Back to Trials

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v Derrick Gallaway

TrueAllele connects cash tray blood stain to California killer of motel owner

Crime In May 2016, 78-year-old Dehnad Taiedi was shot in the head at his Jefferson Hills Motel. His office was ransacked, and cash was stolen. Drops of blood led out of the office.
Evidence A blood stain from inside the cash tray was swabbed as evidence.
DNA The Allegheny County Office Medical Examiner’s Office developed DNA data from the blood stain.
Match The data was too complex for the crime lab’s limited methods. They reported that "no comparison can be made to the reference sample of Derrick Gallaway." Chief Trial Deputy Daniel Fitzsimmons contacted Cybergenetics for a TrueAllele analysis of the lab’s DNA data.
TrueAllele On the same DNA lab data, the computer connected the cash tray blood stain to Derrick Gallaway, 63, of Sacramento, California. TrueAllele’s match statistic was 24.6 quadrillion.
Cybergenetics    On August 30, 2019, TrueAllele analyst Beatriz Pujols testified at the Pittsburgh trial about the computer’s DNA match statistic.
Outcome On September 3, the jury found Derrick Gallaway guilty of first-degree murder, robbery, and tampering with evidence. On November 25, Judge Mark Tranquilli sentenced to mandatory life in prison without parole.
Media

  • Family seeks answers after motel owner found shot to death in Jefferson Hills WPXI
  • Man Arrested In 2016 Jefferson Hills Motel Owner’s Murder CBS Pittsburgh
  • Trial Underway For Man Charged With Shooting Death Of 78-Year-Old Jefferson Hills Motel Owner CBS Pittsburgh
  • Testimony ends in case of motel owner's slaying Post-Gazette
  • Man Convicted In Shooting Death Of 78-Year-Old Jefferson Hills Motel Owner CBS Pittsburgh
  • Jury convicts California man in slaying of Jefferson Hills Motel owner Post-Gazette
  • Life sentence in killing of Jefferson Hills Motel owner; victim's friends and family speak in court WTAE