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Burglar Anthony McCoy, from Rochester, trapped by his DNA after breaking into homes in Shorne

A family returned home to be confronted by a bloody scene after a criminal cut himself while breaking in, a court heard.

Anthony McCoy desperately tried to clean up to avoid his DNA being found, but he failed miserably and police were soon able to link the 47-year-old with “many previous convictions” to the crime.

Maidstone Crown Court heard McCoy, of The Mariners, Valetta Way, Rochester, was undeterred by the experience and broke into another house shortly afterwards.

Anthony McCoy, jailed for four and a half years
Anthony McCoy, jailed for four and a half years

Prosecutor Christopher May said McCoy used the same method of entry through insecure windows at both houses in Shorne. He also used pillow slips at the scene of both to carry away property.

In the first break-in at Court Lodge on the evening of October 31 last year he stole jewellery, a laptop computer, porcelain figures and a pillow slip.

“Unfortunately, he cut himself and blood was found on a pillow and in the bathroom sink and a wall near the point of entry,” said Mr May.

“Water had been used to try to remove it, but scientific analysis confirmed it was the defendant’s DNA. He left the place in a mess.”

"You made an extremely messy, dirty attempt to remove that evidence" - judge Carroll

McCoy also stole jewellery from the second burglary in Burdett Avenue while the owners were out.

McCoy at first denied the blood was his.

“He said someone could have scooped the blood up and put it at the scene,” said Mr May.

Appearing by TV link with Elmley Prison, McCoy admitted both burglaries.

He had previous convictions dating back to the 1980s and had received various sentences including prison.

He was a “three strikes” burglar facing a minimum three-year jail sentence.

Jailing McCoy for four-and-a-half years, Judge Jonathan Carroll said he had targeted both houses.

“In the first you managed to cut yourself on the way in, leaving your blood which you immediately recognised would lead to DNA evidence,” he said.

“You made an extremely messy, dirty attempt to remove that evidence, no doubt to the distress of the householders.

“You are a well-established, entrenched burglar who has techniques you are willing to use when presented with the opportunity.”

The pair were jailed at Maidstone Crown Court
The pair were jailed at Maidstone Crown Court

The judge said McCoy’s background of mental health issues may be true but it did not impact on his decision to go out and burgle.

“The only relevant mitigation is your guilty plea,” he added.

Adrian Macho, defending, said McCoy suffered post traumatic stress syndrome having witnessed the terrorist killing of two friends in Ireland 10 years ago.

“He was suffering from mental health issues at the time of these offences,” said Mr Macho.

“He was released from his last sentence in July last year. He was effectively homeless.”
He owed about £26,000. His marriage also broke up. He felt very much alone in the world.”

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