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Dutch Police Ask 8000+ Citizens To Provide Their DNA

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the just-a-swab-between-the-cheek-and-gums dept.

Crime 374

sciencewatcher writes "In an attempt to solve a rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl, the Dutch police have asked 8080 men to provide their DNA. All these people lived 5 km or less from the crime scene at the time of the murder. This reopened cold case is the first large-scale attempt not to hunt the rapist and killer but to locate his close or distant male relatives. All data gathered will be destroyed after the match with this particular murder. There seems to be great public support for this attempt." Shades of The Blooding.

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I see no problem here. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41250985)

It's clearly for the children.

Re:I see no problem here. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251073)

Yes, asking for the DNA of 8000 men is just fine for protecting one child, but reducing government entitlements to retirees to reduce financial burden on millions of young people is just insanity.

Do you trust your government? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41250987)

That is what this boils down to. There is no "right" answer, but citizens of each country answer the question diferently.

Re:Do you trust your government? (4, Insightful)

steelfood (895457) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251137)

Individuals answer the question differently. What happens if you say no, I wonder?

Re:Do you trust your government? (3, Interesting)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251345)

You can't say "no". They can just take a swab of something you touched.. Everywhere we go, we leave a little something behind.

Re:Do you trust your government? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41252113)

You can say "no", but it won't stop them from violating your basic human rights.

Re:Do you trust your government? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251413)

When they tried this in Toronto a few years back it was accompanied by a lovely threat to publish the name of anyone who didn't cooperate.

Re:Do you trust your government? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251819)

Shit man, I WISH they'd try something like that in Winnipeg. I'd be damn fucking PROUD to be published on a list of "those who didn't cater to the OBVIOUS overstepping of the authorities". I'd be tempted to ask if they wish me to wear a red armband as well to indicate I didn't take part in this.

But in general, I'd ask they put my name front and goddamn center as one of the people who didn't take part.

Re:Do you trust your government? (1)

fche (36607) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251935)

Ditto.

Re:Do you trust your government? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251827)

When they tried this in Toronto a few years back it was accompanied by a lovely threat to publish the name of anyone who didn't cooperate.

Thus indicating who you should reach out to when organizing political (or violent) resistance? Way to think it through, guys.

Re:Do you trust your government? (2)

TheRealGrogan (1660825) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251871)

I would want my name published, as someone who stood up to that inappropriate request. Once they have your DNA on file, you can't trust them to discard that information.

The thing is, if they take it themselves (e.g. break into people's houses and swab a cup) they can't use that anyway. It was not obtained by lawful means. This means any further evidence they gather based on that, is also unlawful. So they don't do things like that. This is why they formally obtain and store DNA records when someone is convicted of a crime.

They haven't got my fingerprints or my DNA. They can swab their lips when they are finished kissing my ass.

Re:Do you trust your government? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251967)

You are right I believe. However the problem is it has been found lawful to extract such evidence from soda cans and other bottles you throw out in a public garbage can. They can also rummage through your trash for such evidence. Unless you plan to burn your garbage which is likely illegal you are screwed.

Re:Do you trust your government? (4, Insightful)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252021)

Any government that would use already tight (name a Gov. that isn't under the monetary gun right now) public funds to blanket over 8000 men in an attempt to find one murderer is not a smart government and not one I would care to support. You people nodding in the affermitive are pound foolish. Then after spending all that money to gather the samples they say the samples will be thrown out. You people are dreaming.

Re:Do you trust your government? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252207)

I've lived in Toronto for 20+ years. I don't recall any such attempt, nor threat.

Let's rephrase that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251191)

Do you trust the organization which is founded on a special "right" to employ physical force against you (or threat thereof) as their means?

Common sense tells me that any person who initiates physical force against me is doing it for his own benefit, rather than mine. That's just plain human nature. What makes government so different? What makes them exempt from the laws of human nature? Certainly a man cannot volunteer to be subject to coercion, any more than he can coerce another man to volunteer. The two modes of human interaction, voluntary association and coercion, are polar opposite and mutually exclusive. That is what gives them meaning.

