Indiscriminate police use of private DNA databases makes a mess for innocent people.

I can’t wait to hear how law enforcement tries to clean up this seemingly uncontrolled use of personal genetic material over 1 million customers have sent to familial DNA companies like Ancestry.com.

“Anyone who knows the science understands that there’s a high rate of false positives,” says Erin Murphy, a New York University law professor and the author of Inside the Cell: The Dark Side of Forensic DNA. The searches, after all, look for DNA profiles that are similar to the perpetrator’s but by no means identical, a scattershot approach that yields many fruitless leads, and for limited benefit. In the United Kingdom, a 2014 study found that just 17 percent of familial DNA searches “resulted in the identification of a relative of the true offender.”

Wired

ThinkProgress

Fusion.net

Thanks to @CeliaGivens Here’s her cartoon about this at the DNA Newsletter

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About csidds

Dr. Michael Bowers is a long time forensic consultant in the US and international court systems.
This entry was posted in Civil rights, costs of wrongful convictions, criminal justice, criminal justice reform, CSI and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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