Legislature(2003 - 2004)

02/28/2003 01:05 PM House JUD

Audio Topic
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HB 49 - EXPAND DNA DATABASE                                                                                                   
Number 1836                                                                                                                     
CHAIR McGUIRE  announced that  the final  order of business  would                                                              
be HOUSE BILL NO.  49, "An Act relating to the  DNA identification                                                              
registration system; and providing for an effective date."                                                                      
Number 1847                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON, speaking  as the  sponsor, relayed  that                                                              
during  his campaign,  [expanding  Alaska's DNA  (deoxyribonucleic                                                              
acid)  database] was  one  of the  issues he  campaigned  on.   He                                                              
mentioned  that he  has taken  a  tour of  the state's  Scientific                                                              
Crime Detection  Laboratory ("Crime Lab") and has  asked questions                                                              
of  the director  regarding  sample collection  and  storage.   He                                                              
noted  that under  current  statute, "1996  is  the earliest  from                                                              
which  DNA can  be taken  from a  felon"; that  at first,  samples                                                              
could  only be  taken  from people  convicted  of  a felony  crime                                                              
against a  person; and  that as  of 2001,  samples could  be taken                                                              
from people convicted of burglary.                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON explained  that  HB 49  would expand  the                                                              
state DNA database  to include all persons convicted  of a felony,                                                              
as  well  as   those  convicted  of  certain   misdemeanor  sexual                                                              
offenses.   He opined that  adoption of  HB 49 would  increase the                                                              
number  of crimes  that  are solved,  prevent  future crimes,  and                                                              
exonerate  the innocent;  he noted that  members' packets  include                                                              
articles detailing  examples of how the collection  of DNA samples                                                              
has  contributed to  the aforementioned.   He  said that  although                                                              
expanding  the DNA  database  may  initially result  in  increased                                                              
costs, he would  argue that it will reduce costs  [to the criminal                                                              
justice system]  in the future,  adding that there  is information                                                              
in members'  packets regarding the  issue of costs.   He suggested                                                              
that adoption of HB 49 will create a win-win situation.                                                                         
The committee took an at-ease from 1:45 p.m. to 1:50 p.m.                                                                       
Number 2070                                                                                                                     
CHRIS  BEHEIM,  Director, Scientific  Crime  Detection  Laboratory                                                              
("Crime  Lab"),  Department of  Public  Safety (DPS),  provided  a                                                              
PowerPoint presentation  in addition to  his spoken comments.   He                                                              
offered the following:                                                                                                          
     Back in  1982 we  were very  limited in our  capability.                                                                   
     Basically,  the only  thing we were  doing is  examining                                                                   
     ...  for  the  presence  of blood  or  semen  stains  on                                                                   
     sexual  assault cases.   In 1987  we hired a  serologist                                                                   
     at  the   laboratory,  and  we  instituted   "ABO  blood                                                                   
     grouping."   And I remember a  case:  we had  a burglary                                                                   
     once,  where the suspect  cut himself,  left some  blood                                                                   
     at the  scene, and  he happened to  be type "AB  blood."                                                                   
     Well,  type AB  blood is the  most rare;  it's found  in                                                                   
     about  5 percent  of the  population,  so those  numbers                                                                   
     give you about 1 in 20.                                                                                                    
     In  1992 we  added our  first  DNA test;  it was  called                                                                   
     "DQ-alpha"  testing.  And this  is a great  breakthrough                                                                   
     because ...  we were using  a process called "PCR"  - or                                                                   
     the  Polymerase  Chain  Reaction."     Not  to  get  too                                                                   
     technical here,  the PCR is  a procedure which  actually                                                                   
     [allows  us to] take  very small  amounts of  biological                                                                   
     material, put  it through the  process and amplify  it -                                                                   
     generate copies of  it - and be able to get  a DNA type.                                                                   
     It was  much more  discriminating than  the ABO  typing,                                                                   
     and [on] average,  you could eliminate about  99 percent                                                                   
     of the population - give you odds [of] about 1 in 100.                                                                     
     Our  first DQ-alpha  case that  we used  in court was  a                                                                   
     homicide  investigation that  happened  up in  Fairbanks                                                                   
     in  1992.    The  victim  had  been  strangled  with  an                                                                   
     electrical  cord, sexually  assaulted, and stabbed  with                                                                   
     a kitchen knife  many times; it was a very  brutal crime                                                                   
     scene.     We  used  the   DQ-alpha  technique   and  we                                                                   
     eliminated  the first suspect  that ... law  enforcement                                                                   
     had brought  in.  The investigation continued,  and when                                                                   
     they  learned  that  a  sexual  offender  who  had  been                                                                   
