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Alaska judge allows evidence on alternative suspects in Maine man's murder trial

Steven Downs was charged with sexual assault and murder and extradited to Alaska.

ALASKA, USA — Editor's note: This video originally aired March 13.

A Maine man charged in a young woman’s killing 28 years ago at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks will be allowed to present evidence about alternative suspects at his trial. 

Steven Downs was charged with sexual assault and murder, and extradited to Alaska, after DNA his aunt submitted to a genealogy website matched DNA from the crime scene. 

The victim was shot in the head, choked with a ligature, stabbed, and shocked with a stun gun. 

The judge ruled that the defense can present evidence about three alternative suspects at the trial, due to begin on Jan. 3.

More NEWS CENTER Maine stories.