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Ruling expected Oct. 2 on DNA evidence in 1987 rape case

Convicted rapist Newnon Flax did not get the DNA testing of evidence that was secured during his trial and conviction in 1988 because the evidence cannot be found.

However, while searching for it, prosecutors found evidence slides taken from the victim and were able to have those analyzed.

Flax has been jailed since 1987 on rape and burglary charges.

In May 2014, the state Court of Appeals granted Flax’s request for DNA testing of a semen stain found in a jumpsuit the victim was wearing during the June 1987 attack on the East Side of Buffalo. The jumpsuit is missing but the fluid sample slides were available.

The results were presented in State Supreme Court on Friday. An expert witness who did DNA analysis of the slides testified that, while some of the DNA has deteriorated in the 28 years since the samples were gathered, the remaining DNA that could be tested was a match for Flax.

Justice Penny M. Wolfgang said she will make a ruling on the evidence Oct. 2.

Flax, 52, was convicted in 1988 of aggravated rape for grabbing a woman as she was walking home from a store late at night, putting a knife to her neck and raping her. While he was free pending trial, he attacked another woman and burglarized her home. He was found guilty in both cases and was sentenced to up to 25 years in prison on the rape charge and up to 15 years on the burglary, with the sentences running consecutively. He remains in custody.