Police: DNA exhumed from former priest does not match DNA from Sister Cesnik

Posted at 4:39 PM, May 17, 2017
and last updated 2019-03-17 19:37:17-04

A DNA sample exhumed from the remains of former priest A. Joseph Maskell does not match DNA from the murder scene of Sister Catherine Anne Cesnick.

The Baltimore County Police Department received the results Wednesday. The laboratory results exclude Maskell as a contributor to DNA preserved from the crime scene. 

Police have been trying to solve the nun's murder for nearly 50 years. Maskell's body was exhumed on February 28, 2017 to compare his DNA to evidence from the crime scene. 

RELATED: Neflix series on murder of Baltimore nun comes out Friday

Detectives say the negative results from the Maskell DNA profile comparison means that the best hope for solving the case no lies with potential witnesses. Detectives are hoping that someone will come forward with conclusive information about the murder. 

Sister Cesnik's body was found in a Lansdowne dumping area in January 1970. She was last seen in her Baltimore City apartment just before running errands in the Edmondson Village. 

Maskell is not the first suspect whose DNA has been compared to the crime scene sample. Detectives have developed DNA profiles of about half a dozen suspects. None of the suspect profiles have matched. 

The DNA profile from the crime scene was also placed into the FBI's Combined DNA Index System. There have been no matches fromthe scene with any DNA profile in the national database. 

The murder of Sister Cesnik is the subject of Netflix's newest series, The Keepers. The series debuts Friday May 19.