Sheriff Rich Stanek of Hennepin County, Minnesota is asking state legislators to empower investigators to use familial DNA, also known as kinship DNA, to narrow the field of suspects in crimes.
His crime lab technicians now submit genetic profiles to CODIS, the national DNA database of convicted felons, in search of identical matches. Stanek would like to see that net widened to include partial DNA matches, which would point to blood relatives of a felon in the database. "I think that when it comes to protecting the safety of the public we should use advances in forensic sciences and technology," Stanek explained, adding that Constitutional safeguards against unreasonable searches would still be provided.
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