Chapter 11: The Unknown Suspect
Sheriff Jones remained uncooperative with Henry Ralston, Detective Snyder, the Johnston’s, and their attorneys. Current and former deputies continued behind the scenes assistance.
Interviews with a wide spectrum of witnesses gradually created a force demanding the arrest and conviction of the major suspect – regardless of often conflicting views and lack of evidence.
The overall opinion of law enforcement was grim for the Johnston’s. Investigators believed with the trailer remodeled only in certain rooms, the paneling and carpeting was removed due to “blood splatter stains.”
Investigators claimed evidence found indicated the teenagers were killed in the living room and dismembered inside the bathtub. They were then transported from the trailer inside rolled carpet unnoticed.
“A barbaric accusation,” said the Johnston attorneys, but someone “held accountable” for the murders was also the general belief.
Dale insisted the carpet was twenty years old and “needed replacing,” He insisted he and Sarah killed no one.
Michelle told police she recalled “a rug and paneling being removed” to allow for a window to be put in, but never saw the window installed.
She claimed the process all occurred between the time Annette and Todd went missing and while she stayed with Christina Damon, which was before Annette and Todd were found.
Earl Sheets described Dale as a “skilled carpenter” with a “special touch” for wood working.