     recently released  from jail  in Arizona moved  into the                                                                   
     Fairbanks  area  and  was   in  the  neighborhood,  they                                                                   
     checked  into  his  past, and  they  determined  -  they                                                                   
     found  out through  the investigation  - that  he had  a                                                                   
     previous  conviction for sexual  assault and  strangling                                                                   
     his victim with an electrical cord.                                                                                        
Number 2182                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM continued:                                                                                                           
     We seized  his watch,  in (indisc.  - coughing) part  of                                                                   
     the  investigation, and  when we took  the watch  apart,                                                                   
     you can  see that  there was  some blood underneath  the                                                                   
     band   [visible   on   page    4   of   the   PowerPoint                                                                   
     presentation].   This watch  was seized about  six weeks                                                                   
     after  the crime.   The  DNA  type was  obtained on  the                                                                   
     watch,  and  it  matched  back  to  the  victim  of  the                                                                   
     homicide.  There  was other evidence presented,  and the                                                                   
     suspect  was  convicted of  the  crime  and is  back  in                                                                   
     jail.    We enhanced  our  DNA  testing in  '96,  adding                                                                   
     "Polymarker," and  that could eliminate 99.9  percent of                                                                   
     the  population.    But the  big  breakthrough  came  in                                                                   
     1999,  when   we  began   "STR  [short  tandem   repeat]                                                                   
     typing."  This  is an actual statistical number  from an                                                                   
     unsolved  homicide   that  we  have  on   our  convicted                                                                   
     offender   database   [page    5   of   the   PowerPoint                                                                   
     presentation  reads:   1 in  2,111,000,000,000,000,000].                                                                   
     And,  basically, it  was  decided in  1997,  by the  FBI                                                                   
     [Federal Bureau  of Investigation] and a group  of crime                                                                   
     laboratories,  to standardize on  13 specific markers  -                                                                   
     DNA markers.   They're called the 13 core loci.   And at                                                                   
     that   time,   the   test   wasn't   even   commercially                                                                   
     available; it  wasn't 'til the  next year ...  it became                                                                   
     in  use.     But  the  beauty   of  this  is   that  now                                                                   
     laboratories around  the country standardize  on one DNA                                                                   
     typing method,  and it would  allow for laboratories  to                                                                   
     compare   and  share   information.      It  also   made                                                                   
     databasing  much, much  easier  because  the process  is                                                                   
     much  faster and cheaper  and much  more sensitive  than                                                                   
     the  old   techniques  that   were  used  for   database                                                                   
     We knew that  this databasing was coming down  the line,                                                                   
     and  in 1996  a bill  was passed  which established  the                                                                   
     DNA   registration   system.       And   this   required                                                                   
     individuals  convicted  of  a  felony  crime  against  a                                                                   
     person  after January 1  [1996] ...  to provide a  blood                                                                   
     or oral  sample for inclusion  into the database.   Now,                                                                   
     at that  time, we weren't  doing anything with  them but                                                                   
     collecting   the  samples  and   storing  them   at  the                                                                   
     laboratory  in the  freezer.   Burglary was  added as  a                                                                   
     qualifying  conviction  in September  of  2001.   And  I                                                                   
     think  it's  important  to  note that  these  laws  only                                                                   
     included individuals  convicted of a felony  crime after                                                                   
     certain  dates.   So [it's]  after January  1 [1996]  in                                                                   
     the  case  of  felony  crimes   against  a  person,  and                                                                   
     September [2001] for burglary ....                                                                                         
Number 2317                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM went on to say:                                                                                                      
     The system that  allows us to do the databasing  and the                                                                   
     comparisons   and   the  searching   is   called   CODIS                                                                   
     [Combined  DNA Index  System]  ... and  it is  basically                                                                   
     ... software  and support, which is provided  at no cost                                                                   
     by  the  FBI.    They  came  up,  installed  it  at  the                                                                   
     laboratory, and  they support it; they  send technicians                                                                   
     up  when   we  need  them,   and  they  provide   secure                                                                   
     communications back  to the FBI.  There  are two indexes                                                                   
     that we use  to store the DNA information.   [The] first                                                                   
     index  is  called  the  convicted  offender  index,  and                                                                   
     there we  place DNA profiles from individuals  convicted                                                                   
     of  qualifying offenses.    The second  index is  called                                                                   
     the forensic  index, and that contains evidence  that is                                                                   
