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Release Of Forensic Dna Results For Sierra Kills Sample


Guest Tyler H
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Guest Tyler H

"... the validity of Justin's claims"

Justin believed, hoped, and had confidence that these samples were from what he shot. But he never ASSERTED that he KNEW they were from what he shot. I get that the public thinks that this amounts to false claims. I don't agree with that, and have delineated the reasons for that several times.

By way of brief recap:

Bart has already covered this, and OntarioSquatch touched on it in an unrelated way - but it is important to note that Justin mentioned a "false confidence" that he had (and subsequently relayed to the public), due to the fact that Melba stated unequivocally that his sample was Sasquatch tissue. Later, Melba said things that cast doubt on the degree to which she believed that. (That will be the subject of Justin's next statement.) Then, the results from my lab and Bart's lab caused him to question it even further. Justin is as confused as anyone about the divergent, contradictory results from multiple sources. I think it's fair to say he doesn't know who to believe and still has a 'gut-feeling' that his tissue samples came from the biped that he shot. Justin can contribute yet more anectdotes (this time they will relate to his interactions with Melba) but he never asserted it was Squatch tissue, and he certainly does not have the ability to parse Melba's data (nor do I, nor does Bart, nor does Derek, and nor do many PhD biologists). At this point, in my view, it is now about the science - Justin won't be laying a major role in that. He CAN however contribute info that can allow people to see why Bart and I took the actions that we took.

Only once a team of bioinformaticists has had (what will unfortunately likely be) a very long time to process this data, will we finally have consensus on what the tissue is or is not. The sad reality is folks, that even once Melba releases her data, I think we are still in for a long ride. Had I realized at the outset that our lab results would not stand on their own, I'm not sure if I would have bothered the time and effort this has all taken. Maybe I still would have done it all... but if it still comes down to waiting on Melba, we aren't that much further ahead.

I have confidence in our lab results, and I have had several Phd's go through them. NONE have expressed any doubt in them - even the ones that are convinced of Squatch's existence. But some people are never going to accept them until Melba's data is thoroughly processed.

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Tyler, I'd like to ask a question of you.

I accept you are sincere and believe Justin to be likewise. Putting aside everything you've learned in the intervening time between the Sierra shootings and now, place yourself back in time to when you first heard the report. Had Justin, immediately upon meeting him, said he had flesh from what he believed to be his kill and then produced a paper from U of Trent saying it was a black bear plus DNA from the handler himself (Justin), what would your reaction have been at that time?

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Guest Tyler H

Tyler, I'd like to ask a question of you.

I accept you are sincere and believe Justin to be likewise. Putting aside everything you've learned in the intervening time between the Sierra shootings and now, place yourself back in time to when you first heard the report. Had Justin, immediately upon meeting him, said he had flesh from what he believed to be his kill and then produced a paper from U of Trent saying it was a black bear plus DNA from the handler himself (Justin), what would your reaction have been at that time?

I think this differs very little from the current situaion... My thoughts would have been similar to what they are now - my input would have been "I believe you... but this is looking like it may end up being just another anecdotal encounter story. Let's get you a plygraph, and get those boots tested"

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Can I ask someone to point me to interviews Justin has conducted *after* the release of the Trent DNA analysis? A link would be great. I understand he participated in another forum and conducted a radio interview? Please correct me if I'm wrong.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Tyler H

In light of developments over the last few days, I would like to remind everyone that Bart got his lab report over a week ago, and has been trying to put together a statement ever since.

I have a feeling that some who earlier faulted us for releasing our results PRIOR to Melba's report will now fault us for 'waiting for her report to come out, and then trying to sabotage it and steal her thunder'

Our efforts have been independent of any timing/scheduling by Melba.

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And this gives me the total lowdown. My God it's like I'm actually looking at a sasquatch now.

If this is proof? I'll take uncertainty. That's much more certain, to me, than this proof.

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Guest Tyler H

Articles like this: http://arstechnica.com/science/2013/02/bigfoot-genome-paper-conclusively-proves-that-sasquatch-is-real/

Remind me that we need better handling protocols when people DO have physical evidence that they want to get tested.

I started on some suggestions along these lines some time agao.

As soon as I can get some time, I think I'll start a new thread with those suggestions, and allow some of the very bright and experienced people on this board to make additional suggestions. Hopefully some people that do such work can add to it. They are not sceintific protocols but rather, the sort of things us amateur researchers would want to think about.

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Should get law enforcement officials to post about proper collection of evidence protocol. Use paper not plastic, etc.. If we get better sample collection, we could get better results.

