DOJ wants DNA collection expanded
New proposal would increase sampling by 56,000
MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Department of Justice wants to cast a wider net for collecting DNA samples.
Current state law requires DNA collection from anyone convicted of a felony. The DOJ wants to expand that to anyone arrested for a felony and all adults convicted of misdemeanors.
While about 12,000 samples are currently collected each year, the proposal would push that number to around 68,000. Justice officials say the proposed expansion would help solve more cases and quickly get criminals off the streets.
American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin chief Chris Ahmuty tells the State Journal the expansion “turns the presumption of innocence on its head.” Ahmuty says if no charges are filed or there’s an acquittal, it raises concerns about how the DNA sample could be used in the future.