DNA DataBank Oversight PanelMinutes of Meeting
March 11, 2014
Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Forensic Laboratory
The meeting convened at 9:37 a.m. Present at the meeting were Angela Przech, Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP)-Forensic Lab; Patricia Johannes, DESPP-Forensic Lab; Dahong Sun, DESPP-Forensic Lab; Matthew Garcia, DESPP; Antoinette Webster, DESPP-Legal; Michael Aiello, Judicial Branch, Court Support Services Division (CSSD); David Maiga, Department of Correction (DOC); Robert Dearington, Office of the Attorney General; and Michael Gailor, Office of the Chief State’s Attorney.
The minutes of the meetings of January 21, 2014, were reviewed and accepted.
On behalf of the laboratory, Ms. Johannes reported that as of February 28, 2014, approximately 101,308 convicted offender samples (the number has not been corrected for duplicates) have been submitted to the lab. Of these samples, 96,420 (up 948 from the last report) have been profiled and reside in CODIS. The backlog of convicted offender samples waiting to be processed has increased by 52 to 658. There are 5,538 profiles in the Forensic Index.
The lab reported that 2364 investigations have been aided so far based on 2304 confirmed hits. Approximately 15 candidate matches are under evaluation.
The lab further reported that there are approximately 1583 cases awaiting testing to be done.
The lab reported that it is conducting an audit of the CODIS database. The audit revealed 570 convicted offender profiles that were searching at the state level but not nationally. Those profiles were marked for uploading and went to NDIS on 2/28/14 and 3/6/14. The upload of the profiles into the national database resulted in four requests to confirm candidate matches. As a result of the audit the lab has identified 371 offender profiles out of the 99,133 submitted that needed further review. To date, they have resolved the issues involved with 352 of those profiles. The lab will attempt to resolve the issues with the remaining 19 profiles.
The Judicial Branch, Court Support Services Division (CSSD) reported that from October 2013 through December 2013, they scheduled 557 appointments to obtain DNA samples and that they were able to collect 465 samples which is a collection rate of approximately 84 percent. They reported 284 profiles were obtained from other sources. CSSD reported that in 276 non-probation cases they needed to obtain samples from 103 individuals, approximately 37%. CSSD sent 22 memos to the Department of Correction asking them to collect samples and submitted 62 new warrants for the refusal to submit to the taking of a DNA sample to the State Police. The Judicial Branch further reported that for the calendar year 2013, they scheduled 2441 appointments and collected samples from 1951 persons, or approximately 80% of those that scheduled appointments. Over the course of 2013, the Judicial Branch collected 1160 samples from other sources.
Matthew Garcia, DESPP, Sex Offender Registry Unit, reported that a person had been assigned specifically to handle warrants for the refusal to submit to the taking of a DNA sample. He noted that his unit did not have a policy for purging samples that might have been taken inappropriately. The committee unanimously agreed that in the event the Sex Offender Registry Unit obtained a sample inappropriately it would be forwarded to the lab where it could be purged in accordance with established guidelines.
David Maiga, on behalf of the Department of Correction, reported that they obtained 367 new samples since the last meeting and 516 in the year to date. The number of inmates who have refused to provide a sample has been reduced to 251.
The Committee went into executive session at 10:48 a.m. At 11:14 a.m. the Committee came out of executive session. As a result of discussion during the executive session, the following actions will be taken:
- Sample 3/11/14-A will be destroyed due to insufficient identification of the person who submitted the sample.
- Sample 3/11/14-B will be held but will not be in the searchable database until a qualifying conviction can be confirmed or denied.
- Sample 3/11/14-C will be purged.
- Sample 3/11/14-D will be purged.
- A hit relating to sample 3/11/14-E will be disclosed.
At 11:14 a.m., the meeting was adjourned. The next meeting of the Oversight Committee was scheduled for June 10, 2014, at 9:30 a.m. at the Forensic Science Laboratory.