Re:Do you trust your government? (3, Interesting)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251283)

Somewhere, there has to be a sense of common human rights, and what's extractable by the state-- any state. If there are no matches, then what? Is the DNA destroyed? Or is it part of a new database to vet our ostensible innocence of other crimes?

It's invasive, and therefore beyond the reach of probing with the flimsy "probable cause" of proximity, and the inherent right of people to be innocent until proven guilty. Yes, American ideals, and a boundary that's pushed across the planet.

Re:Do you trust your government? (3, Informative)

arth1 (260657) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251895)

Somewhere, there has to be a sense of common human rights, and what's extractable by the state-- any state. If there are no matches, then what? Is the DNA destroyed? Or is it part of a new database to vet our ostensible innocence of other crimes?

I know that not reading TFA is common enough, but this is answered in the fine submission - yes, it's a one-time effort, and the samples will not be kept.

Re:Do you trust your government? (3)

Anomalyst (742352) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251941)

it's a one-time effort, and the samples will not be kept.

Bullshit. They are lying, you can see their lips moving.

Re:Do you trust your government? (2)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252041)

Sure the DNA is destroyed, but what about the computer generated representation of that DNA? As soon as something is translated from one form to another, saying you'll destroy the submission is meaningless.

Re:Do you trust your government? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41252081)

Why yes there is, or was, or might have been.

There was this idea after some big war in the 1940s, something about all nations uniting. Can't remember what it was called. There was a list of basic human rights created by this fringe group. Some countries approved it but since there was no enforcement allowed it was a joke.

Wonder whatever happened to that?

Re:Do you trust your government? (2)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251319)

I just googled "dutch mps" and most of the stories seemed to be the sort of thing I'd want my politicians to be doing.

Promise? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41250989)

"We'll destroy the DNA afterwards, we PROMISE...."

Re:Promise? (4, Insightful)

guises (2423402) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251081)

At least they did promise. When law enforcement here does the same thing and cites this case as precedent they'll neglect to consider that little condition.

Re:Promise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251389)

Not so. Historically in the US, the claimed they would destroy the information. In spite of multiples disclosures proviing they have refused to destroy the DNA samples, they insist they have.

These days, because they've been repeatedly caught lying and have refused to destroy DNA samples, even though illegally obtained, they now go out of their way to not address the issue unless its forced.

Re:Promise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251893)

How is this insightful? What the Dutch do doesn't set precedent for the US.

Re:Promise? (1)

guises (2423402) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252033)

Nonsense, we don't live in a vacuum. If this works, law enforcement here will say "Hey look at this, it worked in the Netherlands. We should try it."

You were perhaps thinking of the lawyer phrase "legal precedent," which is a separate issue and also not entirely true in practice: in some cases, particularly unusual cases or cases that have some element of internationality, lawyers and judges will sometimes look to how a similar case was prosecuted in another country.

Re:Promise? (1)

Eponymous Hero (2090636) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252147)

i think we're talking about legal precedents. so no, it won't apply to the us.

Re:Promise? (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252083)

If "here" is the US, it's already a common practice [newstandardnews.net] . And yes, if you refuse you can expect your name to be published [nytimes.com] in the paper.

IMO, this is an obvious breach of our 4th amendment protections against unreasonable searches, and our 5th amendment protections against self incrimination.

Re:Promise? (5, Interesting)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251093)

Yeah, we've seen and heard similar promises from both government and private entities before.

"These automated license plate scanners won't store the data." "Okay this data may be useful to us, so we'll save it but not for more than three months." "Hey we've got all this great license plate data, organized by place and time - what will you pay for such useful information?"

"We're not collecting Wi-Fi data." "Okay, yeah we are collecting it but we're not going to store the Wi-Fi payload info." "Okay, we did, you caught us, it was accidentally done, but we won't do it again." "Okay we didn't actually dump it the last time after we said we would, but we ARE now... promise!"

If I were Dutch, I think I'd decline to participate.

Re:Promise? (4, Insightful)

fearlezz (594718) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251461)

In fact, in another Dutch case, the very same promise was made... and broken. The guys who fell for it are now stored in the central DNA database. Forever.

