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Suspect's remains exhumed in Boston Strangler case

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 12, 2013 at 7:25 pm •  Published: July 12, 2013

On Friday, retired state trooper David Raymond and his friend Andy Brancato, whose late father knew DeSalvo and is buried in a nearby plot, watched the digging operation for about 15 minutes before authorities shooed them away.

"My father went to school with him," Brancato said of DeSalvo. "He always said he was a little crazy but innocent."

Raymond said seeing the digging brought him back to what he'd witnessed as a child, when he saw a crowd swarming in his neighborhood as police arrested DeSalvo.

"Coming from a police background, maybe we'll have a case solved," Raymond said.

DeSalvo, a blue-collar worker and Army veteran who was married with children, was never convicted of the Strangler slayings.

His relatives were "very emotionally distressed" by Friday's exhumation, family attorney Elaine Sharp said.

"They didn't even tell us when they were going to do it," the attorney said. "They didn't even extend us the courtesy of an invitation."

Sharp has said that the family believes there still will be reasonable doubt that DeSalvo killed Sullivan, even if additional DNA tests show a 100 percent match. She has said private testing of Sullivan's remains showed other male DNA was present.

The attorney said Friday that DeSalvo's family also has doubts about how police handled the evidence they're relying on now. Police have called the evidence the family used in private testing "very questionable."