ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A state lawmaker has reintroduced legislation that would allow the use of familial DNA searches to identify criminals with genetic links to relatives. The New York Appellate Court banned those searches last week stating it must be approved by the legislature.
Sen. Phil Boyle said his measure would only be used to solve violent crimes by linking crimes to partial matches. But an appellate court judge said this search type would be discriminatory because the database system is more populated with DNA of people of color. However, the senator said the familial DNA search is fair.
“The DNA Databank the state police keeps only includes people convicted of crimes. It doesn’t go by race, ethnicity, just people convicted of crimes,” he said. “It’s those individuals’ relatives that we could be catching. There may be another person that committed a violent crime who’s gonna be off the street as a result of this legislation.”
The Senator has been working on the legislation on a federal and state level since 1998. It did receive support from the Senate in previous years but not the Assembly. He hopes to get it passed this session.