Blood links Ulster man to Saugerties burglary

Johnnie Lancaster of the Town of Ulster, 25, was convicted by a jury of first-degree burglary and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon on Feb. 27, according to the county District Attorney’s Office.

On Feb. 23, 2018, authorities said, a Saugerties family awoke to find a crossbow bolt embedded in their living room wall, a broken window and a bloodied axe. A screen on a screened-in porch had been torn, the door to the porch was unlocked and blood was found near a broken basement window. According to police, no one was harmed and nothing had been stolen.

Five days later, a crossbow, bolts and a backpack were found in the backyard of their Stage Road property, authorities said. Inside the backpack, police recovered a SIM card, which they traced back to Lancaster. He was sent to Ulster County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bail. All of the blood evidence at the scene matched Lancaster’s DNA profile, the District Attorney’s Office said.


The jury deliberated for “approximately 19 minutes” before coming to their verdict, the DA’s Office said. Lancaster could serve up to 25 years in state prison; a sentencing date was not immediately available. Lancaster was represented by Mikael Cohn of the Ulster County Public Defender’s Office.