     recovered at crime scenes.                                                                                                 
     And the purpose  of CODIS is, first of all,  to identify                                                                   
     suspects, and  it's done by  comparing the DNA  profiles                                                                   
     from  the  crime  scenes  to the  DNA  profiles  of  the                                                                   
     convicted  offenders.   The other thing  that CODIS  can                                                                   
     do  is link  cases,  and that's  done  by comparing  DNA                                                                   
     profiles  obtained  from  different   crime  scenes  and                                                                   
     trying to  match them  up.  If a  match [is] obtained  -                                                                   
     for  instance,  a convicted  offender  is matched  to  a                                                                   
     crime scene  - it's  called a hit.   And technically  we                                                                   
     call that  an offender  hit.  If we  have a hit  between                                                                   
     two   seemingly  unrelated   cases,   that's  called   a                                                                   
     forensic hit.   So there's two different types  of hits.                                                                   
     Obviously,   the  forensic   hit   would  [provide   law                                                                   
     enforcement,  then,  with resources].    [The  preceding                                                                   
     bracketed portion  was not on  tape, but taken  from the                                                                   
     Gavel to Gavel recording on the Internet.]                                                                                 
TAPE 03-14, SIDE B                                                                                                            
Number 2375                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM continued:                                                                                                           
     They'd  know  that  cases were  committed  by  the  same                                                                   
     individual   and  they   may   be  able   to  get   some                                                                   
     investigative  information - pool resources,  coordinate                                                                   
     investigations  - and look  for [a] common link  between                                                                   
     cases.   There are different  levels of CODIS.   We have                                                                   
     the  state's level in  Anchorage, and  then there's  the                                                                   
     National DNA  Index System, or  NDIS; NDIS was  open for                                                                   
     business  [on  October  13,   1998].    And,  basically,                                                                   
     laboratories  around the  country can  upload data  into                                                                   
     the   National  DNA   Index  System   and  then   search                                                                   
     different   databases.    So,   our  samples  could   be                                                                   
     searched   against  any   other  participating   state's                                                                   
     In  October  of  [1999]  there were  10  states  in  the                                                                   
     United  States that  were  uploading  DNA profiles  into                                                                   
     the  National DNA  Index System,  using  the latest  STR                                                                   
     technology.    As you  can  see  [from  page 11  of  the                                                                   
     PowerPoint  presentation], Alaska was  one of the  first                                                                   
     states; we were  ahead of both California  and New York,                                                                   
     and we're  very, very proud of  that fact.  So  what was                                                                   
     in  NDIS,  the National  DNA  Index  System?   Well,  in                                                                   
     October  of [1999]  there  were about  20,000  convicted                                                                   
     offender profiles, and about 1,700 forensic profiles.                                                                      
     In  the year  2000 there  was one  hit made  at the  ...                                                                   
     [NDIS],  and  this  involved   a  case  that  [the]  FBI                                                                   
     laboratory worked;  it was an unsolved  rape/murder case                                                                   
     that was submitted  from Iowa.  They analyzed  it, got a                                                                   
     DNA profile,  uploaded it into the [NDIS],  and searched                                                                   
     it against  all the  profiles that  they had at  [NDIS].                                                                   
     It  hit  against  a  convicted  offender  who  had  been                                                                   
     entered  by the  Florida Department  of Law  Enforcement                                                                   
     [FDLE]  laboratory  in Tallahassee.    And you  can  see                                                                   
     [from page 13  of the PowerPoint presentation]  that the                                                                   
     offender had  a prior conviction  in Florida  for sexual                                                                   
     assault in  [1999].  So,  this hit linked that  offender                                                                   
     to the homicide  in Iowa.  Only one hit  in 2000; that's                                                                   
     not very impressive, but things have changed.                                                                              
Number 2283                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM went on to say:                                                                                                      
     Now, CODIS --  actually, in December, Hawaii  became the                                                                   
     50th  state to  get a  CODIS  ... installed,  so all  50                                                                   
     states have  the software on  hand, and many  states are                                                                   
     uploading.   There  are now  over a  million profiles  -                                                                   
     probably approaching  a million and a half  profiles [in                                                                   
     NDIS].   There  are 42 states,  the two  federal labs  -                                                                   
     the  FBI  and  the  Army  lab  -  and  Puerto  Rico  ...                                                                   
     uploading.   So  what's  in our  database?   January  of                                                                   
     2003  ...  we  had  [a]  little   over  3,000  convicted                                                                   
     offender  samples in  our  database.   We  also had  242                                                                   
