A NEW intruder spray that uses forensic DNA to link offenders directly to the crime scene is being introduced to small retailers in Lancashire as a highly effective robbery deterrent.
Small convenience stores and newsagents selling high value items such as alcohol and cigarettes have been targets for robbers in the past, but the new system known as the SelectaDNA Intruder Spray, can be fitted to multiple doors and windows, immediately target-hardening any building.
The Lancashire Partnership Against Crime (LANPAC), a charitable organisation which supports crime prevention and community safety schemes, is behind the initiative and has the full support of Lancashire Constabulary.
A spokesman from LANPAC said: “After securing £50,000 funding from the Home Office for various community safety projects, we decided to purchase 14 DNA spray systems along with other security products to deter burglary from up to 100 small retail outlets in vulnerable areas of Blackburn with Darwen, Blackpool, Burnley, Pendle and Preston.”
Already in use in New Zealand and the Netherlands, the SelectaDNA Intruder Spray is proving to be one of the most effective ways to deter commercial burglaries and smash-and-grab raids.
Once activated, the DNA spray emits a burst of hi-tech forensic solution onto the offenders. The solution contains a UV tracer and a unique DNA code, linking them irrefutably to the scene of the crime.
Traces of the DNA solution can be taken from the skin, hair and clothing of offenders, and sent away for forensic analysis to prove that they have broken into a particular premises. Although invisible and harmless, the UV and DNA will remain on an offender for weeks - clinging to fibres and sitting in creases of the skin.
Police routinely scan for traces of SelectaDNA in custody suites, and if they find it, it can help Police to obtain a conviction. Police often know who the thieves are, but don’t have evidence to convict them or link them to the crime. DNA is the link.
The spray can be integrated into an existing shop alarm system or run stand alone with its own panic button. Warning signs and window stickers are supplied to alert potential criminals that the system is in use and to dissuade them from targeting the protected premises.
Mr Yusuf from LANPAC, concluded: “The new spray systems will give shopkeepers in vulnerable areas added protection and peace of mind.
“If the worst happens and a robber does enter the premises by force, they will be sprayed with the DNA which links them instantly to the crime scene. However, it is extremely likely that they would flee with no gain as soon as they are sprayed, as the DNA fear-factor among criminals is high.”
For further information and images contact: Angela Singleton, Press Officer for Selectamark.
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