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DNA - A Prosecutor’s Practice Notebook Inventory

Arrestee DNA

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Photo of an example mug shot of an arrestee
National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (see reuse policy).

Federal legislation provides for the collection of DNA from individuals arrested on enumerated federal felony charges.  (See, 42 U.S.C. 14135a (a) (1)(A).  

Increasingly states are adopting legislation expanding databanks to include DNA from persons arrested for certain offenses.  (See, Tex. Gov't. Code §411.1471 (2006); La. R.S. 15:609 (2006); Va. Code Ann. §19.2-310.2:1 (2006); N.M. Stat. Ann. §29-3-10 (2007); Cal Pen Code §296 2006); Minn. Stat. §299C.105 (2005).  The Minnesota state appellate court has addressed the constitutional objections to such a practice. (See, In the Matter of the Welfare of:  C.T.C., Juvenile, 722 NW 2d 484 (2006) 

Taking DNA from individuals under arrest is similar to the practice of taking fingerprints for identification.  See, Securing DNA Samples to Establish Identity.

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