Police use tobacco spit to nab burglary suspect

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Investigators in eastern Oklahoma used some unusual evidence to catch a suspect in a string of burglaries, tobacco spit the suspect left at crime scenes.

Randy Shoopman Jr. of Tahlequah is now charged with second-degree burglary in six eastern Oklahoma counties. He's a suspect in robberies in as many as 11 cities in Oklahoma and Missouri.

Stilwell police detective Chad Smith says while investigating the burglary of an insurance office he saw a tobacco stain and knew none of the women in the office chewed tobacco.

A sample of the spit was sent for testing and Smith spoke with Tahlequah police who already considered Shoopman a suspect in other robberies.

Police got a warrant to get a DNA sample from Shoopman which eventually connected him to several burglaries. Shoopman left Oklahoma before the DNA match but has been arrested in California on an unrelated charge.