Skip to comments.Court: Police Can Take DNA Swabs From Arrestees
Posted on 06/03/2013 9:20:09 AM PDT by Biggirl
WASHINGTON (AP) - A sharply divided Supreme Court on Monday said police can routinely take DNA from people they arrest, equating a DNA cheek swab to other common jailhouse procedures like fingerprinting.
(Excerpt) Read more at apnews.myway.com ...
Chief Justice John Roberts
Justice Samuel Alito
Justice Clarence Thomas
Justice Stephen Breyer
Scalia was joined in his dissent by:
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Justice Sonia Sotomayor
Justice Elena Kagan
That breakdown on its own is stunning. I would have expected the opposite.
The most liberal judges will always side with criminals not being identified.
Using that viewpoint you are correct.
However, I am not a criminal and I will not allow my DNA to be taken even if I am arrested. That is my viewpoint. Or, are we once again, to give up a small piece of essential liberty in order to allow the state to supposedly keep us safer from criminals?
Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution
Next: urine and stool samples.
I guess "Secure in their persons" must mean something different to you.
I'm not justifying their decision, only explaining it. Liberals chose to protect irresponsibility.
Now let’s say you have a paranoid government bent on scrutinizing all its subjects. A DNA database would be a great place to start. But you’d have to populate it first. Wouldn’t that be one heck of an incentive to start randomly arresting people on spurious charges that you had no intention of prosecuting?
The majority analogized that taking a DNA sample is no more intrusive than taking a fingerprint or booking photo. As police don’t go around spuriously arresting people to collect fingerprints I don’t know that we have any particular grounds for worry here.
And conservatives vote to install GATTACA.
You have no control over what’s done with this information after they take it. Fingerprints can’t be used to elucidate health information about you or any of your first degree relatives. This can be used to implicate your first degree relatives health decisions. Ie, whether or not they GET health care.
And, unlike fingerprints, DNA is easily and cheaply ‘forged’. All someone needs is a drink cup, eating utensil or cigarette butt of yours. They could even filch your dental floss from your trash bin.
Not to mention all the crime lab fraud in the news over the past few years.
There’s no ‘industrial’ benefit gained from giant databases of fingerprints. Just wait till the cops have financial incentive to sell that DNA information.
I don’t like this. It leads to planting of evidence like hair or dead skin cells. You can’t plant fingerprints.
I was shocked as well. Thomas and Alito went along with it. It’s a sad day when I’m on the side of Sotomayor, Kagan, and Ginsburg. The Constitution means nothing anymore.
Please sit up straight and pay attention:
That infamous liberal, Justice Scalia, wrote a scathing dissent.
Read his thoughts here and come back and tell me this is a good decision.
The problem with DNA databases is that even though the odds of a complete DNA Analysis being wrong is only one in millions, the odds of a DNA database being wrong is only one in the thousands, mainly because many DNA samples in the database are partial.
It's the word of the "witness" that is always the biggest problem.
Zimmerman is a good example. Folks saw Tray bashing Zimmerman's head...but apparently that didn't mean much to blacks....and the media.
“give up a small piece of essential liberty in order to allow the state to supposedly keep us safer from criminals? “
I consider myself a libertarian in some ways, but we all have our quirks and one of mine is not caring too much about privacy. If anyone really wanted to find out stuff about me, I’m confident they could. If it bothers me, I can employ countermeasures, but calling the cops into it to make somebody stop looking at me does not strike me as a small government solution, nor as likely to be effective. I believe that all of us leave our DNA around unavoidably, and all over the place. The technology for identifying DNA segments is getting better and better and cheaper and cheaper, and private parties will quickly find ways to use it (most likely for marketing). The genie is out of the bottle, and anonymity, however valuable it may be, is no longer available. I suppose we could make a point of forbidding government entities from using tracking techniques that can’t be kept out of the hands of private parties, but once private databases exist (such as those maintained by Google, Facebook, or Amazon, augmented by “foolproof” identification security based on the users DNA [No more passwords!]), the government can just turn to them for the information about any of us that they think they need.