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We've been through all that many times. Paper not plastic, double bag, let things dry, on and on. The salient issue is going to be proper vetting of samples. What I am getting from this entire episode with the study is my suspicion that the samples were not properly vetted. The few vetting documents I have seen indicate no reason to believe the samples will likely yield sasquatch DNA.

Ketchum was told the samples came from a sasquatch. She believed what she was told and steered her research to that end. If things tested as other than sasquatch, the testing methods were wrong and allowances had to be made. Now she has one hell of a lot of data and people seem to be having a hard time interpreting it.

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Guest Tyler H

We've been through all that many times. Paper not plastic, double bag, let things dry, on and on. The salient issue is going to be proper vetting of samples. What I am getting from this entire episode with the study is my suspicion that the samples were not properly vetted. The few vetting documents I have seen indicate no reason to believe the samples will likely yield sasquatch DNA.

Ketchum was told the samples came from a sasquatch. She believed what she was told and steered her research to that end. If things tested as other than sasquatch, the testing methods were wrong and allowances had to be made. Now she has one hell of a lot of data and people seem to be having a hard time interpreting it.

My protocols have less to do with the actual physical handling of the evidence, and more to do with considerations about how to get it properly investigated. I think we learened a lot in the past 2 years about things to be wary of, and things to consider.

I don't think it is accurate to say that Melba was told the samples were from a Sasquatch. And when Justin's statement comes out shortly, you may feel the same. he found tissue that looked similar, Melba conclusively told him that it was Sasquatch, and thus he became convinced.

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BFF Patron

There is a difference between telling somebody you shot a sasquatch and captured a suspected sample and having somebody tell you your sample is a Sasquatch so.... you shot a sasquatch or a Sasquatch was shedding chunks.

That part makes little sense. But if he was told he had the goods then maybe he became emboldened a tad more about the course of events that he recalled leading to the shooting and the samples.

Where is Mounty when we need a chronology of this whole story?

Edited to add it sounds like Justin's version will be along shortly so I will wait for the release.

Edited by bipedalist
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At this point, the only question I have is was there ever a steak retrieved from the shooting site in the 1st place? Because if Justin actually found the sample as a torn chunk of fur & flesh, even if it was from a bear carcass, it had to have been created by a 3rd scavenger animal. In which case where is the DNA from that scavenger? Was it a bear scavenging another bear? Is it possible for a scavenger not to leave its DNA on a piece of flesh that it tears off with its teeth? Yet all Justin had to do is handle it to leave his DNA on it. Where is evidence of the 3rd animal here?

Edited by Gigantofootecus
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Considering the title of this thread speaks of the Sierra Kills I can understand thinking my post was reflecting on Justin's samples. I was not being clear. (Actually I forgot what thread I was reading). I was referring generally to all 109 samples in the Ketchum study. I have not seen any vetting paperwork concerning Justin's sample.

My bad.

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Guest BartloJays

At this point, the only question I have is was there ever a steak retrieved from the shooting site in the 1st place? Because if Justin actually found the sample as a torn chunk of fur & flesh, even if it was from a bear carcass, it had to have been created by a 3rd scavenger animal. In which case where is the DNA from that scavenger? Was it a bear scavenging another bear? Is it possible for a scavenger not to leave its DNA on a piece of flesh that it tears off with its teeth? Yet all Justin had to do is handle it to leave his DNA on it. Where is evidence of the 3rd animal here?

Although I've addressed it multiple times, this is a good question. What I've been able to get with digging, is a pic with date stamp (requested by Derek day of retrieval) Justin has of site coordinates on his GPS (2 1/2 drive from home) on the day of question 11/12/10. There's subsequent pics of defrosted tissue in Justin's hand on same day. That in and of itself, does not prove that they went back "together" and retrieved flesh where and how they said they did. However, it's intriguing in that they did talk to Derek that day of retrieval so they were together, both wives confirmed this with me a while back in addition to their confidence of believing they would get the juvey's skeletal remains before departing. In addition, this wasn't a prepared bogey in case somebody asked, I had to dig and we pieced this together.

In essence, to not have retrieved the tissue that day they would've had to possess and defrost tissue (our labs say bear) prior to departing, go to site and take picture knowing they aren't going to retrieve anything (5 hrs of driving + 5 hrs or so of digging in snow or doing something else) then have presence of mind to make sure the photos were taken back at home with defrosted tissue.

Impossible? Absolutely not. I would argue highly unlikely however.

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