Carrollton Police are using an unconventional method to solve a recent crime – fingerprints pulled from cheese.
The story began when a resident called police earlier this week to report that his vehicle had been significantly vandalized the night before while parked in his driveway. When officers arrived, they found a sticky scene of about 24 slices of cheese plastered all over the vehicle.
“We see a lot of strange things, but this was certainly a first for us,” said Jolene DeVito, spokesperson for the Carrollton Police Department. “Our responding officer noticed right away that the scene was a good candidate for quality fingerprints, so he called in our crime scene investigator (CSI) who specializes in print recovery.”
DeVito said many people don’t understand that some surfaces are conducive to good fingerprints. In this case, the cheese was smooth enough to allow police to get a clear view of the fingerprints left behind. Police took to Facebook after the incident to share the odd discovery.
"Today we learned two things: Covering cars in cheese slices is apparently the new trend in criminal mischief. Cheese slices produce great fingerprints,” the post stated.
DeVito said the cheese itself didn’t leave any damage but did leave behind a big mess. There was more serious damage made to the car, but police aren’t releasing the details of that damage for investigative purposes, she said.
Police do have leads on locating the perpetrators. While the exact charge depends on the amount of the damage, the vandals will most likely face a criminal mischief charge, DeVito said.
While the plastered cheese incident is the first police have encountered, this isn’t the first time police have had to use odd methods to find suspects. DeVito said the same CSI who lifted the prints from the cheese was able to identify a fraud suspect in a unique way.
“We had a picture of her thumb, and he was able to actually “print” and positively identify her using only the photograph,” she said.