Watch CBS News

Program To Use DNA Tool To Help Track Down Stolen Valuables In Camden County

By John McDevitt and Cleve Bryan

BLACKWOOD, N.J., (CBS) -- Residents of Camden County now have a new tool in protecting their valuables -- an invisible plant-based DNA marking kit that could help get stolen property returned to owners.

Police departments throughout Camden County are training on how to identify DNA imprints on recovered items and encouraging people to buy asset marking kits.

"The marking of valuables with plant based DNA is simply the modern version of engraving treasured items with owners initials or other personal identifiers," says Chief Harry Earle, president of the Camden County Police Chiefs Association.

The Association has partnered with the technology company Applied DNA Sciences to make Camden the first county in the nation to implement a DNA asset tracking program.

Camden County residents can get a home asset DNA marking kit from Applied DNA Sciences' website for about $70. The invisible house plant DNA matter is uniquely registered to you. It can be dabbed on to 100 possessions from a diamond ring to a car. It will not wear off. It can be detected by ultraviolet light and once recovered by law enforcement possibly be traced back to you.

"The Home asset DNA marking enables law enforcement to remove a sample DNA from the found property and determine its owner generally within 48 hours," said Chief Earle.

DNA protected warning stickers can be placed on windows and doors and be a possible deterrent to would-be thieves.

This is the first time that law enforcement in an entire county in the U.S. is participating in the program.

More information about DNA Home Asset Marking can be found at:

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.