NYPD’s DNA database raises legal questions

AmNews Staff Reports | 4/16/2019, 9:02 a.m.
The Legal Aid Society says it is too easy for the NYPD to collect and save your DNA.
DNA/genetic material Pixabay

The NYPD’s controversial DNA collection is being hit with legal challenges, according to reports.

The Legal Aid Society and the City Council say that the police department is illegally collecting DNA of citizens, especially from Black and Latino people. DNA is often collected when people have not been convicted of a crime and is often hard to remove from the database

In one reported incident caught on camera in 2017, a Black man was brought into a Bronx precinct where an officer offered him a cigarette. When the Black man left, the officer is seen taking the DNA left on the cigarette.

DNA from 360 Black men was reportedly taken for the case involving the murder of Karina Vetrano.

The NYPD responded in a published statement, “There are standard protocols that govern the collection of DNA, and the NYPD complies with legal requirements surrounding the collection of DNA samples.”

The Legal Aid Society wants to see the City Council hold a hearing on the issue.