If only I remembered what case that was, I would post a link.

Re:Promise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251369)

If they don't and it comes out (and it does given the number of people involved) it means a lot of cops involved lose their jobs.

Re:Promise? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251877)

You are just too precious.

Re:Promise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41252217)

That is what I was thinking, I would have no problem with providing my DNA for such a one off fishing expedition, but knowing full well that it will be kept indefinetly will cause me to never volunteer. There are too many stories coming now where people are wrongfully convicted because their DNA was in the wrong place at the wrong time... the last thing I want is my DNA being checked for every random crime. Eventually there's a reasonable chance my DNA could have ended up there from a skin flake or something, then you get the knock at the door... no thanks.

I'd do it. (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251033)

I don't generally like the idea of giving DNA samples to anyone. However, if the authorities are very direct and up-front about it, and provide me with a signed statement that the records will be destroyed after each sample is "cleared", then I'd do it in this case.

I'll always trust the entity who asks for something over the entity which does the same thing in secret without permission.

Even so, I sincerely doubt that this will lead to the perpetrator, for obvious reasons.

Re:I'd do it. (2)

rvw (755107) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251201)

I don't generally like the idea of giving DNA samples to anyone. However, if the authorities are very direct and up-front about it, and provide me with a signed statement that the records will be destroyed after each sample is "cleared", then I'd do it in this case.

I'll always trust the entity who asks for something over the entity which does the same thing in secret without permission.

Even so, I sincerely doubt that this will lead to the perpetrator, for obvious reasons.

If I were the killer, I would certainly not give my DNA. They probably expect this. Those who refuse will of course receive special attention. Then the DNA might rule out those who are suspects now, and have a different profile. What they hope for is a match for family. They can see if the person is a blood relative, and that will limit the scope of the search.

Re:I'd do it. (5, Insightful)

leromarinvit (1462031) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251615)

If I were the killer, I would certainly not give my DNA. They probably expect this. Those who refuse will of course receive special attention.

Well, I've never killed anyone and don't plan to, but I most certainly wouldn't give anyone my DNA unless forced to. If they want to force me, they have to treat me as a suspect, I have a right to legal counsel, etc. Why should I trust the police that they'll destroy everything afterwards? Wouldn't be the first time they lied.

They have to do their homework, find suspects, and then get THEM to provide a DNA sample. Taking shortcuts and asking everybody to provide one "voluntarily" is not acceptable, because at some point it won't be voluntary any more. The fact that the proper procedures take a lot of work is an insurance policy against just treating everybody as a suspect just in case.

Re:I'd do it. (3, Informative)

rve (4436) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251385)

Even so, I sincerely doubt that this will lead to the perpetrator, for obvious reasons.

They're not doing this assuming the killer will volunteer; they're looking for his relatives - something that was apparently not possible 20 years ago, when they also did a DNA screening. Everyone has a creepy cousin somewhere, right? Most guys will probably volunteer. Everyone in that town wants the crime to be finally solved.

Re:I'd do it. (5, Insightful)

cbreak (1575875) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251873)

If they would really look for relatives, then they would not limit themselves to male DNA sources. It should be obvious to anyone that a rapist can have female relatives just as well as male ones.

Re:I'd do it. (1)

misexistentialist (1537887) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251945)

It's ungentlemanly to ask a woman for her DNA.

Re:I'd do it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41252141)

Then get a lady cop to ask, nobody expects a lady to be gentlemanly.

Re:I'd do it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251465)

I'll always trust the entity who asks for something over the entity which does the same thing in secret without permission.

I'd trust neither.

Re:I'd do it. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251479)

I might do it for $500 flat fee and a $2,000,000 deposit returnable only on proof of complete erasure.

Hello, $2,000,500!

Re:I'd do it. (1)

Znork (31774) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251493)

Except, of course, the entity may very well be direct and up-front, provide you with a signed statement and then store your sample in secret without your permission anyway.

Once you've provided them with the sample you have no control over what they do with it in secret. ... and having read about some real quality DNA labs the chances are they'll put your sample in the same testtube they ran the suspect sample in without washing it between. Or the same lab tech sneezed at both the suspect sample and yours. Weird how your sample matched, huh?

