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DNA on Milk bottle leads to Hastings burglary conviction

A man has been jailed after police found his DNA at the scene of a burglary in Hastings.

Officers attended Cafe Royale in Castle Street following a break-in in the early hours of the morning on September 7.

Entry had been forced into the premises causing damage to a door, and the till and tip box containing around £300 taken from inside.

Police viewed the cafe’s CCTV and saw a man entering the site with a carton of milk, which he put down while trying to remove the till, and then left behind at the scene.

The bottle was forensically examined and proved a DNA match for Jake Finn, 22, unemployed, of Dymchurch Road in Hythe, Kent.

Finn was arrested and charged with burglary other than dwelling with intent to steal. He was also charged with two counts of theft in relation to alcohol being stolen from the Jempson’s supermarket in Peasmarsh on September 10.

He appeared before Brighton Magistrates’ Court on Saturday (October 8) and was convicted of all three offences.

He was sentenced to 26 weeks in prison for the burglary, and one week for each shoplifting offence to run concurrently. He was also ordered to pay £300 in compensation.

Inspector Aidan Cornwall, of the Hastings Neighbourhood Policing team, said: “We understand the emotional and financial impact burglary has on individuals and businesses, and we are committed to finding those responsible for committing such crimes.

“This is the second Hastings burglary conviction in as many weeks thanks to the fantastic work of our Crime Scene Investigators, who will always follow-up on opportunities for forensic evidence. In this case, the DNA our investigators found proved vital in identifying a suspect and securing a conviction at court.

“We continue to thoroughly investigate reports of residential and commercial burglary in our community and urge people to get in touch if they see or hear of any suspicious behaviour.”

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