Craig Bailey & Megan Mckernan [A Touching Recollection] Forensic Files Case Study

How Megan Mckernan Helped in Craig Bailey Arrested? (Full Summary)

How Megan Mckernan Helped in Craig Bailey Arrested (Full Summary)
  • Year of Incident: May 6, 2000
  • Region: Jackson Township, North Canton, Ohio
  • Victim: Megan Mckernan (name changed, not real name)
  • Culprit: Craig Bailey (Craig Scott Bailey)
  • Forensic File Case: A Touching Recollection (Forensic Files- Season 7, Episode 13)

Megan Mckernan, an 18-year-old girl, lived in Jackson, North Canton, Ohio, with his brother Jamie Mckernan and his wife Stephanie Mckernan. On May 6, 2000 night, both girls were inside the house, and suddenly they heard a strange sound. Stephanie grabbed the spray paint and Megan grabbed the flashlight.

In the front of the house, a stranger (claiming to be a policeman) put girls at gunpoint. Both sisters try to overpower the stranger but failed to do so. He forced Megan to his pickup truck and drove away.

Stephanie informed the police and they searched for her. After a few hours, Megan somehow managed to get back to her sister’s house. She was immediately brought to a nearby hospital. 

She informed the police about the assailant’s car details and the place (Boyds corner) where she was sexually assaulted. 

Megan Mckernan also helped the police in sketching him which was later circulated in local newspapers.

An anonymous caller leads police to Douglas Bailey (vehicle owner). The details provided by Megan match Douglas’ truck. 

Police collected fingerprints from the car which matched Megan’s fingerprints. On searching Douglas’ house, investigators confiscated shoes matched with the shoeprints at the crime scene. Those shoes belonged to Craig Bailey, Douglas’s son.

They matched. The tire marks of the car also matched.

Megan also identified Craig’s photo among the 6 contenders. Forensic scientist, Jennifer Bloink analyzed the DNA which matches Craig’s DNA using the DQ alpha DNA test. The bloodstain collected inside the car matches Megan’s DNA.

Craig was charged and convicted of first-degree kidnapping, sexual assault, and felonious assault and sentenced to 46 years in prison. 

Who was Megan Mckernan? What happened to her?

Megan Mckernan (18 years) lives with her brother – Jamie Mckernan and his wife Stephanie Mckernan in Jackson town of Ohio.

She was threatened by Craig Bailey who claimed to be a policeman. On resisting, Craig attacked Megan and Stephanie and dragged Megan to his pickup truck.

He then took her to Boyds corner and sexually assaulted her in his vehicle. He dropped her at a place near her house and left.

A police patrolman (placed at the crime scene) reported her to the investigators.

Police immediately took her to a nearby hospital for treatment and preservation of evidence.

Who was Craig Bailey? Where he is Now?

Who was Craig Bailey What his Conviction

Craig Bailey (28 years) was the son of Douglas Bailey who was released on parole after 7 years of 25 years sentence for burglary. 

Police arrested him at the alcohol recovery center. He pleaded not guilty in the preliminary hearing. 

After DNA confirmation, he was sentenced to 46 years in prison on a conviction of first-degree kidnapping, sexual assault, and felonious assault and sentenced to 46 years in prison. 

He was also sentenced to the remaining 18 years of prison for the previous criminal charge. So, a total of 46+ 18 years= 64 years but readjusted to 52 years.

