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Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court

Davis and Hayes (cont.)

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Read together, Hayes and Davis stand for the following propositions:

  • Just as with fingerprint evidence, if there is no probable cause to arrest a person, any DNA evidence obtained as a result of that seizure is unlawful.
  • If police have lawfully detained a person (as in a traffic stop or brief pedestrian stop), it may be legal to take a DNA sample at the scene if it is not done in an unreasonably intrusive manner. It is unresolved as to whether a court order or warrant would be required.
  • In the absence of probable cause or reasonable suspicion, there must be valid consent that was not tainted or polluted by an illegal arrest or detention.

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