Christmas burglar caught after detectives discover footprint in dog poo

2 March 2020, 10:45

Rulinskas was jailed after being caught by the unique forensic find
Rulinskas was jailed after being caught by the unique forensic find. Picture: Norfolk Police
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

A serial burglar who stole children's Christmas presents was caught by detectives after a shoe print was found in dog mess at a crime scene.

Officers from Norfolk Police linked Tomas Rulinskas, of Chester Way, to a spate of burglaries after finding a hexagonal trainer print which matched his shoes.

The court heard Rulinskas burgled homes in Norwich while homeowners were still inside between 12 and 31 December 2019.

In addition, eight burglaries on the Abbey Estate and one attempted burglary at a property in Waterloo Close, Thetford, were also taken into account.

He was sentenced at Norwich Crown Court to two years and two months after pleading guilty to three counts of burglary and possession of a controlled substance (amphetamine). The court took a further nine counts of burglary into consideration.

Detectives linked stolen items, including high-value Christmas presents like iPads, taken from two of the properties to the contents of bins found at Rulinskas’ address.

Rulinskas was stopped by officers on 2 January 2020 after they thought they saw him involved in a drug deal, on searching him he was found in possession of white powder, which was tested and suggested the presence of amphetamine.

The officers then realised he matched the description of a wanted burglar.

The coat he was wearing matched CCTV footage from a burglary and a rucksack at his property also matched the bag used in a recent burglary.

iPads, a Nokia phone and gift cards which were Christmas presents, some which featured names of the grandchildren of one of the victims were among the items discovered in a black and green bin and suitcase full of property at Rulinskas’ address.

DC Mark Tate, from Thetford Police Station, said: "Burglary is a very intrusive crime and particularly distressing for families at Christmas time. We are committed to investigating these crimes and our forensic work helped to secure the successful conviction of a prolific burglar in this case.”