Wednesday, February 10, 2010

California Supreme Court says DNA Arrest Warrant OK 

The California Supreme Court ruled that an arrest warrant identifying a perpetrator solely by a DNA profile was valid under the state and federal constitution. The Fourth Amendment (and state equivalents) requires "particularity" when identifying someone. When an perpetrator's name is unknown, a fictitious name ("John Doe") can be used along with other physical characteristics. In this case, the Court ruled that a DNA profile by itself was legally sufficient. Additionally, it was valid under the Sixth Amendment's notice requirements. For the first time on this issue, a substantial dissent was filed, in which the dissent claimed the warrant was insufficient because it could not be effectuated - the police could not make an arrest with a DNA profile only. See 10 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 1009. From Scott Akehurst-Moore.

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