Also, the existence of a comprehensive DNA based database could serve other purposes than government overreaches. If we ever did want end unauthorized residence in our territory, it would help if we could determine just who any particular person was. Another plus would be that finding compatible tissue donors would be effortless.
We were sold like cattle with obamacare. Once people accept this, it makes sense that the slave owner should be able to brand their property. Besides, 230+ years ain’t a bad run. Maybe the next republic based on freedom and individual liberty will do better. We will be footnoted as a valiant but failed attempt at self governance.
DNA sampling and typing make fingerprints nearly obsolete.
Besides, can a fingerprint reveal:
I would love to read their dissents and see if there is any regard for the 4th amendment in them at all.
As 'aimhigh' pointed out in #5...they may have had ulterior motives.
Well the lib judges will take your guns by by God nobody is going to swab your mouth. Its kind of bizarre.
Just as I would use my teeth for their primary function to deter a swab of my cheek, I fully intend on using my firearms for their primary function should some toady to a black robed fascist come knocking with demands that I allow confiscation of same.
Kennedy wrote the decision, and was joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Stephen Breyer. Scalia was joined in his dissent by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
I’m fine with DNA upon arrest.
I am not fine with your identifying information being shared nationally.
Your arrest particulars are under the authority of the locale in which the crime or alleged crime was commited.
At the most, your crime is under the authority of a sovereign state .
What happens in Vegas ought to stay in Vegas or rightly under the Sovereign state, in which Vegas was incorporated.
If the crime is a Federal Crime, Then fine.
But, it should be a seperate data base, available only to the feds and the state data base available only to the state.
Right. And once they have your DNA, of course, it could be preserved, even replicated, and introduced into any crime scene they like.
The potential for abuse is staggering.
“And once they have your DNA, of course, it could be preserved, even replicated, and introduced into any crime scene they like.”
Finally, someone who understands only ONE of the potential long term abuse scenarios.
Of course, once this becomes widely known it might serve to simply *invalidate DNA* evidence altogether.
Then, what would become of all that USEFUL for OTHER means DNA information in that DNA database?
I am still amazed that those 3 Liberal hags dissented with Scalia defending the 4th amendment. Simply amazed.
Having a decent handle on basic human nature, I would say that is what will happen. Not 'if' but 'when'.
“Just as I would use my teeth for their primary function to deter a swab of my cheek, ...”
There are many states where they make YOU swab the cheek for them to avoid bite potential. In many states it is a crime to refuse the cheek swab. If you refuse three or four burly guards will restrain you and take the sample forcibly. It happens all the time. On the somewhat bright side, in many states there is a restricton against keeping the sample. For example if you are arrested for a felony they will take a sample and run the DNA fingerprint against any open cases to see if you are wanted/fugative etc. If the search comes back negative they have to destroy the sample. Of course that can be changed with the stroke of a pen.
Yes, because DNA is the only way to identify people who have been arrested.
Of course, in Maryland, as Scalia points out it takes months for the state to process DNA from arrestees. Which basically shoots a giant hole in that justification.
An even bigger problem is that if one regards as the probability that an arbitrary person would considered a "match" with a piece of DNA evidence as 1:1,000,000, then if the police identify a suspect and build a case, and then find that DNA matches, likelihood of the match having occurred by coincidence is very small. If, however, the police start by comparing a DNA sample to those of a million people who have been arrested and find a match, the likelihood of the match having occurred by coincidence is much higher. Even if the DNA didn't come from any of the people whose samples on file, comparing against enough people could easily turn up a match.
Perhaps DNA should handled under copyright laws.
Our morning drive show reported this morning that the Federal DOT was taking DNA swabs and blood at apparent roadblocks in St Clair Co. Alabama.
Pell City Police chief confirmed that off duty County deputies were used by Fed Dot to man the road blocks.
DNA samples were apparently “voluntary”, as one witness said she was offered 60 bucks for blood and saliva while another declined blood but was paid 10 bucks for saliva.
Nothing to see here folks, move along. After all it was “voluntary”
They can get their saliva sample when I “spit my last breath at thee”.
Otherwise, I won’t detail their other sampling options.... but I will allow the insinuation... let’s just say if these LEOs want my DNA sample they can swab their wives’ and their daughters’ tonsils.