital area and undergarments meant for him moving forward.

Florina Altshiler, a Buffalo attorney and former sex crimes prosecutor, told the media outlet that the lack of Kane’s DNA in those two areas could indicate a lack of ejaculation or that he used a condom, something she says she is aware of in some rape cases.

On the other end of the spectrum, former Erie County District Attorney Frank Clark, who has been talked to by The Buffalo News multiple times during this saga, feels the lack of Kane’s DNA on the rape kit’s vaginal swabs could “exonerate him of rape.” Neither Clark nor Altshiler has direct knowledge of the rape kit results.

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Clark had more to say regarding the Kane DNA found on different areas of the accuser’s body — under her fingernails and on her shoulders. While some unnamed sources told The Buffalo News that could have come from casual contact, Clark said those findings could mean there was “some sort of assault or sexual misconduct, but that would probably be much less serious than a rape.”

The DNA findings lend some background to the idea that both parties in this investigation — Kane and the accuser — feel they’re in the right. While the findings don’t appear to indicate a rape occurred (though it’s not 100 percent ruled out, either), they do seem to indicate some sort of physical contact between Kane and his accuser. This will obviously be given a deeper look as the investigation continues.

For now, this new report doesn’t change the situation involving Kane. He’ll go on preparing for the season while he and others await the resumption of a grand jury hearing to decide whether he should be charged with a crime. At the same time, according to reports, both sides in the investigation will continue to work on a settlement to avoid a future criminal trial.

It’s important to note this DNA evidence does not automatically clear up the situation. While it doesn’t directly indicate a rape occurred, it also doesn’t tell the entire story. Additionally, it doesn’t mean it is impossible for a rape to have occurred. This is simply the newest piece of information in an ongoing investigation and shouldn’t be treated as the end all be all to rape accusations against Kane.

What I’m saying is, try not to jump to assumptions, Blackhawks fans. If you’ve already drawn your own conclusions on this case, even before the latest DNA news, I certainly can’t stop you. But this investigation will take time to work itself out, and we won’t know the whole story for some time, if ever. We’ll continue to watch how it plays out while begging hockey to start as soon as possible.

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