     forensic  profiles;  these  are profiles  obtained  from                                                                   
     crime  scenes.   Included  in this  number  are 126  "no                                                                   
     suspect"  forensic   samples;  these  are   crime  scene                                                                   
     evidence  that law enforcement  really doesn't  know who                                                                   
     the perpetrator  was.  And  this 126 number  includes 11                                                                   
     unsolved homicides,  80 sexual assaults,  28 burglaries,                                                                   
     [and] 7 miscellaneous cases.                                                                                               
     We are working  very hard to add additional  samples - I                                                                   
     just talked  [to] the  lab this morning  - we should  be                                                                   
     adding another  20 or so  burglary cases, hopefully,  in                                                                   
     the  next  week.    We  are  also  working  on  unsolved                                                                   
     homicides;  I believe the  commissioner might have  told                                                                   
     you  about the  "cold  case"  units that  are  operating                                                                   
     around the  state looking at  evidence from old  cases -                                                                   
     we have  entered, I  think, our  oldest cases from  1978                                                                   
     into  the system.   We  have several  assaults from  the                                                                   
     early [1990s]  - assaults on children - that  I would be                                                                   
     very anxious to get a hit on.                                                                                              
     Our first  hit in  the database  occurred in October  of                                                                   
     2001.   This was  a forensic  hit.   We linked a  sexual                                                                   
     assault  that  took  place  in Anchorage  in  August  of                                                                   
     [1997]  to  another  sexual  assault  that  happened  in                                                                   
     December  of [1998].   We did  not have any  information                                                                   
     to provide  the investigator  as to who the  perpetrator                                                                   
     was - we  could just tell them that the  same individual                                                                   
     was involved  in both crimes.   [On] January 25  of last                                                                   
     year  we had  our  first NDIS  hit.   Basically,  I  was                                                                   
     called by  the CODIS manager  from the state  of Oregon,                                                                   
     and he informed  me that one of our crime  scene samples                                                                   
     from  a  1995  Fairbanks  investigation  hit  against  a                                                                   
     convicted  offender sample  that they  had just  entered                                                                   
     into  their database  in Oregon.   What was  interesting                                                                   
     about  this was  that  in January,  January  1 of  2002,                                                                   
     Oregon  went   to  an  all   felon  database,   and  the                                                                   
     convicted offender  who was  added was added  because of                                                                   
     a drug conviction - a felony drug conviction.                                                                              
Number 2170                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM continued:                                                                                                           
     [On] March  7 of  last year, we  had our first  offender                                                                   
     hit in our  state database.  This involved  a woman from                                                                   
     Bethel who  was picked  up in front  of the ...  village                                                                   
     store up  there, sexually assaulted,  thrown out  of the                                                                   
     vehicle  - the perpetrator's  vehicle  - and she  didn't                                                                   
     have a clue  who the assailant was.  We  entered the DNA                                                                   
     profile  that we obtained  from the  sexual assault  kit                                                                   
     into CODIS,  and we got  a hit.   I was very  pleased to                                                                   
     call up  the Bethel police  department and provide  them                                                                   
     with the name  of the individual.  And when  I gave them                                                                   
     the name, they  were well aware of that person  - he had                                                                   
     been a  very active  criminal in the  Bethel area  - but                                                                   
     they had no  idea he was related to this crime.   And he                                                                   
     at  first denied  being  the  offender, but  then,  when                                                                   
     presented  with the  DNA evidence, he  changed his  plea                                                                   
     and is now back in jail.                                                                                                   
     In April  of last  year, we  had another  hit.  A  woman                                                                   
     was  abducted from  downtown Anchorage,  taken out  into                                                                   
     the  valley,  [and]  sexually  assaulted.    During  the                                                                   
     assault  she  struggled with  the  assailant,  scratched                                                                   
     him, and  got some of  his blood on  her clothing.   The                                                                   
     [Alaska]  State  Troopers submitted  the  clothing  from                                                                   
     the assault  victim to the  laboratory; we were  able to                                                                   
     isolate  the  bloodstains,  extract  DNA, and  enter  it                                                                   
     into  ... CODIS.    We conducted  a  search  and it  hit                                                                   
     against  the  two  unsolved  Anchorage  sexual  assaults                                                                   
     that  we had  matched  that had  happened  four or  five                                                                   
     years prior.   The victim also provided  law enforcement                                                                   
     with the license  plate number of the assailant,  and he                                                                   
     was  eventually arrested  down  in Houston,  Texas,  and                                                                   
