Petty criminals are not often noted for their cleverness. A burglar in Southern California proved this point in one of the most obvious — and grossest — ways imaginable.
According to the Associated Press, Andrew David Jensen, 42, was arrested in July for a burglary committed in Thousand Oaks in October. He was identified after police collected a DNA sample — from the toilet.
That’s right, Jensen took a potty break during the October break-in. Jensen, who lives in nearby Ventura, “did his business and didn’t flush it,” according to Ventura Police. This allowed investigators to take a sample and have it processed by the Ventura County Forensic Services Bureau. The DNA profile was then submitted to the Combined DNA Information System. Nine months later, the California Department of Justice came back with a hit, matching the DNA profile to Jensen, whose DNA profile was already in the database.
Jensen was arrested on suspicion of first-degree burglary, and his bail was set at $180,000.
This isn’t the first time fecal matter has been used to solve a case in Ventura County. A 1997 cold case murder was solved in 2014 with the help of samples of feces left at the crime scene.
It seems like it wouldn’t be all that hard to avoid leaving DNA evidence when you’re committing a crime. For those of us who have seen CSI,w e know there are a few steps you can take. Wear a hat, some gloves, and if you’re really obsessive, maybe some coveralls to avoid random hair or skin samples being left behind.
Oh, and some friendly advice. If you really, really, really have to go Number Two and you just can’t avoid it, maybe think about flushing the evidence when you’re done.
Props to the Ventura County Star for the best headline on this story: