March 30, 2012
By Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
I announced an agreement with legislative leaders to make New York the first state in the nation to require collection of DNA samples, a modern-day fingerprint, from anyone convicted of a felony or misdemeanor. The DNA database will help convict the guilty, exonerate the innocent, and give law enforcement the best crime-fighting tool to better protect New Yorkers.
For years, this legislation had been caught in the dysfunction and delay of Albany. For crime victims and their families, the political paralysis has been heartbreaking.
Ann M., a mother from Queens, waited ten years for the man who raped her daughter to be brought to justice. The perpetrator committed a slew of other crimes, but none that required a DNA sample, as would be required under this bill.
Without this law, only 48 percent of offenders convicted of a Penal Law offense were required to provide a DNA sample. Even with its limited information, the DNA databank provided leads in nearly 2,900 convictions.
Thanks to your support and to a new spirit of cooperation in Albany, our state can better protect all New Yorkers.