By J. D. Heyes
The only worse thing about an increasing number of police departments collecting DNA evidence from suspects they arrest – before they’ve ever been actually convicted of any crimes – is that courts are continuing to back this egregious violation of civil liberties. So it was only a matter of time before the practice was expanded, so to speak, to cover all suspects, including children.
While local police haven’t yet embraced this tactic, the federal government appears to be on board with it. Documents recently released by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), in response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF), show that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is considering collecting DNA samples from children 14 and up, and is even considering collecting samples from kids younger than that.
Policy could affect 1 million people every year
The request appears to stem from a Department of Justice regulation requiring allfederal agencies to collect DNA samples from all suspects arrested for federal crimes, including “from non-United States persons who are detained under the authority of the United States,” even if they haven’t been involved in any criminal activity.