Cops use DNA from pilfered Pepsi can to nail criminal
THOUGH involved in the burglary of a Toowoomba home from which a range of property was stolen, it was what teenager Brandon Jay Weatherall took from the fridge that led to his downfall.
As the home owner couple slept in their Jack St, Darling Hts, residence on the night of December 18, 2013, little did they know their house was being broken into.
Stolen during the burglary had been a laptop computer, an Apple iPod and Apple iPad, a cruiser bicycle, tobacco products and a man's wallet, Toowoomba Magistrates Court heard.
However, burglary is thirsty work, apparently, and Weatherall had helped himself to a can of Pepsi from the refrigerator which, after a few sips, he had left on a table before making good his exit.
It was not until the next morning that the couple rose from bed to find their home had been broken into, Police prosecutor Senior Constable Alistair Windsor told the court.
However, as police investigated the burglary, the complainants noted the Pepsi drink on the table and told police it had not been left there by them.
A forensic swab of the lip of the can provided a sample of DNA which was eventually matched to Weatherall, the court heard.
Snr Const. Windsor said none of the property had been recovered but he had no instructions to seek restitution.
Weatherall, now 19, pleaded guilty to entering a dwelling and committing an indictable offence.
His solicitor Divina DeLeon told the court her client was 17 at the time and he instructed he had not received any of the stolen property.
Magistrate Damian Carroll noted Weatherall had another conviction at that time which was of a different nature but warned him "this was serious".
Without recording a conviction, Mr Carroll fined Weatherall $1000.