DNA test leads to arrest in transfer station break-in

By Tanya Mitchell | Nov 08, 2012
Source: Waldo County Jail Dakota Sanford

Belfast — A months-long investigation and a drop of blood that police located at the scene of a reported burglary at the Belfast Transfer Station last March resulted in the arrest of a Belfast man this week.

Dakota Sanford, 19, was arrested on charges of burglary and theft in connection with the case Friday, Nov. 2. According to records at the Belfast Police Department, the break-in at the transfer station occurred sometime March 27.

Belfast Detective Sgt. Bryan Cunningham said Sanford allegedly broke into the transfer station, gaining entry by smashing out a window. Sanford must have cut himself while climbing through the window, Cunningham said, because police found a drop of blood near the window during the initial investigation.

Cunningham said police collected that drop of blood from the scene, and then interviewed Sanford, after which time police acquired a DNA sample from him. Both of those samples, said Cunningham, went to the State Crime Lab in Augusta for testing and comparison.

Cunningham said police ordered the DNA test because while Sanford was a suspect in the break-in on the day it was reported, but he denied his involvement in the incident.

When the DNA results came back, Cunningham said, they showed the blood found at the scene was Sanford's.

Cunningham said he's not exactly sure what Sanford was trying to accomplish by breaking into the transfer station.

"There's pretty much nothing in there," said Cunningham. "[Sanford] said he didn't get anything, but they did say they were missing a flashlight."

Sanford is scheduled to appear at Waldo County Superior Court Thursday, Dec. 27.

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