DNA Database will protect the innocent

Putting aside your thoughts regarding the creation of a massive government database of intimate details about its citizens, because that already exists, and consider why the police can copy a suspect’s fingerprints when arrested, but not also take a DNA sample. Seems to me, a lot of the falsely accused would have not spent time in jail for crimes they did not commit if the police routinely collected DNA evidence as well.

When someone is arrested for a serious crime, police automatically take a set of fingerprints and no one thinks twice about it.

In close to 20 states — but not Illinois — the cops go a step further: They take a DNA sample from everyone who has been arrested for a serious crime but not yet tried. The FBI recently started to do the same.

That’s a reflection of just how valuable DNA has become as a way to catch the guilty — and exonerate the innocent. Experience shows that such databases stop criminals and solve cases.

[Click to continue reading: Stretching the DNA net — chicagotribune.com]

Federal Bureau of Investigation Chicago Division

I wonder if the resistance to routine collection of DNA evidence is based on cultural prejudice, or religious grounds (knee-jerk reaction to stem cell and the like)? I see no real reason that evidence shouldn’t include DNA, especially since fingerprint data is problematic, and often wrong.

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