Michaela C. Briede death: Boyfriend gives DNA sample under warrant

FORT MITCHELL, Ky. - Michaela Briede's boyfriend gave a DNA sample in response to a warrant on Friday, but otherwise he has refused to cooperate in the investigation of her fatal shooting in their Fort Mitchell apartment last month, police said.

Kenton County Commonwealth's Attorney Rob Sanders said that Joshua Darlington is not a suspect in the killing of the 18-year-old Thomas More College student.

"Normally DNA like that is collected voluntarily,  but in this case we had to obtain a search warrant because there was no sample voluntarily submitted," Sanders said.

Police also served a search warrant in order to go through cell phones found at the scene, 9 On Your Side's Bryce Anslinger reported.

"Nobody has been named a suspect at this point," Sanders said. "We don't have enough evidence that we feel comfortable to name any specific person a suspect. However, none has been ruled out as a suspect at this point."

Investigators believe Briede was killed during a robbery connected to drug trafficking. The shooting took place about 11:45 p.m. May 28 at The Vinings of Fort Mitchell, in the 500 block of West Chelsea Circle.

Fort Mitchell Detective Ron Wietholter said Darlington submitted to a DNA test at noon. Darlington was accompanied by his attorney and would not speak to investigators, Wietholter said.

In his affidavit for the warrant, Wietholter said Darlington was not consistent in his accounts of the shooting to police and others. Wietholter said police want to compare Darlington's DNA with any DNA found on shell casings or other evidence from the scene.

Darlington has refused a lie-detector test and several requests by police and Sanders for interviews, Wietholter said.

"We asked him to come in to look at photos of possible suspects. We asked him for interviews. He has refused since he obtained an attorney on his second interview," Wietholter said.

Wietholter said he "wouldn't even guess" when DNA results would be available. "That depends on the state lab where we send it and how high on the priority list they put us," he said.

According to Wietholter's affidavit, Darlington told him after the shooting that Darlington and Briede were asleep in bed when Darlington awoke to a loud bang and saw two unknown black men in the bedroom. Darlington said they demanded drugs and money.  Darlington said he complied and they fled.

Darlington said he didn't see Briede get shot, even though she was next to him in bed and she was shot multiple times, according to the affidavit. Although the couple's dog was also shot, Darlington couldn't say who shot it or when.

Wietholter's affidavit said he spoke to others who talked to Darlington about the incident and "Darlington's version of the facts differ from one witness to another and are noticeably different from the version told to (Wietholter)."

Fort Mitchell police recently said they looking for more than one suspect in Briede's death and that she was targeted.

Briede was a 2012 graduate of Grant County High School.
 

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