Tags: Maryland v. King

Can the Cops Collect Your DNA? The Supreme Court is About to Decide…

There have been many interesting cases before the Supreme Court as of late, and the most recent one relates to whether or not police have the right to collect someone’s DNA upon arrest.  Justice Samuel Alito has called the case “perhaps the most important criminal procedure case that this court has heard in decades.”  Given the Obama Administration’s complete contempt for civil liberties and The Constitution, they are siding with the state of Maryland in the case.  I am strongly opposed to the collection of DNA upon arrest for various reasons, but the primary one being that when you are arrested you are still presumed innocent.  I do not think an arrest (which could be wrongful) should allow the state to collect your genetic information.  From Bloomberg:

The U.S. Supreme Court, hearing what one justice said might be the biggest criminal procedure case in decades, considered overturning as many as 29 state and federal laws that allow the collection of DNA samples when a person is arrested.

In an hour-long argument full of rapid-fire questions, the justices debated whether the constitutional ban on unreasonable searches requires officials to wait until a person is convicted.

The ruling in the Maryland case will be the court’s first on the privacy of genetic information and may have implications for other cutting-edge police techniques in the future.

Several justices, including Stephen Breyer and Antonin Scalia, suggested they may cross the ideological lines that often divide the court. Scalia signaled his skepticism toward Maryland’s collection program immediately, scoffing when the state’s lawyer opened her argument by touting the 225 matches and 42 convictions the state had secured.

“I’ll bet you if you conducted a lot of unreasonable searches and seizures, you’d get more convictions, too,” Scalia said. “That proves absolutely nothing.”

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