DNA Database bill signed in ceremony

Friday, August 12th 2005, 6:54 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) A ceremonial bill signing was held for a bill that expands the state's criminal DNA database.

Senate Bill 646 requires individuals convicted of a felony to submit a DNA sample to the state's database. Supporters say the legislation will allow the state to identify people who have committed a wide range of crimes but managed to avoid prosecution.

In 2003, the Oklahoma Criminal Justice Resource Center reported there were more than 5,100 felons convicted of major crimes who would have had to submit DNA samples under the bill.

Oklahoma began requiring offenders convicted of violent or sexual crimes to provide DNA samples in 1996. Officials have identified more than 70 suspects in unsolved crimes through the database.