Category Archives: DNA Legislation

Lawmakers seek to block insurance companies from access to DNA tests

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CNS) — More than 26 million Americans have voluntarily submitted their DNA for analysis, but a loophole in federal law could allow some insurance companies to get the genetic information.

New Oregon Law Opens Up Process For Post-conviction DNA Testing

A new law that took effect on Jan. 1 will allow better access to post-conviction DNA testing for people who say they’ve been wrongfully convicted of aggravated murder and other serious crimes.
The new measure amends statutes previously introduced in 2015 that said someone requesting a DNA test would have to show that specific evidence would lead to finding that they were “actually innocent,” in effect having to vouch for their innocence before DNA could even be tested.

Trump Reauthorizes Debbie Smith Act To Eliminate Rape Kit Backlogs Across U.S.

President Donald Trump signed legislation Monday that allocates funding to help states clear the backlog of more than 100,000 rape kits across the country, ending several years of nationwide initiatives to get federal support.

Kaul Pushes For Hearing On Sexual Assault Kit Bill

The bill in question would create a standard procedure for collecting DNA evidence in sexual assault cases in Wisconsin, with the hope being that this could prevent a backlog of sexual assault kits in the future.

EFF Sues DHS to Obtain Information About the Agency’s Use of Rapid DNA Testing on Migrant Families at the Border

San Francisco—The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) sued the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today to obtain information that will shine a light on the agency’s use of Rapid DNA technology on migrant families at the border to verify biological parent-child relationships.

Maloney Hails Passage of Debbie Smith Reauthorization Act

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the House of Representatives passed Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney’s (D-NY) H.R. 777 – Debbie Smith Reauthorization Act of 2019. This bipartisan bill was introduced with Congresswoman Ann Wagner (R-MO) in January.

US taking step to require DNA of asylum-seekers

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is planning to collect DNA samples from asylum-seekers and other migrants detained by immigration officials and will add the information to a massive FBI database used by law enforcement hunting for criminals, a Justice Department official said.

Wisconsin Lawmakers Consider Sexual Assault Victims Bill Of Rights

Wisconsin would adopt a new bill of rights for sexual assault victims under a proposal in the state Legislature.
Under the bill, victims of sexual assault would be guaranteed a number of rights, including the right to choose whether or not to undergo a forensic examination and the right to be notified before any evidence from that examination is destroyed.
The rights would be afforded in addition to those already guaranteed under state law for all crime victims.

Helen’s Law ‘may come too late’, says victim’s mother

A woman whose daughter was murdered three decades ago has said she is running out of time to find out where the body is.

Despite DNA evidence, statute of limitations prevents prosecution of Ohio rape cases

Our exclusive three-month 5 On Your Side Investigation reveals how Ohio fails sexual assault victims. We uncovered dozens of cases that will never be prosecuted, despite compelling DNA evidence, because of Ohio’s current statute of limitations.

DOJ Announces Forensic Genealogy Guidelines At Palm Springs Conference


It’s the largest DNA forensic conference in the world and it’s in our own backyard. The International Symposium on Human Identification is a place where the most respected in the industry can talk about emerging technologies.
The biggest topic on the agenda this year is forensic genealogy. Forensic genealogy is law enforcement going after unsolved crimes by utilizing databases through genealogy sites like Ancestory.com.

In rare move, DuPage indicts DNA profile of unknown person suspected in death of ‘Baby Hope,’ infant found dead near Wheaton

On Aug. 15, 2016, landscapers working along Plamondon Road in an unincorporated area near Wheaton found the dead, full-term newborn in a backpack along the roadside. Since then, the DuPage County sheriff’s office has been investigating to learn the identity of the baby and what happened to her.

Illinois becomes 8th state to lift sex-crime prosecution time limit

SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation Friday that makes Illinois the eighth state to remove time restrictions on prosecuting crimes of sexual violence.
The Democrat signed into law a measure that lifts a 10-year statute of limitations on pressing charges in felony cases of sexual assault and sexual abuse.

Idaho will now test all rape kits. It could lead to more convictions, trust of police

BOISE (Idaho Statesman) — After three years of implementing regulations around the testing and tracking of sexual assault evidence kits, law went into place on Monday that mandates the testing of all kits, with very rare exceptions.

DNA testing companies launch new privacy coalition

Genetic testing companies are forming a new coalition on best practices for handling DNA information and to promote the industry in Washington as lawmakers put more scrutiny on their privacy practices.
Three companies — Ancestry, 23andMe and Helix, which provide DNA testing and analysis — formed the Coalition for Genetic Data Protection, first reported by The Hill.