May 11, 2015

I am writing to ask all Alaskans to support the funding for the Alaska State Troopers Cold Case Unit.  Please, no one should get away with murder.  Spending $383,000  to ensure that detectives are current on the cold cases and will be able to act and react if tips come in is crucial to keeping killers and rapists off our streets.

It is extremely sad that so many families who are hoping to someday get answers, get justice, and see their day in court, will lose that opportunity.  It is very shortsighted not to realize that it is not just these families who would suffer a disservice, but the public at large. Protection of the public should be the priority of our government; public safety.  With people getting away with murder those killers will commit more crimes and there will be more victims.

Now that Alaska is collecting DNA on All Felony Arrests, many more crimes are being solved. Many old cases, dating back to 1978 have been solved across the nation because Cold Case Investigators submit decade old evidence to the crime labs and DNA is found.  Eventually, if not already, there will be a match with an arrestee or a convicted felon.

Cases with any DNA evidence have so much potential of being solved when Cold Case Investigators are working on and are familiar with the crime.  In my daughter’s murder case, Bonnie Craig, there was over 10,000 pages of investigation, over 105 DNA samples were taken to rule-out possible suspects, and there was 240+ audio taped interviews.  If no one was familiar with the case at the time the DNA match came in, I can assure you, law enforcement would have been scrambling and would have had to do a lot more catch up and the state would have ended up paying a lot of overtime trying to put the case together.  It probably will end up costing more than the $383,000 that the state will save by not funding a Cold Case Unit.

It is sad that we only fund our law enforcement enough to deal with the most horrific and recent crimes.  Regardless of when a murder happened it is considered an “open case.”  Should the Cold Case Unit be disbanned it seems only fair that the family of the victims be given all the information on the case so they can hire their own investigators or detectives.  Currently that is not an option for families and victims of cold cases.  Years ago I tried to hire retired state troopers and retired police detectives and I was told that murder cases are always considered “open” and therefore none of this information would be shared.  So if the state does not fund the Cold Case Unit they definitely should consider allowing families to hire their own investigators and share the information they have to date with those investigators.

My heart goes out to all those who are still waiting for answers.  It was such an incredible bittersweet triumph for me to hear the words, “Guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty” as Kenneth Dion was convicted of Bonnie’s murder almost 17 years after he had killed her.  The weight of the world was lifted off my shoulders, knowing that he could no longer harm another mother’s child and that he would spend the rest of his life in jail.  Justice prevailed!

I beg all lawmakers to consider continued support of and approving the funding of the $383,000 for the Cold Case Unit.  In Alaska a half mile of road, in some places, costs more than that!  Please help protect the public from killers and rapists.  

I urge all Alaskans to contact your lawmakers.  Ask them to stop re-victimizing the victims and not allow Alaska to become a safe haven for criminals.   Ask them to please fund the Cold Case Unit.

Karen Foster


Justice For Bonnie

June 9, 2014
Justice For Bonnie will hit the bookstore shelves September 2nd!  The book chronicles the 17 year saga of our fight to bring Bonnie's killer to justice.  The murder happened in Alaska; the killer, who was finally identified by DNA 12 years later, was in the New Hampshire prison system about to be released from serving time for armed robbery.

I was notified by Alaska State Troopers that Bonnie had died in a hiking accident September 28, 1994, while I was down in Florida on a sail boat.  Denial, and so many unanswered questions, I insisted it had to be murder.  The book, skillfully written by I.J, Schecter, who took all the years of information and my stories and put it all together.  I have to thank I.J. for all his patience and his diligence of seeing this project to completion.

Karen Foster


DNA Results in 90 Minutes

November 28, 2013
New technology now makes it possible for law enforcement to have results on DNA testing in 90 minutes! 

When I first heard about, and started pushing for DNA testing in 2007, it sometimes took over a year for law enforcement to get results due to backlogs and the whole testing process.  In the United Kingdom they would get results in 2 days.  I pushed for changes in Alaska's law to require the collection of DNA on all felony arrests and for those DNA profiles to be entered into CODIS, our national DNA Database, within 60 to 90 days!  Now, technology makes it possible to have results in 90 minutes. Currently, in Alaska, our crime lab has all DNA profiles input within 30 days.  This is much better than most of the other states.

A town in Pennsylvania  has just unveiled this new DNA testing program that is stopping criminals in their tracks.  Habitual criminals will be arrested and convicted so much quicker with this new program.  Career criminals will have their careers shortened significantly as law enforcement will now be able to identify them and link their crimes with this new testing procedure, BodeHITS.  This means so many crimes will be prevented and there will be fewer people falling victim to crimes.

While we can be thankful this DNA testing program is now available, we will have to push for our lawmakers and our law enforcement to ensure all states start using the best tools available to them.  We should no longer have to wait months and years for results. 