  • Craig is now Incarcerated at the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation & Correction (ODRC) in Columbus, OH
  • Released Date: 2052-04-25 (after 21 days of 80th birthday, 1972-04-04)

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Forensic Evidence Against Craig Bailey

Types of EvidenceForensic Significance
1. Megan’s sweatshirt and sandal, rifle’s scope cover at the crime scene.Corroboration with Stephanie’s information about Megan’s abduction.
2. Vehicle details provided by Megan 
-> Vehicle model
-> Color
-> Tweety air freshener on the rearview mirror
-> Bump on the back of the vehicle
Helped in the identification of the suspected vehicle (pickup truck) 
3. Megan’s smudged fingerprints (outside and inside) of the vehicle. Megan’s blood stains inside the car.Douglas Bailey’s pickup truck (suspected vehicle) was used.
4. Tire-marks   Helped in matching suspected vehicles used for crime.
5. Shoes collected at Douglas’ houseMatching with shoe prints at the crime scene indicated Craig’s presence.
6. Facial details provided by MeganCraig’s appearance match with the sketch prepared on Megan’s details.
7. DNA Test kit analysisDNA matched with Craig’s DNA leading to his conviction.

Forensic Experts in the Case and Their Role

Expert/InvestigatorsTheir Role in Case
1. Megan Bowenzi (Sergeant)Helped the Mckernan family in search of Megan.
2. Tim Taylor(Detective)Identification, collection, and preservation of crime scene evidence.
3. William Braman (Patrolman)Reported the sighting of Megan.
4. Dennis FloreaAnalysis of fingerprints collected.
5. Jennifer Bloink (Forensic Scientist)DNA analysis

Forensic Analysis in Craig Bailey Case

1. Fingerprints   

Fingerprint analysis is one of the most popular techniques used for solving criminal cases.

The overall technique includes:

  • Development of fingerprint: Powder development, iodine fuming, cyanoacrylate fuming.
  • Preservation: Photographing, and lifting using tape or lifters.
  • Comparison of ridge patterns (Arches, Whorls, Loops) along with minute ridge details (bifurcations, island, bridge, etc.).

In this case, police collected the fingerprints from the suspected vehicle using hinge lifters which matched Megan’s fingerprints indicating her presence in the vehicle.

2. Shoe Prints

Police on searching Douglas’ house, collected a pair of shoes that belonged to his son Craig Bailey

They developed the shoe print on an adhesive tape sheet using a roller and fingerprint powder and compared it with shoe prints obtained at the crime scene.

The size, shape, and individual characteristics (cuts, marks, breaks, etc.) of both prints matched. This proves Craig’s presence at the crime scene.

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3. Tire marks

Tire marks obtained from Douglas’ vehicle, the crime scene and Boyds corner were compared and found to match. 

This leads to the conclusion that the same vehicle was present at the abduction as well as at the Boyds site (where Megan assaulted).

4. Facial Reconstruction

facial reconstruction of craig bailey

Megan provided facial details of Craig which helped in sketching him.

  • Stocky
  • Blonde with facial hair.
  • Piercing blue eyes.
  • A crescent mark between the eyes due to the flashlight. (Resistance attack by Megan)

Craig’s facial features match the sketch prepared and become conclusive evidence of his involvement.

5. Brentamine’s Reagent

Brentamine (Acid Phosphatase) test detects the presence of seminal fluid in the sample by color change (Orange to Purple)

The sexual assault test kit from the hospital was tested with Brentamine’s reagent. The purple color developments confirm the presence of seminal stain in the kit.

6. Saliva Analysis

The analysis of saliva is based on the reaction of salivary amylase enzymes with starch-containing dye. The blue color development indicated the presence of saliva.

7. DQ Alpha DNA Test

The test is based on the identification of 6 specific DQ alleles as a series of dots on a strip. Seminal stains, saliva, and Craig’s DNA were matched using the test which confirms the sexual assault Megan was done by Craig. 

Also, the bloodstain in the vehicle matched Megan’s DNA.

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How Megan and Her Sister-in-law Stephanie helped the Police in Solving Case?

Information provided by Megan and Stephanie Mckernan to police:

  • Description of vehicle: Chevy S10 with a dark cap. 
  • Being taken to Boyds corner.
  • Tweety air freshener on the rearview mirror.
  • Deliberate fingerprints on the outside of the pickup truck.
  • Bump on the back of the vehicle while reversing it.
  • Facial description of the assailant.
  • Identification of Craig from 6 potential contenders’ photographs.


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