Dogs and cell phone tracking were important parts of Thursday’s testimony in the retrial of Christopher Clements for the kidnapping and killing of 6-year-old Isabel Celis 12 years ago.

When the jurys been out of the room, defense attorneys have been up front about how their defense is to focus suspicion on somebody other than Clements and their focus is firmly on Isabel’s father Sergio Celis. They have been working to raise doubt about how any stranger could get the 6-year-old girl out of the house without waking up the rest of the family.

Clements’ DNA was not found in the Celis home.

One of the witnesses for the defense was a woman who lived in a house just a few feet from the Celis home. They were separated by a wall around the Celis residence.

This witness testified that the Celis family dogs would often bark if anyone came near the wall, but said she did not hear any dogs bark in the early morning hours when Isabel Celis disappeared.

The defense is also working to undermine the cell phone tracking that is a key part of the prosecution case against Clements.

A former police officer who developed software to track cell phones also testified in Clements’ previous trial on this case that Clements’ cell phone connected to a cell tower that covered the remote area where Isabel Celis’ body was foundand connected in the time period when the girl was discovered missing.

But the defense has called its own cell phone expert to question whether jurors can trust that tracking.

What’s not in dispute is the fact that Clements led investigators to Isabel Celis’ remains. He traded that information for getting some unrelated charges dropped. He told detectives he knew the location of her body but had nothing to do with her death.

The remains of another young girl, 13-year-old Maribel Gonzales, led to Clements’ standing trial for the Celis death.

Investigators found a partial DNA match to Clements on the remains of Gonzales, who went missing in 2014, found very close to where Isabel Celis’ bones were found years later.

That led them to see Clements as a suspect in the murder of the 6-year-old girl.

The defense called two different witnesses to discuss cell phone tracking and cell technology. 

Both said prosecutors are relying on unreliable methods to say on the night Isabel disappeared that Clements’ cell phone was near where Isabel Celis’ body was found years later. 

Some of the testimony involved computer screens with elaborate mapping and mathematical calculations. If that confused jurors, it likely ultimately helped the defense because confused jurors may say there’s too much reasonable doubt to convict.