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German Police Solve 9-Year-Old Burglary Case Using DNA Found on a Half-eaten Sausage

DNA from sausage helps find burglar | Image credit: Reuters

DNA from sausage helps find burglar | Image credit: Reuters

Police in the western town of Schwelm said sausage belonged to the victim, and the suspect — a 30-year-old Albanian citizen — appeared to have helped himself to a bite during the March 2012 break-in.

German police say they have solved a nine-year-old burglary after DNA found on a half-eaten piece of sausage matched that of a man detained in France over an unrelated crime.

Police in the western town of Schwelm said Thursday that the sausage belonged to the victim, and the suspect — a 30-year-old Albanian citizen — appeared to have helped himself to a bite during the March 2012 break-in.

It wasn’t clear what type of sausage — known in Germany as wurst — the burglar had nibbled, though police said it was a hard variety.

Investigators were recently alerted that French police had taken a matching DNA sample from a man involved in a violent crime.

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But Schwelm police said the suspect remains free and, in the ‘wurst’ case, he may escape punishment. The statute of limitations on the burglary has expired, meaning he will likely not be extradited to Germany.

This is not the first time that DNA found in strange places has helped authorities catch criminals. Earlier in March, a Nebraska man was linked to a grisly murder in Colorado from 1981. Authorities cracked down on the accused after they found traces of his DNA on a discarded can of Vanilla Coke and used it to track down the man with the help of genetic genealogy. 62-year-old David Dwayne Anderson is currently facing two counts for murder in the first degree.

(With inputs from Associated Press)

first published:March 12, 2021, 14:50 IST