DNA Leads Cops to ATM Cold Case Arrests

Police followed a trail of DNA to nab two suspects in a two-year old brazen ATM theft that happened at a Target in Trumbull.

In February 2007, two men broke into the store before it opened by prying open the doors with a crowbar, the Connecticut Post reports. Their tool collection also included a cordless saw and dollies, which they used to threaten employees and cut the ATM from the wall.

The men loaded the money machine into a stolen van and fled, the Post reports.

Despite a police chase and a collision with an off-duty Bridgeport officer, the men got away.

But that crash proved to be valuable for two reasons. One is that the cash was left behind, the Post reports. The other was the men’s DNA.

The crash activated the airbags, which is where investigators found the DNA, which linked Ricardo Hernandez, 30, and Roberto Franco, 36, both of Bridgeport, to the vehicle, according to police and news reports.

Hernandez and Franco were no strangers to run-ins with the law, which is how their DNA was on file. They gave samples as part of an unrelated burglary investigation, the Post reports.

Hernandez was charged with first-degree robbery, first-degree larceny and first-degree burglary. His bond was set at $100,000.

Franco was arraigned on the same charges, along with engaging in police pursuit. His bond was set at $150,000.

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