Re:I'd do it. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251701)

Why not invert the problem. Publish the DNA the police have and people can check against their own.

FTFY

Re:I'd do it. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251865)

A signed statement isn't enough. They have to assume responsibility and agree to repercussions, e.g. "if we don't destroy it as promised we give you a million dollars".

Otherwise your signed statement is worthless.

Re:I'd do it. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251985)

Even so, I sincerely doubt that this will lead to the perpetrator, for obvious reasons.

Probably the criminal himself isn't going to provide a sample, but what are the odds that he doesn't have family members in the area who will give a sample? If he's not an adopted loner, then there will probably be a family match against his nephew, brother or uncle.

Well, okay (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251041)

...but only if it was a legitimate rape and murder.

Legitimate == forcible (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251167)

As I understand it, the phrase "legitimate rape" was intended to refer to forcible sexual assault, as opposed to making a rape claim on the basis of having retroactively withdrawn consent for a previous sexual contact. Sure, a rape-and-murder like this is obviously forcible, but for claims of rape without murder or other bodily harm, what's the best way to distinguish forcible rape from "oh wait, that wasn't really consent"?

Re:Legitimate == forcible (0, Flamebait)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251311)

If she gets pregnant or not?

Re:Legitimate == forcible (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251339)

Consent can't be retroactively withdrawn, and physical force isn't necessary for sex to be nonconsensual.

Re:Legitimate == forcible (1)

Antipater (2053064) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251505)

That's one way to interpret it. Another is "If you got pregnant, you gave consent."

Re:Legitimate == forcible (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251699)

Aww, I've had a vasectomy.

RAPE RAPE RAPE
[picture of lincoln]

"think of the children" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251059)

I can only see this as a slippery slope.

Thus... (4, Insightful)

halfEvilTech (1171369) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251077)

why not 6km away, 10km, etc? That is not that large of an area all things considered. It would be roughly the size of a small town. Who is to say the perp didn't live the next town over or was a nomad of sorts. Yes I know they say it is to possibly locate relatives, but how often would close enough match cause them to accuse said match.

Also who would trust their government to "destroy" the data when they are done with it. Yes they may very well destroy the samples but you can bet your next paycheck that it will stay stored on some backup somewhere for future use.

Re:Thus... (1, Informative)

fearlezz (594718) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251557)

Why not 6km/10km? I'm not sure, but I guess it's because the village where she was found is only 500meters long and surrounded by meadows. 5km radius = 10km diameter. This means all nearby villages are included as well.
Any further is a lot less likely: most crimes are commited within a certain distance of the criminals home. Because the infrastructure at the site doesn't allow to travel very fast, this distance decreases I think.

The Marianne Vaatstra case will probably never be solved. There was a lot of evidence pointing towards a center of asylum seekers nearby. The most likely suspects fled the country within a few days.

Re:Thus... (4, Informative)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252071)

The Marianne Vaatstra case will probably never be solved. There was a lot of evidence pointing towards a center of asylum seekers nearby. The most likely suspects fled the country within a few days.

And later evidence pointed to it likely being a local (second bike), possibly somebody she knew (likely perp's lighter in her bag), and most likely western European (from DNA); not quite the Iraqi/Afghani asylum seeker profile.

At this point it could be her neighbor, somebody from Amsterdam, or even an American with Western European heritage. No use pointing fingers anywhere.

I do agree that this likely will never be solved, though. This and dozens of other cases that don't get nearly this much (media) attention.

Re:Thus... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251597)

Why only men? I did not read that the the DNA they had was identified as male. Could there not be a female accomplice?

The old 6502 vs. Z80 war again? (4, Funny)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251105)

Fortunately, I'm a 6502 man [wikipedia.org] , not an 8080 man [wikipedia.org] . (But then I'm not Dutch either.)

Re:The old 6502 vs. Z80 war again? (4, Funny)

Solandri (704621) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251391)

All men claim to be big endian, even if they're little endian.

