May 18, 2010 5:26PM

Collecting Your DNA—Not Controversial

That’s why the House of Representatives has put “Katie’s Law” (H.R. 4614, the Katie Sepich Enhanced DNA Collection Act of 2010) on the “Suspension Calendar” today. That’s the procedure for considering non‐​controversial bills, giving them about 20 minutes of debate.

The bill would promote collection of DNA samples from people based simply on their arrest for certain crimes. Needless to say, being arrested is nothing close to conviction of a crime, at which time it might be fair to collect a person’s DNA for use as a powerful identifier in later criminal investigations. And if DNA evidence is relevant, let it be collected and used according to existing procedures.

But getting your DNA put in a database just because an investigator got you in his or her sights? It’s the reverse of “innocent until proven guilty.”