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Document: Cadaver dog gets "positive hit" at missing baby Lisa Irwin's home

Lisa Irwin KCTV

Lisa Irwin
KCTV

Updated 9:43 PM EST

(AP/CBS) KANSAS CITY, Mo.  - An FBI cadaver dog reacted to the scent of a dead body inside the Kansas City home where a baby girl disappeared nearly three weeks ago, according to a police affidavit released Friday.

Pictures: Missing Kansas City infant

The affidavit was filed to support a search warrant request for the home of Deborah Bradley and Jeremy Irwin, who reported their 10-month-old daughter, Lisa Irwin, missing Oct. 4. They said someone must have crept into the home and taken the girl while the mother and two other boys slept.

According to the affidavit, the dog was taken into the house Monday,  where it indicated a "positive 'hit' for the scent of a deceased human in an area of the floor of Bradley's bedroom near the bed."  A judge approved the warrant Tuesday and police and the FBI conducted a daylong search Wednesday.

Court documents filed Friday said police took blankets, toys and clothing from the house, as well as rolls of tape and a tape dispenser.

Police declined to discuss what they found.

"We aren't able to talk about specifics of the case," said police spokeswoman Stacey Graves. "The documents that were made public will have to stand on their own."

The FBI dogs, which often are used at both disaster and crime scenes, are trained "specially to recognize the scent of decaying, decomposing human flesh," retired FBI special agent Jeff Lanza said Friday.

"That's what they hit on. What the dogs are saying is that they smell that scent," Lanza said. "That can be the scent of an actual body decomposing, or residual scents after the body is no longer there."

Wednesday's search was perhaps law enforcement's most aggressive yet at the parents' home, drawing officers armed with shovels, rakes and other tools who hauled off bags that appeared to be full of potential evidence.

Police also brought in a bomb and arson truck to assist the search, though spokesman Capt. Steve Young said there were no indications of explosives in the house. Some bomb detection devices use X-ray technology to scan solid objects to reveal items concealed within. An AP reporter saw investigators carrying at least a dozen thin, black rectangular sheets away from the home during the afternoon.

Attorney Joe Tacopina told The Associated Press late Friday he considers the report meaningless. Tacopina says cadaver dogs are trained to detect decomposing flesh. He adds that even if the baby had died, decomposition could not have happened so quickly.

Complete coverage of Lisa Irwin on Crimesider


  • Crimesider Staff

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