Griffo: Expanding DNA Database Protects New Yorkers
State Senator Joseph A. Griffo (R-C-IP, Rome) today said that his support for the expanded DNA database legislation that was approved yesterday, will enhance public safety in New York State. The legislation will require that all convicted criminal submit a DNA sample, vastly expanding the database.
“New York State has an obligation to the people we protect and serve to maximize the use of DNA technology to keep our citizens safe,” Griffo said. “The current limits on who must submit a sample mean that far less than 50 percent of New York’s convicted criminals are currently required to have samples in the database. Because criminals don’t specialize, limiting DNA collection to only certain convictions doesn’t make sense. I have been advocating for an expansion of the database as a step to increasing the number of crimes we can solve, and the number of criminals who will be behind bars instead of walking the streets of our cities.”
Griffo said that he is also sensitive to concerns about access to DNA results by citizens who have been wrongfully accused. “The power of DNA evidence lies in the fact that it not only identifies the guilty, but can also exonerate the innocent. Exonerating wrongly convicted individuals is an important consideration, necessary to both instill public confidence in and ensure the integrity of the criminal justice system.”
Governor Cuomo is expected to sign the legislation into law within the next few days.