Mask found in burglarized home leads right to repeat offender, police say

DNA from dropped mask results in arrest

WESTFIELD, Ind. - Felony burglary charges have been lodged against an ex-con after police said he left behind a mask with his DNA at a home he was burglarizing in Carmel.

It started as police were investigating the burglary of a home that was under construction on Pete Dye Boulevard in Carmel  in November 2012, when officers located a camouflage mask on the basement floor of the ransacked construction site.

Construction workers told police that the mask didn't belong to any of them, so police sent the mask to the Indiana State Police crime lab so that DNA could be analyzed.

The DNA from the mask, which could include hair or saliva, led to a quick match in the nationwide Combined DNA Index System (CODIS), which contains DNA profiles for millions of current and former convicts and others throughout the country.

In court papers, Westfield police said tests showed that the DNA from the mask belonged to Gary Fairchild, 29, who has been to prison twice for other burglaries in 2004 and again in 2009. State prison records show he was out on parole for those crimes until 2016.

Fairchild has now been charged with new felony counts of burglary and theft.  He is behind bars at the Hamilton County Jail on a $10,000 bond. His trial is set for May 14 in Hamilton County Superior Court 3.

In addition to Young's DNA, police have obtained a search warrant for his cellphone records to see whether he sent or received calls or text messages near the most recent crime scene around the time that it was being burglarized.

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