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Forensic DNA Education for Law Enforcement Decisionmakers

Including All Interested Agencies

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Including All Interested Agencies

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National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (see reuse policy).

When drafting DNA legislation, be sure to identify and include key stakeholders in the process. At a minimum, individuals who will collect, analyze and use DNA analysis results should contribute to the drafting of any DNA proposal to ensure the success of the legislation. In addition, candid discussions and critiques of the proposal during the drafting stage will contribute to the strength of the bill.

Including all the interested parties will ensure that any measure passed will be workable in the field. This also begins the very important consensus-building step, which will be critical to smooth passage.

  • Law enforcement agencies collecting samples for DNA analysis can discuss known pitfalls in the collection and chain-of-custody processes.
  • Forensic laboratories performing DNA analysis can outline the financial, staffing and other resources required to comply with the measure.
  • Laboratories can also provide guidance on any conflict between the federal database (CODIS) and any state databases to ensure that DNA profiles developed from samples are immediately uploaded.
  • The prosecutors who use the DNA analysis results are essential to the process, as they will be able to add critical timing factors to the proposal.

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