A three-year-old arson and break-in spree was solved thanks to technology and a new state law.
Kent Crozier was recently indicted after investigators said a statewide database found a match to his blood and DNA found at the scene of a break-in in the City of Delaware.
Phillip Hopkins said that he was devastated when his business was broken into in 2009.
Instead of spending Thanksgiving 2009 with his family, he spent time with firefighters trying to salvage anything he could from his Delaware paint company.
“When something like this first happens to you, you’re really angry, upset and wish the worse on the person who did it,” Hopkins said.
Two months prior to the Thanksgiving break-in, someone broke into his business twice.
“One of those times, they stole the van and some money,” Hopkins said. “Another time, they just stole money and some spray paint.”
Delaware police Cpt. Adam Moore said that police spent years trying to match the DNA found at the scene.
“The suspect had forced entry into the paint store, and in doing so, had cut themselves,” Moore said.
Police finally connected the DNA to Crozier, who recently was convicted of assaulting a police officer in Lucas County.
“If you’re arrested for a felony crime, it is required to get a DNA sampling,” Moore said. “That DNA is then entered into a database.”
Crozier’s DNA was a match. Police said that he attended Ohio Wesleyan University, just feet from the paint store.
Police said that they were also able to connect Crozier to an arson at the paint store, because keys that were stolen during an earlier break-in were found at the scene of the fire.
Hopkins said that he was happy police could finally solve the case.
“I guess it was a relief to know that we didn’t make anyone mad, that we didn’t know the guy,” Hopkins said.
Investigators said that once Crozier finishes serving time for the assault in Lucas County, he will face new charges in Delaware County.
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