Debbie Hawk's remains to be returned to her family

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A judge has ruled Debbie Hawk's remains can be returned to her family. The decision exempts her fingernails which are still being preserved. (KFSN)

A Kings County judge has ruled the remains of murdered South Valley mother, Debbie Hawk, should be returned to her family.

The decision was made Tuesday after a Department of Justice criminalist testified he could not get conclusive evidence from the bones and acrylic nails he analyzed.

The defense attorney asked for the DNA analysis in case there was any evidence left from a suspect.

Dave Hawk was not in court, but his attorney asked the judge to ban loved ones from cremating her remains. He wants to have the option to analyze them again, in case new scientific testing becomes available. But the judge returned the remains without any conditions.

The DNA expert said because the remains were in dirt and exposed to weather elements including sun, heat and cold, it degraded the DNA. Since there was no skin and tissue on the remains, it was also difficult to find any sign of a killer. In fact, not even Debbie's DNA could be found underneath her fingernails.

Debbie was killed in 2006.

Debbie Hawk's remains were found by farm workers near Stratford in March of 2016. She was a 43-year-old mother of three when she went missing from her Hanford home in 2006. Her estranged husband, Dave Hawk was convicted of her murder. He is currently serving a life sentence at Mule Creek State Prison without the possibility of parole.

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The body of Debbie Hawk is found on March 21, 2016 - nearly 10 years since she went missing.

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