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Forensic DNA Evidence: National Commission Explores its Future

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 1999
8 pages
The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) established the National Commission on the Future of DNA Evidence in 1998 at the request of Attorney General Janet Reno to determine the future of DNA evidence and how the Department of Justice could encourage its most effective use.
The Commission is examining postconviction issues such as the use of DNA to exonerate wrongfully convicted defendants, crime scene investigation and evidence collection, laboratory funding, legal concerns, and research and development. The Commission's mandate is to submit recommendations to the Attorney General to help ensure more effective use of DNA in addressing crime and to promote its use throughout the criminal justice system. Working groups may develop guidelines for the use of DNA and may submit their products to the full Commission for approval, amendment, or further discussion. The Commission hopes that the examination of the multiple issues raised by the use of forensic CNA evidence will promote better application of DNA technology, expedite its use in crime control efforts, and build public trust in the criminal justice system that uses this technology by ensuring that the guilty are convicted, the innocent are exonerated, and crime is prevented. Photographs

Date Published: January 1, 1999