DNA evidence links Liberty man to 2008 crime spree

Virgus Colt Browning III
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A Liberty man was arrested Wednesday after DNA evidence linked him to crimes committed four years ago.

Virgus Colt Browning III, 22, was arrested on three counts of felony burglary and a count of felony theft. The crimes were committed in August 2008 in Union and Fayette counties.

Indiana State Trooper Eric Thumb responded to a burglary report on Springersville Road, where he collected blood on a window believed to have been broken by the suspect. The trooper then took a report on a stolen bike a few houses away. The bike was found in a ditch in Fayette County and a blood sample was also collected from it.

More blood was found in a car stolen from a home near where the stolen bike was found. The car had crashed further down the road and Thumb collected another blood sample. The trooper then took another report for a stolen pick-up truck, which was found crashed later that evening in Fayette County. Thumb also took blood samples from the crashed truck.

The collection of blood samples was submitted to the State Police Lab for testing.

In January, the lab notified Thumb the blood matched a sample taken from Browning while he served a sentence for another charge with the Indiana Department of Correction. Blood samples are taken from inmates to add to a database kept on offenders, police say.

Browning was arrested at his home in a rural area outside of Liberty.