Re:The old 6502 vs. Z80 war again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251419)

Z80 = Zilog 80, not Intel 8080 (even if it was developped to be binary compatible with it)

This is how you do it, right? (2)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251123)

Convince people they are being attacked, and they'll give you anything you want. Happens every day. Textbook case, ripped right out of that book written by the little general.

Why do they want Romey's taxes (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251147)

Why do they want Romey's taxes but refused Obama's birth certificate? Why was Roney a governor for free and Obama has many paid vacations. Why do former Presidents spend more money on stamps than most make in a year. I have to take a drug test to work, welfares dont..... I have to show my ID to vote and do many other things but illegals dont.

data will be destroyed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251163)

All data gathered will be destroyed after the match with this particular murder.

LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

bullshit.

Bad move (5, Insightful)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251203)

This is a good article on the problems with fishing expeditions like this. [wordpress.com] Basically, the farther you cast the net, the greater the chance of false positives. What's worse, if there's just one false positive, it becomes next to impossible to argue your innocence because people look at the improbability of a single person being a false positive instead of the probability that there are false positives.

One of them will probably match! (4, Insightful)

bradley13 (1118935) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251209)

DNA screening only looks at a few characteristics. Take two random people, and there is about a 1-in-7000 chance that their DNA profiles will match. If you take the DNA profiles of 8000 people, it is quite likely that one of them will match the criminals profile. Meanwhile, the criminal will almost certainly find some way to avoid giving a sample. So you get to put some innocent person through hell, and for what?

Re:One of them will probably match! (1)

kwark (512736) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251467)

They are not looking for a match with the criminal, they are looking for any one matching. They might find family narrowing the search for the real criminal.

Re:One of them will probably match! (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251915)

Take two random people, and there is about a 1-in-7000 chance that their DNA profiles will match

True, but keep in mind that this may as well translate to:
"Take an octogenarian paraplegic-at-birth blind man in care home and a 30-year old guy who has no alibi and is known to be a womanizer who likes getting rough, and there is about a 1-in-7000 chance that their DNA profiles will match

I doubt it would be that clear-cut, but investigations don't generally go "your DNA matches, we don't care you claim where you were at the time, or who can place you there, or what condition you are in - you are found guilty regardless and are hereby sentenced to life in prison" as much as I enjoy that doom scenario often proposed :)

P.S. They're not even looking for the perp, but for family members of the perp. I guess if the perp is actually in the sampling group that'd be rather convenient, though.

Re:One of them will probably match! (2)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252089)

Lets not forget a recent case in the states that got some press becuase a cab driver left some dna on a patron who was later murdered. The cabbie was of course jailed, and for quite some time, until the actual perp was caught.

NSFW (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251213)

>> Dutch police have asked 8080 men to provide their DNA

Are the police two blondes in very short uniforms? I've seen that video, and it needs to be marked NSFW.

yeah right... (2)

axehind (518047) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251233)

"All data gathered will be destroyed after the match with this particular murder." Governments are notorious for not destroying the data they are suppose to destroy like this. The only way I would believe it is
1) there was a law of some sorts that forces them to
2) a penalty if they dont.
3) a law that it cant ever be used against you except for this specific crime

Nothing new.. (1)

leathered (780018) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251247)

Colin Pitchfork [wikipedia.org] was the first person ever to be convicted on DNA evidence. That was as a result of voluntary mass-screening and suppose it's natural for the Dutch police to follow suit especially if they have no leads.

Re:Nothing new.. (1)

Whorhay (1319089) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251655)

He was actually only caught because he paid someone else to submit a sample in his place, and that person then bragged about it. That case also happened pretty early on in the whole DNA as evidence era. Now a days I would expect a criminal to be much more cautious about the whole thing. Then again we are talking about criminals, and they aren't often known for their high intellect.

Are you kidding me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251261)

I wouldn't provide my DNA for any reason, period. Government have proven that they can't be trusted to do what they say. There is no reason to believe that they will change now or ever.

If the Dutch people want it, fine for them. (4, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251271)

But this is the very definition of a "fishing expedition", which is against some of the most very basic legal principles and Constitutional rights of the American people.

