Police use DNA from cigar to solve burglary

Posted at 4:49 PM, Dec 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-21 16:49:04-05

St. Petersburg Police used DNA found on a smoked cigar to solve a burglary that happened more than 3 months ago in South St. Petersburg.

"Two of their TV sets were stolen. Another TV had almost made its way out the back door. Things had been smashed. Somebody came in and ransacked the house." Yolanda Fernandez, SPPD Spokesperson, said.

Police say the burglary happened on September 9, after the people living in the home evacuated prior to Hurricane Irma.

Fernandez says nobody in the home smokes cigars, so they knew it had to be from the criminal.

"In the case of a used cigar, you know you're going to have DNA on that because it's been in a person's mouth." Fernandez said.

In this case, the DNA came back with a match to a 21-year-old career criminal, Marquell Watson.

"Watson has been arrested several times by our department so his DNA matched and we knew where to find him." Fernandez said.

Watson has been arrested multiple times in the city for gun charges, burglary, robbery, drugs and battery.