-Submitted by David Drumm (Nal), Guest Blogger
And it’s getting more difficult with the introduction of DNA spray. DNA spray is an invisible mist dispensed from devices placed in high crime areas. The mist is harmless and visible under UV light and sticks to clothing and the crevasses of the skin. Even after three-a-day showers, the DNA will remain on an offender for weeks. DNA spray provides a unique signature that, after forensic analysis, can irrefutably place the person at the scene of a crime.
The system is popular in Europe and will be coming to the U.S. soon.
Rotterdam police say that none of the locations that have the spray installed have been burglarized. The sprayers come with warning signs that can be placed in windows. The criminals see the warning signs and move on to unprotected businesses or homes. I wonder if they sell a “starter kit” that contains only the signs.
Analysis of the spray just proves the person was present at the scene of a crime, it doesn’t provide evidence that the person committed the crime. It is easy enough for police to check for UV fluorescence without an invasion of privacy.
But is the presence of UV fluorescence reason enough for police to collect a sample that could then be sent to a lab for the required analysis, or would a judge have to issue a warrant? Innocent bystanders might also be contaminated with the spray and would, hence, fluoresce. The police would have to rely on evidence other than UV fluorescence to justify a warrant.
H/T: ABC, SelectaDNA.