Call, write and talk with your lawmakers, requesting your town, county and state get on board with this new DNA testing program. Let them know what is available.   It won't take you much time at all and it could help prevent so much crime.

For more information on the program read this article on Bensalem's Police Department program 

This testing program, BodeHITS, when used for processing DNA evidence in property crime cases:*
  • DOUBLES the number of suspects identified
  • DOUBLES the arrest rate
  • DOUBLES the cases accepted for prosecution
  • IS cost-effective

BodeHITS uses DNA technology to generate more investigative leads to solve more crimes.

Go to the BodeTech website for more information.  Share this information with lawmakers and law enforcement.


Investigation Discovery Features Bonnie's Story

October 18, 2013
Deadline: Crime with Tamron Hall on ID TV, (Investigation Discovery Channel) featured a story on the Bonnie Craig murder and the pursuit for justice. 

The story titled, "A Mother's Mission" chronicles the tragic saga that our family went through after being notified of Bonnie's death; a death we refused to believe was a "hiking accident."  We knew it was murder.

The program aired on Wednesday, October 16th.  It will air again on Saturday, October 19th at 3:00 pm.  Check your local listings for times in your area. 

I was disappointed the show doesn't clearly explain how critical the collection of DNA on all felony arrests is to catching the criminals and solving crimes before more crimes are committed.  In Bonnie's case the killer was in jail two months before he killed her, out on parole when he killed her, and back in jail two months after killing her.  If DNA had been collected on arrest it would have been solved in weeks.  It took 12 years then almost another 5 years to convict him. 

The killer, Kenneth Dion, was arrested in New Hampshire in February 2003.  If NH had collected his DNA on arrest it could have cut 4 years off the 12 year struggle for justice.  The killer would have also been charged with kidnapping.  There was a 10 year statute of limitations on kidnapping so the delay of inputting the DNA into CODIS, the national DNA database, by NH was devastating to the case.  Prosecutors could not charged him with kidnapping or charge the case in a federal court.  Dion was finally convicted October 31st, 2011 and sentenced to 124 years in jail.

He has appealed the conviction and still says he didn't do it.

My mission is to get the collection of DNA on Arrest in all states and Canada.  Currently only 28 states collect DNA on Arrest.  Check to make sure your state is collecting DNA on Arrest.  No one should get away with murder, rape, nor any other heinous crime.  With collection of DNA on Arrest, they won't.


US Supreme Court RULES!

June 3, 2013
The US Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Collection of DNA on felony arrests!  Today's 5-4 decision allows states to collect DNA on Arrest.  It is a fabulous day that will go down in history for victims, their families, law enforcement and the courts.  It will help to start balance the scales of justice.  It will help protect the innocent and keep the innocent out of jail.

Collection of DNA on Arrest will save time, money and lives! In Bonnie's case, her killer was in jail 2 months before he killed her, out on parole when he killed her, and back in jail 2 months after killing her. The crime, had DNA been collected on arrest, could have been solved in months; it took 12 years to identify the killer and another 5 years to prosecute the killer. With DNA on Arrest so much pain will be spared; so many lives will be saved!

Read all about the decision in the New York Times.  Congratulations to all those who have fought so hard over the years to push for Collection of DNA on Arrest.  Currently, 28 states have passed legislation to collect DNA on Arrest.  We need to get all 50 states and Canada to collect DNA on Arrest.  Hooray it's Justice for All!


Protection of Victim's Rights

February 13, 2012
Victim's have a constitutional right to "timely disposition of their case."  That right is largely ignored in Alaska, and it is rarely a matter of protecting the right's of the accused.  It is due to poor case-flow management and judges living in fear of an appeal if any defense request is denied.  The delays are more for the convenience of defense attorneys personal schedules.

Senator Hollis French has introduced a bill, SB 135, that would help judges determine if delays are truly necessary.  It will help to speed up the process of getting a case to trial.  Delays are devastating to victims and their families. They live with the fear of the unknown wondering if justice truly will be served or could the killer get away with murder.  Delays almost always weaken the case for prosecution.  

Please read Anchorage Daily News Article then contact your senator and representative and ask for their support for SB 135.  We must ensure the law protects the constitutional rights of victims.  This will help balance the scales of justice.  Do your part; it will only take minutes.


Karen Foster

Dateline NBC airs show on "Justice for Bonnie"

January 10, 2012
Please tune in to Dateline this Friday 13th to better understand why so much has to change in our justice system.  Learn why DNA must be collected on all felony arrests in all 50 states and Canada.  In Bonnie's case the criminal could have been identified in months, instead it took 12 years.  Learn why timely disposition of a case is so critical.  Then please take action!  If you live in a state that doesn't collect DNA on ALL Felony Arrests, let your lawmakers know you support collection of DNA on ALL Felony Arrests.  Alaska does collect DNA on All Felony Arrests because of Bonnie's case.  

