By P J Klosinski
No charges filed? Charges dismissed? Too bad! Indiana is still entitled to your DNA. Unless you are “acquitted of all felony charges” you may not request to have your DNA taken upon arrest expunged!
The law governing Indiana is the Constitution of the United States and of this state and all statutes of the general assembly of the state in force and not inconsistent with such constitutions.
SB 322 allows Indiana to create a special class of persons known as felony arrestees. The law then determines this special group must be acquitted of all felony charges before DNA taken upon arrest could be requested to be removed from a database accessed by federal, state and local law enforcement. Stripped of your right to privacy your DNA will be taken upon felony arrest but not dependent upon warrant based upon probable cause. You must be declared INNOCENT of all charges before you are given the privilege of requesting the removal of your DNA from the database. Indiana tells you that they can obtain evidence against you without due process based upon probable cause presented to a Court and you are now told you must be tried and acquitted of all felony charges before DNA taken upon arrest, not upon court warrant can be removed from the DNA database.
Think that statement cannot be accurate? Check the exact language of the bill. What do you think this means: a person may request expungement if “the person’s DNA profile has been included in the Indiana DNA data base on the basis of the person’s arrest for one (1) or more felonies, and the person was acquitted of all the felony charges”?
Once entered into the Indiana database: “Access to the Indiana DNA data base is limited to federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies through their servicing forensic DNA laboratories.
Acquittal is defined as: “The legal and formal certification of the innocence of a person who has been charged with a crime. Acquittals, in fact, take place when a jury finds a verdict of not guilty”. Does this not mean you must go to trial and be found not guilty before you can begin the required paperwork for expungement?
You must then submit a written request and specified proof of acquittal and once determined satisfactory, the superintendent shall request expungement of your DNA from the national DNA database.
Indiana lawmakers are required to pass only those laws for which there is authority in the Indiana Constitution how can they declare SB 322 is consistent with the Constitutions they take an Oath to uphold?
Government is limited to those powers which do not violate individual rights. State and federal protections of individual rights demand government must search and seize only upon a warrant issued through due process.
What authority in the Constitutions allows Indiana to demand you be acquitted of all felony charges before you can expunge your DNA? When did not filing charges equal determination of guilt? When did dismissing charges equal determination of guilt? Never charged with anything but government still has your DNA? Does being given the privilege to have your DNA removed only upon acquittal meet the protections of constitutional principles?
A detailed explanation of the confines placed on lawmakers is available in this article. https://lpin.org/bill-of-rights-privacy-vs-legislated-dna-collection/