Scientists know -- and have been saying -- that DNA is far weaker evidence than prosecutors have tried to paint for the last few decades. But really more to the point: even if a conviction were made, it is not worth the loss of freedom and potential abuse this procedure involves.

"That it is better 100 guilty Persons should escape than that one innocent Person should suffer, is a Maxim that has been long and generally approved." -- Benjamin Franklin, letter to Benjamin Vaughan, March 14, 1785.

Old Ben Franky was naughty (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251719)

I always heard old Ben Franky was naughty. I didn't know he read Maxim way back when.

loss of freedom how? (-1)

wijnands (874114) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251735)

Being asked to supply a sample is a loss of freedom how? American legal rights... like shooting each other, suing each other silly. Enjoying a legal system where the law is whatever you pay a politican to make it?

Re:loss of freedom how? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251939)

Being asked to supply a sample is a loss of freedom how?

Fourth amendment, protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.

Although if you're asked and not required to provide a sample, I suppose it's not technically a violation.

Oh, and the shooting and suing part. That's just for fun.

Re:loss of freedom how? (2)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252155)

Being asked to supply a sample is a loss of freedom how? American legal rights... like shooting each other, suing each other silly.

Um, no. This in America is unreasonable search and seizure, and people have a presumption of innocence.

In Canada there's a reasonable expectation we don't get searched for no good reason, and that comes from British common law.

This is intended to keep the government a little further away and not be able to crap all over you.

Do you really believe that this wouldn't be infringing on your rights for the police to make you submit a DNA sample to prove you didn't commit a crime? Governments tend to collect for one purpose, and then retain indefinitely and use for any other purpose they see fit.

Unless you have evidence to suggest I did this, I'm sure as hell not going to voluntarily submit to this kind of testing without being compelled. And, quite frankly, "because we've ran out of places to look" isn't going to be a good enough reason and will get you told to piss off.

So maybe you think it wouldn't violate your rights to have your DNA on file just because they ran out of places to look. But I wouldn't give it to them voluntarily.

O wait! (2)

Sparticus789 (2625955) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251297)

First, announcing this pretty much ensures the guilty party is never found. It would be like going on Twitter and saying "Hey Mr./Mrs. (Name of criminal), the police are going to #raid your house tomorrow."

Second, you only THOUGHT you had the right to privacy.

Re:O wait! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251639)

Not really. They're presumably looking for near matches that would identify close blood relatives of the perpetrator. Since it is likely that some, if not all, of these people are unaware of their relatives actions, there is a fair chance that the guilty party will be identified and located before long.

Re:O wait! (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251707)

First, announcing this

as opposed to.. what? Surreptitiously acquiring the DNA sample from people?

It would be like going on Twitter and saying "Hey Mr./Mrs. (Name of criminal), the police are going to #raid your house tomorrow."

But they're not even trying to find the criminal's DNA in this case - they already tried that, and didn't find a match. They're trying to find family members now.
I guess if everybody in the family knows that family member X did something, and then every member in the family asked declines to offer the DNA, they'd still be stuck with a problem. Even though it might make the family slightly more suspicious, they may very well all share the thought that the police has no business taking their DNA and maybe, potentially, solving the murder is not worth the intrusion, rather than trying to protect a family member.

Second, you only THOUGHT you had the right to privacy.

They're only being asked to volunteer and no data is made available of who has volunteered and who hasn't - and those that haven't aren't automatically asked over to the police station for a 'friendly chat'. The people still have every right to say 'no' to the DNA swabbing.
Wake me when they force people to comply, or start floating around the DNA registration at birth/entry into the country thing.

Re:O wait! (2)

Whorhay (1319089) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251783)

Even the summary stated they don't think they'll find the perpetrator directly through this sampling. Instead they hope to find a relative who's DNA would be a close match or possibly share some semi unique trait. This could help them immensely by narrowing down the pool of suspects.

My impression was that this is strictly voluntary, so it's not exactly a violation of an individual citizens privacy. It will no doubt though cause lots of concern over whether or not the authorities will do as promised when it comes to destroying the samples that aren't needed. and it could possibly cause some civil rights issues if people that decline to be tested face negative consequences from their fellow citizens for not participating.

