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Prosecution says suspected human blood found in multiple areas in living room of Mark Redwine's home

Samples were collected from a coffee table, love seat, couch and the floor of the room, according to court testimony Thursday.

LA PLATA COUNTY, Colo. — A now-retired Colorado of Bureau of Investigation (CBI) agent testified Thursday about several areas in the living room of Mark Redwine's home that had a positive reaction to the chemical luminol, which is used to indicate the presence of blood when it can't be seen by the naked eye.

Samples were collected from the home on Nov. 29, 2012, when a search warrant was executed at the home more than 10 days after 13-year-old Dylan Redwine was last seen on Nov. 18 of that year. He disappeared during a court-ordered visit with his father and his remains were found on Middle Mountain over a period of days in June 2013, according to the former agent.

Mark Redwine was indicted in 2017 and charged with second-degree murder and child abuse resulting in death.

In total there were six samples collected at Mark Redwine's home that had positive reactions with luminol and a second chemical, phenolphthalein, which indicates the substance is blood.

That reaction does not confirm that the substance is human blood, however, and the results of further testing to determine if the samples were human blood were not revealed in court Thursday.

Credit: La Plata County DA
Suspected blood on a love seat cushion at Mark Redwine's home.

Five of the six samples were from the living room of Mark Redwine's home and the other was from another room that was not identified during testimony. At least two of the samples were concerning to Joe Clayton, who worked for CBI from 1994 until his retirement in 2015.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- The layout of Mark Redwine's Vallecito home was shown on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

"First and foremost was the blood under the carpet. If blood had been deposited on the carpet and soaked through, the carpet should have given me a positive reaction, but it didn't," he said. "The blood on the couch and love seat, of course, they were dark brown leather to begin with, very difficult to see, not a lot of blood there, but it looked like it had been cleaned up, something had to happen there to make it that dilute."

Credit: La Plata County DA
Suspected blood on the floor of Mark Redwine's home.

The suspected human blood was found in the following places in the living room:

  • Living room couch cushion
  • Love seat cushion
  • Floor underneath rug
  • Rug in front of the love seat
  • Coffee table

"It was not just centralized in one place," said Clayton. "If I had found stains in one area I would think you had a localized bloodletting event, but this indicates movement, you have it on various pieces of furniture and under a rug."

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- Joe Clayton, who was with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, testifies on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

Clayton said he could not tell how blood could have ended up in those places. He said during an initial walkthrough he didn't immediately find any signs of a crime and the house appeared tidy overall with the exception of some food items out in the kitchen area, where they would be expected.

Earlier in the day, testimony focused on compromising photos of Mark Redwine, with one witness testifying that a reference to them sent him into a rage that "scared the [expletive] out of her."

Cory Redwine was up first Thursday morning to continue his testimony. He said that he still loves his father as he detailed his often tense relationship with him. 

"I wish I didn't have to be here," he said through tears.

He also described how he first learned that his little brother was missing.

"My mother called me while I was at work and said, 'Dylan is missing we can’t find him,'" he said. "At first, I didn’t really believe her, it had to sink in, but then she seemed pretty adamant about it. Once she kind of showed her worry I became concerned as well." 

RELATED: Friends recount final conversations with Dylan Redwine before his disappearance

He said he packed a quick overnight bag and left for the Durango area with his mom and stepdad. He testified that his last electronic communication with Dylan was a happy birthday message from him on Nov. 14, 2012, which was his 21st birthday. Cory Redwine said he called and texted Dylan numerous times during their hours-long drive to the Durango area, but got no responses.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- Cory Redwine, son of Mark Redwine, testifies on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

"It was not a good feeling," he said. "I had no clue and all you wanted to do was just find him. We stayed strong as a family." 

He said he quickly became "frustrated" by his father Mark's lack of involvement and said there was no communication from him when they arrived in the area.

"When the lack of his efforts were being clearly demonstrated, it really angered me," he testified. "I was just trying to find my brother."

He said he only saw his dad at one search and had sent him messages inviting him to other searches. He also said that in June 2013, when searches of Middle Mountain were planned, his dad was not involved, even though he lived just a few miles away. He said he and his mother had traveled hours to be there.

"I just offered any assistance I could to the search efforts," he said, while noting that he quit his job so that he could travel to the Durango area.

Dylan's remains were found during that June search of Middle Mountain and Cory Redwine testified about the numerous items that belonged to Dylan that were found and that he had to identify them to police.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-21-21-Durango- Evidence is presented during opening remarks in the Mark Redwine trial on Monday, June 21, 2021, in Durango Colo., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

They included a shoe, a sock, parts of a black White Sox T-shirt, the waistband from a pair of underwear and headphones.

He testified that Dylan's backpack, cellphone and ball cap have never been found.

RELATED: 'I figured he was safe because he was with his dad': Dylan Redwine's mom details his 2012 disappearance

On cross examination, the defense asked Cory Redwine about his brother's relationship with his father. He said the two were very close when Dylan was younger and that at one point Mark Redwine was a stay-at-home dad, which helped them develop a special bond.

