CRIPPLE CREEK, Colo. (KDVR) -- Prosecutors will be permitted to conduct DNA testing on a tooth fragment found on the ranch of a Colorado man suspected of killing the mother of his child and burning her body, a judge ruled Friday.
The Gazette reports that investigators discovered the fragment while searching a ranch owned by Patrick Frazee, who has pleaded not guilty to killing Kelsey Berreth.
District Judge Scott Sells ruled that the Colorado Bureau of Investigation may proceed with the testing in the presence of attorneys for Frazee.
Berreth, a 29-year-old flight instructor, was last seen on Nov. 22, 2018, at a supermarket near her home in the mountain community of Woodland Park. The search for her started on Dec. 2, when her mother reported her missing. Her body has not been found.
Berreth and Frazee were engaged, but lived in separate homes.
Krystal Jean Lee Kenney, a former Idaho nurse, told authorities that she and Frazee had been dating and that he had accused Berreth of abusing their daughter — an allegation authorities have said is not backed up by evidence.
Investigators have testified that Kenney told police Frazee repeatedly asked her to kill Berreth but that he later admitted to beating Berreth to death with a baseball bat. She said Frazee demanded she clean up blood at Berreth's home and watched as Frazee burned Berreth's body, according to investigators.
Kenney told police that Frazee planned to dispose of Berreth's remains in a dump or a river, investigators have said.