DNA-collection bills to be introduced in 2017 Legislature

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The Indiana Lawyer on November 8, 2016 by Marilyn Odendahl

After introducing DNA-collection legislation that failed to even get a committee hearing in the two previous General Assembly sessions, Rep. B. Patrick Bauer will be getting boost in the upcoming session from a Republican Senator offering a companion bill in the upper chamber.

Bauer has announced he again will author a bill that requires DNA samples be taken from all suspects arrested for felonies. Also, Sen. Jim Merritt plans to author a similar measure in the Indiana Senate.

The South Bend Democrat has authored the same bill in the two previous sessions of the Indiana General Assembly, mandating law enforcement collect genetic material using a buccal swab from felony arrestees. Rep. Gregory Steuerwald, R-Avon, co-authored both bills. Although neither bill got through the House Committee on Courts and Criminal Code, Bauer is optimistic his legislation will gain the needed support for passage in 2017.