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Principles of Forensic DNA for Officers of the Court

DNA Dragnets

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The use of a dragnet, or temporary seizure of a large number of individuals, to gather DNA evidence is forbidden. The law requires individualized suspicion before a person may be detained and individualized probable cause before an individual may be arrested.

However, there is no constitutional prohibition on requesting DNA samples from large numbers of people who are not detained or arrested, provided the consent is obtained voluntarily.

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