The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals dismissed a theft case where the amount stolen was over $10,000. Mr.Sisk was originally convicted of aggravated burglary and theft of property and based upon his prior record received 27 years in prison.The evidence at trial consisted only of a cigarette butt that was inside the house. One problem for the defense was the cigarette butt had Mr.Sisk’s DNA evidence. No other evidence of a burglary or theft were present. No stolen goods were on his person No fingerprints or eyewitness identification was presented.
The Court of Criminal Appeals found the evidence was insufficient and dismissed the case.The Court found the mere presence of of a single cigarette partially smoked by the defendant is neither sufficient to weave inescapable web of guilt around Mr.Sisk to exclude every other reasonable theory.
The point here is that sufficiency of the evidence argument seldom work at the appellate level. Secondly , DNA won’t get a conviction every time.