Genetic Information and Privacy Interests: The DNA Fingerprinting Act
Engage, Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 64, October 2007
4 Pages Posted: 12 Sep 2011
Date Written: October 1, 2007
The DNA Fingerprinting Act authorizes the collection of DNA from anyone convicted, charged, or arrested for a felony or crime of violence; and from any non-U.S. citizen who is merely detained by a federal agency. It further provides for the DNA samples to be entered into the CODIS system. The involuntary extraction of DNA without a warrant raises privacy concerns, particularly as regards the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. Those concerns are legitimate, but the issue here is more a matter of political will than constitutional constraint. As such, the balance between individual privacy and government interest points to the reasonableness of the collection and use of DNA evidence.
Keywords: DNA, search and seizure, 4th Amendment, sample on arrest, Innocence Project, DNA fingerprinting, CODIS
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