• BREAKING NEWS ABC shows live and on-demand -- Download the WATCH ABC app!

Amber Alert suspect's family wants DNA test on Hannah Anderson, brother

James DiMaggio, 40, Hannah Anderson, 16, and Ethan Anderson, 8, are seen in these undated photos. The two minors are missing, and authorities say DiMaggio may have abducted them.
August 21, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
The family of a man suspected of kidnapping 16-year-old Hannah Anderson and killing her mother and brother wants paternity tests to determine if the suspect fathered the children.

Andrew Spanswick, a spokesman for the family of James Lee DiMaggio, said rumors have circulated on social media that DiMaggio fathered the children. He also noted that it was "a little strange" that DiMaggio named Hannah Anderson's paternal grandmother as the beneficiary of his life insurance, worth about $110,000. DiMaggio's sister was the beneficiary until 2011.

"[He] expected the grandmother to use the money to take care of the two children. He had stated specifically that he didn't want to give it to either parent because he didn't trust them," said Spanswick.

But Hannah Anderson's family was quick to refute the suggestion that DiMaggio is the father. According to a family spokesperson, DiMaggio didn't meet the parents, Brett and Christina Anderson, until Christina was six months pregnant with Hannah. But DiMaggio's friends dispute that timeline.

The spokesperson also added that investigators used Brett Anderson's DNA to confirm the identity of 8-year-old Ethan Anderson, whose remains were found in the rubble of DiMaggio's burned home. Police have not confirmed that information.

Hannah Anderson was rescued Aug. 10 when FBI agents killed DiMaggio in the Idaho wilderness, ending a multi-state Amber Alert.

San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore has called Hannah "a victim in every sense of the word." But there are many unanswered questions, including why the family went to DiMaggio's home, how Christina and Ethan Anderson died, the nature of letters from Hannah that were discovered in DiMaggio's home, and how Hannah was treated in captivity.

Authorities revealed that DiMaggio used a timer to set the fire at his house, giving him a 20-hour jump on police, said Jan Caldwell, a spokeswoman for the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.

Meanwhile, a public memorial for Ethan and Christina Anderson is scheduled for Saturday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Load Comments