Fiancee Stands By Accused Yale Killer Ray Clark

Jennifer Hromadka gave DNA swabs to authorities investigating Annie Le's murder.

March 15, 2010 — -- The fiancee of accused Yale murderer Ray Clark is standing by her man, visiting him regularly in jail, even as she has become a subject of the homicide investigation.

A search warrant released today stated that detectives sought a DNA sample from Clark's fiancee Jennifer Hromadka because they had "probably cause" to believe her DNA would be found on bloody items stuffed in a wall along with the body of 24-year-old Yale researcher Annie Le.

The lawyer for Hromadka told that she is still supporting Clark and that the results from the DNA tests ordered by the state prosecutor's office in November have still not been released.

"As far as I know, they are still together," said criminal lawyer Robert Berke. "And we are waiting, just like every one else, for results [of the DNA test]."

Berke said that Hromadka has been visiting Clark in prison but is not sure how recently she has been to see him.

Asked whether his client is concerned about the results of the DNA test, Berke said, "She is not worried."

It is not unusual, said Berke, for results of DNA comparisons to take months due to a backlog at the state's forensic laboratory.

According to a search warrant released today, DNA found on a lanyard that attached to Hromadka's university key card was found on a pen and a bloody sock found in the wall where Le's body was stuffed.

The search warrant claimed that because of the apparent DNA matches between Hromadka's lanyard and on the bloody socks, there was "probably cause that evidence of the crime of murder... will be found within the ... swab taken from Jennifer Hromadka."

But the results of the DNA tests, which were taken more than three months ago in November, are not revealed in the search warrant, and Hromadka has never been accused or charged in connection to Le's murder.

Late last year, New Haven Police Chief James Lewis said that he did not expect to make any more arrests after taking Clark into custody. "We've made the only arrest we expect to make," Lewis said at the time.

Since her fiancee's arrest, Hromadka has reportedly been visiting Clark weekly at a maximum security prison, the MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution in Suffield, Conn., where he is being held on $3 million bail.

Messages left with the New Haven State Attorney's office and Hromadka's attorney, Robert Berke, were not immediately returned.

Berke told The Associated Press in December that he wasn't sure why his client's DNA was wanted and that he had been told that Hromadka was not a suspect.

Ray Clark's Fiancee Probed for DNA, Use of Key Card on Murder Date

Also in the warrant is an description of Hromadka's key card in the days leading up to and after Le's murder.

Hromadka worked at an Animal Technician alonside her boyfriend and was sometimes assigned to work in the lab where Le's body was found. Her key card permits her entry to that lab.

From Sept. 8 to Sept. 13 Hormadka's key card was not used to access the building and were instead only active in other buildings that were in her "normal course of business" at Yale, according to the documents.

Still investigators say in the warrant that it is not uncommon for employees at Yale to gain entry into a building by "following behind others accessing and using their respective electonric key-cards, suggesting that even if Hromadka didn't swipe her card, she could have been with someone who did.

Le was first reported missing on Sept. 8 when her roommate said she hadn't returned after class. After days of searching, investigators found her body on Sept. 13 - the day she was scheduled to get married - in the Ivy League lab where she worked.

Autopsy results show Le was strangled, and after physical evidence linked Clark to "key pieces of evidence" found with the graduate student's body, he was charged with felony murder.

Clark entered a not guilty plea on Jan. 26 to two charges of murder and felony murder. He is due in court again April 7.