20 Unexpected And Funny Clues That Led to Case Closure

Solving crime requires intricate investigation and a great eye for detail. Some cases take months or years and still remain unsolved. Surprisingly, some cases have unexpected solutions due to a mundane piece of evidence.

Here are the top 20 such pieces of evidence that solved a crime case:

The Telltale Parrot

In a bizarre twist, a pet parrot became the crucial witness in a murder case. Glenna Duram killed her husband by shooting at him five times. However, the police could only zero in on her as the killer because of their pet parrot. The parrot repeated the victim’s words, “Don’t shoot,” which helped the police convict Glenna.

Pizza Crust DNA

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A pizza crust helped police find a person of interest in a series of eleven murders. In one of the crime scenes, the murderer unexpectedly left a half-eaten pizza crust. Police traced the DNA from the crust to an architect, Rex Heuermann. They charged him with three counts of murder but suspect he is behind all eleven.

Pollen Analysis

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Forensic palynology, or pollen analysis, is a key to solving many cases. It is a lesser-known method and is strange for laymen. However, pollen analysis was the main evidence in identifying the victim in the Baby Doe case. It is also one of the evidence in identifying the victim in the 1979 teenage girl case.


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Strangely, trees help identify crimes against themselves. The rings of a tree are distinct and act as fingerprints for that particular tree. Dendrochronologists use these tree rings to solve environmental crime and counter illegal loggers. They can match them with lumber to identify wood smugglers and illegal tree cutters.

Social Media

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Social media is a major evidence in several murder and kidnapping cases. Often, criminals are careless and leave obvious clues on their social media platforms. Tools like reverse image search help investigators determine the suspect’s location. The murder of Britney Gargol was a famous case where social media served as key evidence.

The Accidental Butt-Dial

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An unintentional butt-dial helped solve a murder within 7 hours in Los Angeles. Kevin Orellana lost his life when two brothers punched and stabbed him with a knife. One of the fleeing criminals made a butt call which recorded the details. Police used the call recording to charge the two brothers with murder.

Fitbit Data

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In a murder case, the victim’s Fitbit activity helped identify the perpetrator. In 2018, 67-year-old Karen Navarra’s life ended in a cold-blooded murder. She was still wearing her Fitbit, which indicated the exact time her heart stopped. The police verified the data with CCTV footage to arrest her stepfather for killing her.

Cat fur

Beautiful main coon cat on cat tree
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Cat fur has also been instrumental in solving several murder cases. In a case in Britain, police charged a man with manslaughter thanks to his cat’s DNA. The cat accidentally left some of its hair on the victim, which the police analyzed. They also used a database of DNA from 152 cats in Britain to narrow down the suspect.

Google Searches

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Often, planned crimes start with a Google search. In various cases, a murderer’s search history includes how to commit a crime and hide evidence. For example, Brian Walshe searched for ways to dispose of a body before killing his wife. The police could easily collect this data and present it as evidence.

The Incriminating Tattoo

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In a bizarre case, police identified the murderer by studying his tattoo. A gangster, Anthony Garcia, killed 23-year-old John Juarez in a bar. Later, the criminal got the crime scene tattooed in great detail on his chest. The police discovered this evidence and arrested the gangster four years later.

A Microscopic Organism

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For murders involving drowning or water bodies, microscopic organisms serve as great evidence. Algae, diatoms, and bacteria found on the victim’s body can help identify the cause of death. Police use the diatom test to determine if the victim was alive during drowning. The amount of diatoms in the lungs can also help determine if the victim died before drowning in the water.

The Unseen Text Messages

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Deleted messages and unseen texts serve as evidence in numerous crime cases. Investigators often check message timings to determine any loopholes in the suspects’ stories. This clue may seem trivial to the layman. However, many perpetrators have inadvertently given away crucial details in texts.

Smart Home Devices

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Just like Fitbit, data from smart home devices also gives helps solve crimes. Devices like voice assistants and thermostats collect a lot of data. This can give insights into the suspects’ and victims’ movements. This might be an unlikely source of evidence, but it is essential for many investigations.

The Echo of a Gunshot

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Gunshot audio analysis is also a unique way to crack a crime case. In some cases, the gunshot sound is accidentally recorded in a bystander’s phone. Even if they are far away from the crime scene, audio analysis helps determine the exact location. This way, police can zero in on who was responsible for the crime.

Wear Patterns in Clothing

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Clothes usually have unique patterns, which are enough to identify the perpetrator. In a 1968 incident, police solved the mysterious murder of Claire by looking at her clothes. She wore a woolen dress, leaving several fibers on the murderer’s clothes. Police later arrested Payne when they found woolen fibers on his clothing.

Cigarette Butt

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In Louisiana, police caught a serial rapist using cigarette butts. The rapist had a habit of leaving cigarette butts in all his crime scenes. Investigators found his DNA on them and charged Randy Comeaux with the crimes. Surprisingly, he was a former sheriff’s deputy in the same police department.

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