We need all Alaskans to let their Senator and Representative know that we want a victim's constitutional right to timely disposition honored.  Tell them to support Senator Hollis French's Bill for Timely Disposition.  Together, we can all make a difference to protect the innocent and balance the scales of justice.  

Hope you enjoy the show.  MS NBC Friday 13th.


Timely Disposition of a Case

January 10, 2012
In Alaska victims have a constitutional right to "timely disposition of their case."  That right is rarely realized as judges grant request after request for continuances in a case for fear of appeals.  Judges don't have enough control over the defense or prosecution to ensure that they are effectively doing their jobs.  There is no accountability or case-flow management.  Senator Hollis French is introducing a bill to help change this constant re-victimization.

Bonnie's killer was identified November 2006.  He was finally convicted and then sentenced October 2011.  It is not enough to say, "Well, at least the defendant is in jail and he/she won't be able to hurt anyone else."  Time erodes memories, witnesses and investigators get lost or die, evidence can get lost and so many technicalities could come up that could cause a mistrial, an acquittal, or a hung jury.  It is extremely harmful to a case to have delays.  Time weakens a case for the prosecution and causes more opportunities for a defendant to "get away with murder."

Families awaiting justice have their lives put on hold.  They live with an unbelievable fear of the defendant walking, especially in Alaska after Joshua Wade got away with Della Brown's murder.  Once the defendant is identified and arrested the family is virtually "gagged" for fear of causing a "change of venue," annoying a judge, or somehow harming their case.  Waiting is like having a cancer growing inside of you and not being able to do anything about all the delays. Imagine being told you have cancer and having to wait almost 5 years! In criminal cases, you can't decide to take your case to someone else or somewhere else.  You just have to sit there, saying nothing while you continue to wait.  Your life, as you knew it, is destroyed.  Relationships are destroyed, you often become a financial disaster.  Daily tasks become almost unmanageable.  Your children are going through a personal hell and you often aren't there to help and protect them.  The weight of the world rests on your shoulders as you try to continue living. You are now being victimized by those who are there to protect you and serve you.  Five years is too long. 

A defendant has a right to a speedy trial of 120 days.  Once they waive that right there is absolutely no consideration for the victims' right to timely disposition.  The court will claim protection of the right's of the accused, but rarely does it have anything to do with protecting the defendant's right.  

It is often more for the convenience of the defense attorney and the lack of efficiency of the Public Defender's office and the Office of Public Advocacy.  Judges don't have enough control of the defense attorneys with the constant threat of an appeal if any request is denied.  

Please take time to let your Alaska State Senator and your Alaska Representative know that you want to balance the scales of justice and protect a victim's right to "timely disposition."   No family should be held in fear of an outcome that long!  Ask them to support Senator French's bill for Timely Disposition of a Case. 

Thank you

Karen Foster


Not One More Child

November 19, 2011
More than 1,173 computers in Alaska are downloading crime scene videos of children being sexually abused and tortured. At one third of these locations, known to law enforcement, there is a child waiting to be rescued. The Not One More Child Coalition is asking our Governors and President Obama to declare a "State Of Emergency" We must rescue our children and protect them! Please go to Get the Facts and read the "White Paper." Write or email or call your Governor.

Rescue Our Children

November 10, 2011

URGENT MESSAGE: Thousands of children are being raped and tortured in the US. They are waiting to be rescued. With current technology, law enforcement have identified the exact location of computers that are downloading child pornography. These are crime scene videos of children under 12 being raped and tortured.  1/3 of these locations have a child waiting to be rescued. Surviving Parents Coalition and are asking President Obama and our Governors to protect our children. We want them to declare a "State of Emergency." Watch "Good Morning America" Thursday around 8:30 am then go to  We need to protect our children! They should be our first priority.
Please take the time to let them know our children come first!

In Alaska it is estimated that there are more than 1,173 locations downloading these crime scene videos.  That means there are  at least 390 children waiting to be rescued from sexual abuse and torture in Alaska.  Law enforcement know where they are but don't have the resources to investigate and prosecute these monsters.  They don't have the manpower to rescue the children.  We need to act now.  Go to  Call or email Governor Sean Parnell and President Obama.  In Alaska alone there are over 390 children counting on you and your voice. 


Karen Foster, Bonnie's Mom

Karen Foster Victims and families need to make sure that the CRIMINAL Justice system becomes more balanced and starts protecting the innocent, not just the guilty. Please help us balance the scales of justice. Don't wait until you are a victim to find out how broken the system is. Take 5 minutes to call your lawmakers or drop them an email to support funding for our new crime lab. It will save lives and prevent a lot of crimes by getting the criminals off our streets sooner. Juries expect scientific proof to convict the predators in our society. 5 minutes of your time is all I'm asking for; it will make a difference in our justice system.
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