The Dutch weren't first (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251439)

Indeed, the Americans beat the Dutch to it -- we need only look back a few years at the Christa Worthington murder at Cape Cod, MA (which some of you may not consider part of the USA) where the whole population of Truro was subject to DNA testing.

They are asking just men? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251445)

This reopened cold case is the first large-scale attempt not to hunt the rapist and killer but to locate his close or distant male relatives.

If they just want to find close or distant relatives of the rapist, why not ask women to do so? 23andMe does a spit test, so it's not like you need to ask for semen. Or are they looking for something in particular on the Y-chromosome?

False positives == "no way" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251511)

The only way I can ensure I'm not falsely accused because of the non-zero possibility of a false match due to error or due to coincidence (it *is* statistically possible for the markers that are typically used) is to ensure that I don't have a sample in the pool being considered in the first place.

I sympathize with the desire to solve the crime, but this is an error-prone way to do things.

How about a reverse test you can do at home? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251559)

If the purpose is "to locate his close or distant male relatives" just create a take-home "red light/yellow light/green light" does-it-match kit and invite those who score "yellow or red" to call the police.

There, now only my wife will know I'm as red as red can be. Darn, one more body to get rid of....

Not compulsory. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251623)

Of course several men will decline these tests.

captcha: gardened

Why only men? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251643)

If you're checking for close relatives, testing women is just as valid and will give you a larger set of samples.

Only Via One Method (1)

organgtool (966989) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251685)

The crime described in this story is truly horrific, bu as a supporter of personal rights I would only submit such evidence in one form and it would involve me standing up, the officers on their knees, and would require at least four tissues to wipe away the excess.

So... (2)

Mister Whirly (964219) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251839)

So the moral of the story is - if you are going to kill someone in the Netherlands, kill someone at least 10 km away from you.

No forced compliance (1)

phorm (591458) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251843)

No-one will be forced to comply, the department said.

So if the actual perp were one of the men asked to provide evidence, then he need only say no, and meanwhile 8000 others have to submit to DNA testing.

Vegas Odds the Data will actually be Destroyed?? (0)

RobertLTux (260313) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251845)

Im sorry but you will have to qualify for our Platinum Club to even see those odds (aka the Whales Club).

Why only males? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41251853)

If they are truly using this to find relatives of the killer and not the killer himself, why are they only asking for DNA of males in the area? Admittedly I know nothing about tracing relatives through DNA samples so maybe there's a logical reason.

Bullshit ... (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251875)

I read this "All data gathered will be destroyed after the match with this particular murder" and immediately think bullshit.

As a rule, once they have this, it never seem to go away.

I would never submit to this unless I was required to -- this is a fishing expedition. Anybody who submits is probably innocent, and anybody who refuses is going to be treated as if they're guilty with something to hide.

Yes, this is terrible. But asking everyone to submit exclusionary DNA because they've ran out of places to look ... well, I find that to be a really scary precedent.

The next step of course would be to just simply have everyone's DNA on file just in case they ever needed it.

Re:Bullshit ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41252149)

The next step of course would be to just simply have everyone's DNA on file just in case they ever needed it.

Which is the rationale behind storing a massive database of the DNA of convicted criminals. This gets you pretty good coverage quickly - a large number of people and the vast majority of criminals have relatives who are criminals.

Put their money when their mouth is! (1)

gurps_npc (621217) | more than 2 years ago | (#41251899)

That is if they just give me their word they would destroy it, I would say no.

Too many laws are written without stated punishments, which means that the government breaks the law without any consequences.

If they explicitly stated that if they failed to destroy my DNA records within 3 months, they would pay me me cash, I would do it. Probably for a minimum payment of $1,000 dollars.

Oh, suuure (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252049)

Sure, the cops will throw your DNA away. After you've been framed for the next crime they're too stupid to actually solve.

Bonus: refusing no doubt will put you on a permanent 'Persons of Interest' list.

What if the criminal moved? (1)

acoustix (123925) | more than 2 years ago | (#41252201)

So now that the police have openly asked for this the criminal would have to be brain dead stupid to stick around.

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