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July 20, 2024, 09:16:25 am
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Author Topic: Feds to Collect DNA from everyone arrested  (Read 21373 times)
T-Town Elder
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These Aren't the Droids You're Looking For

« Reply #30 on: January 22, 2019, 09:58:52 pm »

As police agencies build out their local DNA databases, they are collecting DNA not only from people who have been charged with major crimes but also, increasingly, from people who are merely deemed suspicious, permanently linking their genetic identities to criminal databases.

“It’s a lot harder to resist the temptation just to run some people’s DNA, just to see if there’s anything useful that you get out of it,” said Erin Murphy, a law professor at New York University and author of “Inside the Cell: The Dark Side of Forensic DNA.” That approach challenges the “fundamental way we’ve structured liberty in our constitutional order.”

Moreover, there is little agreement on which types of genetic material should be run through the device. Valuable genetic evidence is likely to be rendered useless if handled by nonexperts, critics say, and police officers risk being misled by the results of Rapid DNA analysis.

“There are not the same standards and rules and safeguards that are in place for the national database,” said Michael Coble, the associate director of the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification. “Who is going to change that? I don’t know.”

If the Rapid DNA system has flaws, now is the moment to address them, many experts argue. Peter Stout, president of the Houston Forensic Science Center, was left with concerns after completing a Rapid DNA pilot program with the Houston Police Department last February.

“I barely need a pulse to use this instrument,” he said. To illustrate the point, he selected a sample from a 52-year-old who had been pulled over the previous day for running a red light.
To collect DNA, police in Pennsylvania must obtain consent from people under arrest. Ninety percent of those asked say yes, said Fred Harran, director of public safety for the Bensalem police. Asked why so many people would consent to give DNA, he said: “I have no idea. But criminals do stupid things.”


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