National Conference of State Legislatures - State Laws on DNA Data Banks

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Posted February 25, 2010
State Laws on DNA Data Banks
Qualifying Offenses, Others Who Must Provide Sample
February 2010

All 50 states require that convicted sex offenders provide a DNA sample, and states are increasingly expanding these policies to include all felons and some misdemeanor To date, 47 states require that all convicted felons provide a DNA sample to the state’s database.

At least 15 states to date include certain misdemeanors among those who must provide a DNA sample. Some are misdemeanors for which sex offender registration is required; other states specify certain sex offenses or child victim offenses.

By 2009, 21 states, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas Vermont and Virginia, had passed laws authorizing DNA samples of certain arrestees; seven were passed in 2009 including Arkansas and Vermont, among others. Arkansas’s qualifying offenses are murder and sex crime arrests. The Texas law allows post-indictment samples of certain sex offenders. Minnesota’s similarly requires a DNA sample after probable cause determination in a charge of one of many serious felonies. California’s Proposition 69, approved by voters on November 2, 2004, requires DNA samples of adults arrested for or charged with a felony sex offense, murder or voluntary manslaughter, or attempt of these crimes. Starting in 2009, the measure requires arrestee sampling be expanded to arrests for any felony offense. The same measure expanded DNA testing to all convicted felons. Kansas added the requirement that felony or drug sentencing guidelines grid level 1 or 2 crime arrestees provide a DNA sample in its law; and expanded in mid-2008 to all felony arrestees. New Mexico’s law also enacted arrestee samples from specified violent felons.

DNA offender database policy is rapidly changing in states; especially that requiring certain misdemeants and certain arrestees to provide samples.

DNA data bases in all states today are connected to the National DNA Index System, which is run by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for federal and state information sharing.