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DNA - A Prosecutor’s Practice Notebook Inventory


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Criminal procedure and evidence issues often arise when DNA is collected during a criminal investigation. DNA reference samples may link an individual to a crime or eliminate them from the investigation entirely. Since the means by which law enforcement obtain these samples involves government action, the 4th Amendment of the Constitution is triggered.

Prosecutors should look to their individual state laws for guidance regarding controlling legal principles. Law enforcement typically may obtain DNA samples from individuals suspected of committing a crime in several ways. In this topic you will learn about admissibility, to include:

  • Court orders (search warrants)
  • Consent
  • Current and future DNA comparisons
  • Abandoned sample
  • Statutory DNA collection laws
  • Frye and Daubert tests

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