Government Technology

New York Wants DNA From all Convicts



New York Governor Paterson
New York Governor Paterson

June 7, 2010 By

Reprinted courtesy of Stateline.org

Like most states, New York collects DNA from those convicted of serious criminal offenses. But Governor David Paterson (pictured) wants to dramatically expand the practice to include those convicted of almost all offenses, including misdemeanors.

Paterson announced the proposal at a Manhattan press conference last week, where he was flanked by victims' advocates and representatives from the state's law enforcement community. Supporters of the plan believe it will help solve and prevent crime, as DNA samples collected at crime scenes can be compared with those in the state's offender database, leading to suspects.

Critics of the proposal are uneasy over the privacy implications of the state collecting and saving tens of thousands of DNA samples, and they worry that human error - including in busy crime labs -- could result in innocent people being accused of new crimes, the (Rochester) Democrat and Chronicle reported.

If the rest of the country is any indication, however, concerns over civil liberties in the debate over DNA collection usually are outweighed by the possibility of solving cold cases and preventing new crimes. At least 21 states already go further than New York and collect DNA from certain offenders who are simply arrested for crimes -- rather than convicted of them -- according to DNAresource.com, a site that breaks down state DNA collection laws. Under arrestee sampling laws, those who are not convicted can have their DNA samples destroyed later. In March 2008, as Stateline reported, only 12 states had authorized arrestee DNA sampling, underscoring how quickly such legislation has spread.

At least 15 states, meanwhile, already collect DNA from those who are convicted of certain misdemeanors, rather than just felonies, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.


| More

Comments

Add Your Comment

You are solely responsible for the content of your comments. We reserve the right to remove comments that are considered profane, vulgar, obscene, factually inaccurate, off-topic, or considered a personal attack.

In Our Library

White Papers | Exclusives Reports | Webinar Archives | Best Practices and Case Studies
Cybersecurity in an "All-IP World" Are You Prepared?
In a recent survey conducted by Public CIO, over 125 respondents shared how they protect their environments from cyber threats and the challenges they see in an all-IP world. Read how your cybersecurity strategies and attitudes compare with your peers.
Maintain Your IT Budget with Consistent Compliance Practices
Between the demands of meeting federal IT compliance mandates, increasing cybersecurity threats, and ever-shrinking budgets, it’s not uncommon for routine maintenance tasks to slip among state and local government IT departments. If it’s been months, or even only days, since you have maintained your systems, your agency may not be prepared for a compliance audit—and that could have severe financial consequences. Regardless of your mission, consistent systems keep your data secure, your age
Best Practice Guide for Cloud and As-A-Service Procurements
While technology service options for government continue to evolve, procurement processes and policies have remained firmly rooted in practices that are no longer effective. This guide, built upon the collaborative work of state and local government and industry executives, outlines and explains the changes needed for more flexible and agile procurement processes.
View All

Featured Papers