     brought  back to Alaska,  and I  believe he is  awaiting                                                                   
     trial  on  at  least  five  sexual  assaults  -  we  had                                                                   
     another CODIS hit on his sample.                                                                                           
     [On]  October  11 of  last  year,  we had  another  hit.                                                                   
     This  involved a University  of Alaska  student who  was                                                                   
     sexually  assaulted.   An  individual  was arrested  for                                                                   
     that  crime, and  when we got  his DNA  sample, then  we                                                                   
     did  a comparison,  and found  that  he was  eliminated:                                                                   
     he  could  not   have  been  the  perpetrator   of  this                                                                   
     assault.   The DNA, then,  from the victim,  was entered                                                                   
     into  the  database  and  it  hit  against  a  convicted                                                                   
     offender.     And,   again,  law   enforcement  had   no                                                                   
     connection  to that  offender and  probably would  never                                                                   
     have solved the case without the database.                                                                                 
Number 2049                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM relayed:                                                                                                             
     As of  February 25 [2003] we've  had a total of  19 hits                                                                   
     in  our  database:   12  of  these have  been  convicted                                                                   
     offender  to forensic  hits - the  crime scene  evidence                                                                   
     ...; and 7  of these are case to case hits  - connecting                                                                   
     two or  more cases -  showing that the same  perpetrator                                                                   
     was  involved.   This  has  really  surprised me  -  the                                                                   
     number of hits  that we were able to generate  in such a                                                                   
     short  time;  ...  I've been  totally  amazed  at  this.                                                                   
     We've  aided a  total  of 23  different  investigations.                                                                   
     If  you look  at this  table,  Investigations Aided  [on                                                                   
     page 23  of the PowerPoint presentation],  it's provided                                                                   
     by the FBI,  you can see these are  investigations aided                                                                   
     through  October 2002.    You can  see  that Alaska,  at                                                                   
     that time we  had 22 hits, and if you look,  compared to                                                                   
     other states,  we have one of the highest  hit rates per                                                                   
     capita.   You  see  we've  had 22  investigation  aided,                                                                   
     California had  99.  So we're doing an  outstanding job,                                                                   
     but I think we could do much better.                                                                                       
     There's  been a  lot of  media  coverage on  DNA.   This                                                                   
     article in  USA Today [shown on  pages 24 and 25  of the                                                                 
     PowerPoint  presentation], pointing  out that just  four                                                                   
     states account  for 56 percent  of all the  matches, and                                                                   
     many  states   don't  have  a  single  match   in  their                                                                   
     database. ...  One of the things that convinces  me that                                                                   
     we could do  better is ... [from] information  I got off                                                                   
     the  Internet the  other day.    A law  firm in  Tacoma,                                                                   
     Washington,  that  specializes  in DNA  database  issues                                                                   
     analyzed  the database laws  from all  50 states.   And,                                                                   
     actually,  the  state  of   Alaska's  database  law  was                                                                   
     ranked  near the  bottom  as being  one  of the  weakest                                                                   
     laws in  the country.  In  fact, only Connecticut  had a                                                                   
     state law  which was rated lower.   They used a 1  to 20                                                                   
     scale,  20  being  the  highest;  Alaska  was  rated  5.                                                                   
     Oregon,  on the  other  hand, was  given  ... a  perfect                                                                   
     score of 20.                                                                                                               
Number 1956                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM continued:                                                                                                           
     So,  that  brings  the  question:     Should  [Alaska's]                                                                   
     database  law be expanded?   And how  would we  do that?                                                                   
     Well, currently,  there are  40 states' and  the federal                                                                   
     DNA database  laws that are retroactive, and  they would                                                                   
     collect  from   anybody  still  incarcerated   or  under                                                                   
     control - under  probation or parole - for  a qualifying                                                                   
     conviction.   And if you remember, our database  law was                                                                   
     not   retroactive;   it   would    only   collect   from                                                                   
     individuals convicted  after a starting point.   So what                                                                   
     this  means is,  we  have people  sitting  in jail  that                                                                   
     committed a  crime in [1995]  that don't have to  give a                                                                   
     sample, and the  only way we'll get a sample  from them,                                                                   
     as things  stands right  now, is  if they are  released,                                                                   
     reoffend, are  caught, convicted and thrown back  in the                                                                   
     slammer,  and  then required  to  provide.   That's  the                                                                   
