DNA and sampling
February 7, 2003 2:39 PM   Subscribe

I just discovered the answer to a question I asked here. Apparently, the police can get a DNA sample from a suspect without the suspect's knowledge or consent. The police probably had a warrant, but the article doesn't say.
posted by titboy (7 comments total)
Yeah I have heard of the cops doing that before, they will make an appt. "just to talk" to the suspect, then when they arent looking, they will take a strand of hair that fell off their head.. or get in the garbage later for a coffee cup they threw away. sneaky.
posted by glitterbug at 2:47 PM on February 7, 2003

Yo titboy, where the fuck you been? The police can and do do whatever the fuck they want! They're all part of the gang in charge... if the laws don't fit, they'll change the laws to fit their cause.

Get that tit outa your mouth, take a look around, and wake the fuck up!
posted by LowDog at 2:54 PM on February 7, 2003

Police put him under surveillance and seized a discarded cigarette butt to get a DNA sample. It and other samples obtained by warrant were compared to the semen found on the victims. The matches were perfect. -from the article.

The wording is ambiguous, but it seems they had a warrant.
Gattaca anyone?

On preview: somebody get lowdog a tin foil hat, yo?
posted by elwoodwiles at 3:03 PM on February 7, 2003

dude, don't you watch law & order? lenny pulls that shit all the time
posted by badzen at 3:41 PM on February 7, 2003

Elwood: Sounds to me like they grabbed themselves a sample - without the warrant - found that it matched, and then got a warrant so they could legally obtain a sample. If that's the case, I'd have thought the defence lawyer could have argued the original sample was inadmissable, in which case the later sampled would also have to be ruled out. If that's what happened, anyway.
posted by kaemaril at 5:42 PM on February 7, 2003

An officer doesn't have to get a warrant for discarded items- they're considered trash, and therefore, fair game. More often than not, they make these meetings in public places so there's no question of an expectation of privacy, whenever possible.

There was a link here on MeFi a bit back- I can't seem to find it- wherein a police officer's trash was collected and used as evidence against her, so a few local reporters took it upon themselves to collect the trash of the police chief, the mayor, and someone else that dealt with the same issue and has the legalese in the article. Sorry I'm such a strikeout with the search engine.
posted by headspace at 7:53 PM on February 7, 2003

headspace : I believe that was this thread
posted by kaemaril at 8:26 PM on February 7, 2003

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