“Forensic Files” episode airs 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 19.


    For those of you who, like me, constantly get sucked into forensic documentary shows, a case from our own backyard will be featured at 9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 19, on the truTV series “Forensic Files.”

    The show’s producers contacted Dover Post News Editor Jeff Brown in February of this year, saying they wanted his input on a program about the 1991 murder of Dorothy Donovan in her home on a lonely road near Harrington. Taping of the segment was completed in the Dover Post’s offices in March.

    The Dover Post initially covered this incident as a cold case story in 2001, with follow-ups in 2002, 2006 and 2007.

    Here’s Jeff’s take on the case: No one was seen near Donovan’s house that night, although her son told investigators he had given a man a ride that evening, then kicked him out of his truck after they began arguing. Although they had a description, the police had no other solid leads.

    But Delaware State Police detectives kept going back to the case, and new technology eventually allowed them to match evidence at the scene with the DNA of a man who had been jailed in Maryland.

    The suspect, 42-year-old Gilbert Cannon, admitted breaking into the house, but said he did not remember stabbing Donovan. Cannon pled guilty to the murder in 2007, and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.

    While Post staffers, including Jeff, understandably weren’t permitted an advanced viewing of the show, we can’t wait to see it. I know my DVR will be set.

*****

    The nature of business has gotten, for lack of a better word, interesting these past few months. Two brand-new restaurants closed at Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, just mere months after opening. A longtime Dover business, Stock Building Supply, used its own plywood to board up and shut down a few weeks ago.

    Central Delaware is not alone in losing businesses. In visiting my family on Long Island last weekend, I was amazed at how many stores that have been there my entire life are now gone. It actually happened twice in just a few days that my plans to run errands were foiled by empty storefronts, leaving me to wonder what was open.

    In retrospect, we’ve lost some businesses here but not nearly as much as what I saw this weekend — and I hope that remains the case.

Email Maureen Raitz at maureen.raitz@doverpost.com.