Murder Suspect Fights DNA Evidence

Josie Klakström

A private lab was able to give police his name by using technological advances.
Michael Carbo is suspected in the assault and murder of Nancy DaughertyDuluth News Tribune

Nancy Daughtery was last been seen alive with her friend on the 16th of July 1986. She was supposed to be moving to the Twin Cities the next day to start paramedic school, but instead, Chisholm police were called to do a welfare check after her neighbors heard screams for help coming from her home. The 38-year-old had been sexually assaulted, beaten and strangled.
Nancy left behind two daughtersKare 11

Nancy’s husband was stationed with the Air National Guard in Germany at the time and was promptly ruled out as a suspect in her death. Evidence had been left at the crime scene, and it was collected in the hope that it would match someone on the DNA database at the time. However, no match was found.

Over time, more than 100 people were questioned about the mother of two’s murder and their DNA was collected to test against the sample, but again, none matched.

Last year, the Chisholm Police Department met with Parabon NanoLabs, whose work had helped find the Golden State Killer in 2018. For just $7,000, the private company could conduct genetic phenotyping, where conceivable characteristics are identified from genealogy and cultural surroundings and find a potential lead.

Parabon identified one man as a probable suspect, and after attaining DNA from him, police were able to place Michael Allan Carbo Jr. at the murder scene.

The 53-year-old from Chisholm was arrested in his home and taken to St Louis County Jail, where he was charged with second-degree murder. At the time, Chisholm Police Chief Vern Manner released a statement to the press.

“We are gratified to be able to provide some answers to this family and this community after all of these years. We are grateful as well to the BCA and so many assisting law enforcement agencies that continued to work this case over more than three decades.”

At the time, Carbo didn’t have a criminal record; therefore, his DNA wasn’t on any databases. Now, Carbo is fighting the use of DNA in his trial because of new technological best practices.

Carbo and his defence team believe that the method in which the Virginia-based private lab concluded that Carbo was the suspect infringes on his rights, and the defendant should be given the details of the report. However, the judge in the case disagreed, and this is what will be fought in court during the coming months.

While we wait to see if Michael Carbo will pay for the crimes he’s suspected of, Nancy’s daughter Gina gave a statement recently.

“There are no words the describe the terrible holes that were left in so many lives, including my own. So many tears and struggles. She has missed so much and I miss her love and guidance.”

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Josie Klakström is a true crime writer. Follow her at


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