The defense then homed in on the troubled relationship between Cory and his father Mark, and it was noted that the two had not spoken for most of 2012 following an argument in May of that year over messy conditions at Mark's home where Cory and his girlfriend had been staying.

Cory also met with Mark Redwine at a casino in December 2012 for a conversation to which Cory brought a recording device, the defense said. During that conversation, Cory said he told his father that he considered him a suspect in Dylan's disappearance, according to testimony.

Cory was also asked about an appearance on the Dr. Phil show that aired while Dylan was still missing. While on the show, Cory said he "hated" his father. When asked why he said that, he explained it was because of what he believed happened to Dylan and his prior personal feelings about his dad.

The defense then detailed a text exchange between Cory and his father in August 2012 that took place while Dylan and his dad were on a trip together to Boston.

Cory sent his dad the "compromising photos" that the brothers had found on a laptop earlier. During testimony on Wednesday, Cory said he used his phone to take pictures of the photos that were found on the laptop. He described the photos as showing Mark Redwine wearing women's clothing and a diaper.

Along with the photos, Cory Redwine, texted his dad messages calling his dad "nasty" and saying the photos were the "nastiest thing he had ever seen."

According to court testimony, Mark Redwine responded by asking Cory Redwine not to hurt Dylan and said "Dylan doesn't deserve to be hurt anymore" and "if you care about Dylan, why do you want to see him hurt?"

The photos were brought up again by Kathi Barry, who took the stand late Thursday morning. She testified that she did not know the Redwine family, but became involved in search efforts after seeing a Facebook post about the missing boy.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- Kathi Barry testifies on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

She remained involved in those efforts from November 2012 to June 2013, when Dylan's remains were found. She testified that around the time the remains were found she and a woman, Denise Hess, went to the home of Mark Redwine to confront him about a text message he had sent to Dylan's mother.

"He hoped that her colon cancer-riddled BFF died and that she did too. That's what he said," Barry said, referring to a text message she said was sent from Mark Redwine to Dylan's mom.

She said it was sent on the day the remains found on Middle Mountain were positively identified as Dylan's.

Hess, who was also heavily involved in the searches, according to court testimony, has since passed away.

After learning about the text message, Barry testified that Hess was extremely angry and wanted to confront Mark Redwine. 

"I mean, she knew Mark, and she was upset about the text," Barry said.

She said she drove Hess to his home and that when they pulled up he was outside the home, wearing only underwear, however, during the cross examination, the defense noted that according to a transcript from an earlier interview with a detective, she never made any mention of him only being in undergarments.

Barry described a very heated exchange between Hess and Mark Redwine which included lots of cursing and name calling.

"Because he said something to her about cancer, and the last breath, and he was laughing, she said, 'Well, it will be my last breath and I will make you pay for what you did to Dylan,'" she testified.

Barry said she then recalled Mark Redwine saying that he would dance when she was dead, referring to Hess. She said that comment made her "lose her mind" and she called him names and made comments that referenced the "compromising photos."

Barry testified that the mention of the photos caused Mark Redwine's demeanor to change.

"All of the sudden, he picked up this log, off like, a stove or an oven or something," she said. "He picked up that log and he went 'aggh!' and all I remember was, I don't know if you've seen the cartoons where the eyes bulge out and all you can see is the whites of the eyes, but that's all I saw. It scared the [expletive] out of me." 

Credit: La Plata County DA's Office
A photo of Mark Redwine's home.

During cross examination, the defense painted Barry and Hess as the aggressors and argued that Mark Redwine only picked up the log in an effort to get them to leave, which ultimately worked.

Amber Harrison, who represented Dylan's mom in divorce proceedings, also testified Thursday. She fought back tears as she recalled telling her that she needed to send Dylan to visit his father in November 2012.

“I told her, that she had to put Dylan on the plane or she would be charged with contempt of court," she said while wiping away tears.

Harrison also brought up the "compromising photos" testifying that Dylan said around September 2012 that they made him feel uncomfortable around his father.

"He disclosed to me that he had seen the photos and they creeped him out and they made him feel very uncomfortable," she said. "He told me he was creeped out by it and didn't want to visit his father."

She testified that she has personally never seen the photos, but had heard of them and is aware of what they showed.

Thursday afternoon, Tom Cowing, a lieutenant with the La Plata County Sheriff's Office testified about the living room of Mark Redwine's home.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- The layout of Mark Redwine's Vallecito home was shown on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

He said he took measurements and produced a model of the living room. That model is in a courtroom across the hall, and the jury was taken there to see it. Cowing also testified that a couch, small coffee table and rug were taken from Mark Redwine's home as part of evidence collection.

Credit: Jerry McBride
Jerry McBride/Durango Herald 06-24-21-Durango- The living room of Mark Redwine's Vallecito home was reconstructed in another courtroom for the jury to view on Thursday, June 24, 2021, during the Mark Redwine trial in Durango Co., at the La Plata County Courthouse. Redwine is on trial for second degree murder and child abuse resulting in death of his son Dylan Redwine.

Cowing, who was in Redwine's home in the immediate day after Dylan disappeared only testified about the model, but is expected to return to the stand later in the trial. He also helped execute a search warrant at the home on Nov. 29, 2012.

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