What Do You Think? – Connecticut’s New DNA Sampling Law
On October 1st, a new law will go into effect requiring anyone arrested for any of 39 serious felonies to provide a DNA sample prior to their release from custody. Connecticut will be the 25th state to require DNA samples, although the state has been collecting samples from anyone convicted of serious felonies for several years. Additionally, the law states that if the charges are dropped against the person arrested or if the person is found not guilty, their DNA will be purged from all databases. Laws mandating the collection of DNA samples are always controversial, stirring up strong feelings for and against them.
What do you think? The law has been depicted by many as similar to “Katie’s Law,” a New Mexico law named for Katie Seppich who was raped and killed. Katie fought her assailant; however, the blood and skin found under her finger nails did not match any samples at the time. It was not until three years later that New Mexico’s database matched her killer’s DNA. On the other side of the spectrum, some feel that the law will result in an invasion of privacy, primarily the Fourth Amendment, Article 1, Section 7 which protects against unreasonable search and seizure.
Let us know how you feel about the new law and what implications you think it has for future investigations in the state.