ABA Journal


U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court to Decide if Police Can Take DNA from Suspects Arrested for Serious Crimes

Nov 12, 2012, 01:12 pm CST


Obviously, they can, and it should be lawful, just as routine fingerprinting during booking is lawful. The Maryland court must have been stuck in one of those exceptionally thick fogs (usually seen only on Planet Moderator).

By B. McLeod on 2012 11 12, 1:29 pm CST

Are you that thick skulled? No they can't. Have you ever heard of "Innocent until proven guilty"? This is why most states do not allow the collection of DNA from felons until they are convicted. I agree with what the Appeals Court stated and if the Supreme Court has any sense whatsoever, it will uphold the overturning of the conviction.

It's sad that a criminal gets to walk free but blame the stupid officers for not properly doing their jobs! I would rather see a guilty man free than an innocent man in prison - something we have way too much of today. Innocent people are in prison because of prosecutors who are more concerned about their résumé showing a high conviction rate rather than the truth as well as police officers that are overly eager to flex their muscle and thus can't seem to do their job correctly. If there is to be any hope of a justice system worth a damn in this country (which that hope is quickly and drastically fading!), then the police MUST be made to follow the rules like everyone else.

You, like so many others, are quick to disregard the sanctity of the right to privacy until the 'right to privacy' that is violated is your own. Maybe you should have your rights violated, falsely accused and imprisoned for a crime you did not commit. Would you still think the way you do then? I doubt it!

By Ryan on 2012 11 13, 9:31 am CST

Like fingerprints and photographs, DNA is a valuable means of identification. It is actually an important scientific tool to AVOID conviction of the innocent. Of course, people who have committed long strings of crimes where they left DNA samples no doubt feel a major "privacy" interest in policing up their old cigarette butts and foam coffee cups.

I think it should be justifiable as a routine matter at booking, lest the defendant, after release on bond, should attempt to claim in court that the person who was caught red-handed, then arrested and booked, was someone else. No problems here except for criminals.

By B. McLeod on 2012 11 13, 1:28 pm CST

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