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Abductor DiMaggio's family wants paternity test for Calif. teen Hannah Anderson

4:07 PM, Aug 21, 2013   |    comments
(Photo: San Diego Sheriff's Department/AP)
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(USA TODAY) -- The family of kidnapping and murder suspect James DiMaggio wants paternity tests conducted to see if he is the father of the teenage girl he abducted and her slain 8-year-old brother, a family spokesman tells a San Diego TV station.

DiMaggio, 40, was killed by FBI agents at a wilderness campsite in Idaho on Aug. 10, six days after he abducted 16-year-old Hannah Anderson near San Diego.

Police say DiMaggio, a longtime family friend, is suspected of tying up Hannah's 44-year-old mother, Christina Anderson, and brother, Ethan, at his home near San Diego then setting fire to it with a delayed incendiary device.

Their bodies were found in the burning house, setting off the search along the West Coast for DiMaggio and his kidnap victim.

The children's father, Brett Anderson, lives in Tennessee.

In an unexpected twist in the story, DiMaggio left a $112,000 life insurance policy in the care of Hannah's grandmother, Bernice Anderson.

Andrew Spanswick, a spokesman for the DiMaggio family, told KGTV that he had expected the grandmother to take care of the two Anderson children with the money. He told the Associated Press on Monday that the beneficiary was changed in 2011 from DiMaggio's sister to Bernice Anderson.

"He stated he did not want it to go to their parents because they were having marital problems and he didn't trust them with the money on their own," Spanswick told KGTV.

According to Spanswick, the DiMaggio family is not challenging the insurance policy, but do want paternity tests to find out if DiMaggio is Hannah and Ethan's father.

"We are requesting DNA samples from Hannah and anything they can get from Ethan," he said. "There are rumors Jim was the children's real father. The parents didn't marry until 2002. We think it's strange he left them so much money with no explanation."

Brent Anderson said speculation about who the real father is is "disgusting," KCBS reports.

Spanswick also said Hannah's behavior since the ordeal, including some online posts, are raising suspicion, but he did not elaborate.

Only two days after her release, Hannah answered questions on the website ask.fm before her account was disabled.

Asked why she thought DiMaggio did it, the 16-year-old replied: "Because he's a psycho." She said he got what he deserved.

At one point, Hannah acknowledged that DiMaggio had told her he had a crush on her, but that it was "more of a family crush like he had feelings as in he wanted nothing bad to happen to me."

She said she didn't tell her parents because DiMaggio was her father's best friend "and I didn't want to ruin anything between them."

Contributing: The Associated Press


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