Whodunnit? Twins deny DNA theft link

A police investigation into the theft of £10,000 of watches has been scuppered after DNA evidence was found to belong to identical twins.

Blood containing DNA matching that of James and John Parr, 25, was found on glass at the scene. However, the Crime Prosecution Service (CPS) has decided not to press charges against the Manchester twins – who both deny responsibility – as it would be impossible to determine if one or the other of them was responsible.

"The police told us they suspected it was one of us but we both denied it," said James, a father of one. "I didn't do anything wrong. I was watching my daughter that night." He said his job at JD Sports had been called into question. "I had to explain to work that I had been arrested," he added. "I'm angry about it. I think it's wrong that I had to explain myself for nothing."

John also denied responsibility for the crime, which took place at Bury's Mill Gate shopping centre last November. He refused to comment further.

Rob Pett, a spokesman for the CPS, said: "DNA tests showed that the blood belonged to one of two identical twins. However, both suspects denied the offence and provided statements. Unless further evidence becomes available, we are unable to authorise any charge."

Mr Pett added: "This is certainly not something we regularly encounter."

Identical twins have hindered police investigations a number of times since the advent of DNA testing. In Malaysia last year, a man suspected of drug-smuggling and sentenced to death was released when the court could not prove whether it was he or his twin brother might have committed the crime.

Three masked men broke into Kaufhaus des Westens, a Berlin department store, last year and smashed open cabinets before making off with an estimated £4.5m worth of jewellery and watches. Police found sweat on a latex glove used by the criminals and ran the DNA through their databases. Two matches were found but it could not be determined which twin had committed the crime.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Tour de France 2015: Twins Simon and Adam Yates have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Twins have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Yates brothers will target the steepest sections in bid to win a stage in France
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life