     only way  that we  can search  their DNA sample  against                                                                   
     unsolved cases.                                                                                                            
     And law enforcement  [officials] have told me  that they                                                                   
     are convinced  that we have individuals sitting  in jail                                                                   
     that have definitely  committed other crimes.   Some are                                                                   
     suspected of  committing other murders in Alaska  and in                                                                   
     the  Lower  48,  and since  these  acts  were  committed                                                                   
     before  the  qualifying  time  of the  current  law,  we                                                                   
     don't  have samples  from them.   There  are 24  states,                                                                   
     now,  that collect  from all  felons.   South Dakota,  I                                                                   
     was  just informed  yesterday,  just  expanded, so  they                                                                   
     became  the 24th state,  the first  state this year,  to                                                                   
     go  "all   felons."    And   this  makes  a   tremendous                                                                   
     difference.    Many  states   are  collecting  from  all                                                                   
     registered sex  offenders; Alaska does not.   It's not a                                                                   
     felony  crime  to commit  attempted  sexual abuse  of  a                                                                   
     minor in  Alaska; even though  it would require  someone                                                                   
     to register  as a sex offender,  we do not  have samples                                                                   
     from them.                                                                                                                 
     Many states have  made it a felony to refuse  to provide                                                                   
     a  DNA  sample  -  ... the  point  being  here  that  if                                                                   
     someone  is convicted  of burglary,  ... he might  think                                                                   
     that  his  DNA  might  be   on  file  for  committing  a                                                                   
     homicide or  two, [and] he  just might [be]  inclined to                                                                   
     refuse  to give a  DNA sample  and take the  misdemeanor                                                                   
     rather than  risk a homicide conviction.   The law could                                                                   
     also   be  expanded   to   increase   the  penalty   for                                                                   
     unauthorized  disclosure  of  DNA records.    There  are                                                                   
     concerns  that  that  DNA   can  be  misused:    genetic                                                                   
     information could  be obtained from the samples  to look                                                                   
     to see  if someone might  have a propensity  for getting                                                                   
     a certain disease  [for example].  What I  would like to                                                                   
     see  done   would  be  to   increase  the  penalty   for                                                                   
     unauthorized use  of DNA records to make  that a felony;                                                                   
     it's currently a misdemeanor.                                                                                              
Number 1809                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GARA,  on the issue of unauthorized use,  said:  "I                                                              
certainly want the  evidence to be used to help  convict people; I                                                              
certainly want  the evidence to  be used to help  exonerate people                                                              
who  are wrongly  convicted.   Beyond  either  of  those uses,  is                                                              
there any use that you consider to be legitimate?"                                                                              
MR. BEHEIM said yes.  The one other use would be for gathering                                                                  
statistical population data for court testimony.  He elaborated:                                                                
     We  use  that by  removing  any  personally  identifying                                                                   
     information, using  the same markers - the  same 13 core                                                                   
     loci   markers.     But  in   Alaska   we  have   unique                                                                   
     populations,  Native  populations, that  we  need to  do                                                                   
     research  on to  see how  unique a  specific profile  is                                                                   
     within  a given population.   For  example, when  we run                                                                   
     and  generate a  profile, we  typically  report out  the                                                                   
     population  frequencies for  different races -  there'll                                                                   
     be  information   for  Caucasians,  African   Americans,                                                                   
     Yupik, Inupiat,  and Athabascans - and the  numbers vary                                                                   
     slightly between the different groups.                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE GARA  remarked that the accuracy of  DNA testing is                                                              
strong  enough  that  everybody   in  the  state  probably  has  a                                                              
different DNA  reading.  "So  you're not  saying that you  need to                                                              
do a statistical  analysis to see if there are many  people in the                                                              
state  with the  same  DNA reading  - that's  not  the point,"  he                                                              
MR.  BEHEIM  said no,  it's  to  be able  to  present  statistical                                                              
numbers in court;  the courts have found that they  need that type                                                              
of  information  presented.   Basically,  this  information  takes                                                              
away the argument  that since there are close-knit  communities in                                                              
Alaska, that  a DNA  sample might not  have the astronomical  odds                                                              
of  1  in  2 quintillion  [of  identifying  a  specific  suspect].                                                              
Therefore,  the  Crime  Lab's  research   using  "law  enforcement                                                              
identification   markers"   illustrates    for   the   court   the                                                              
significance of a DNA match.                                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA   asked  whether  HB  49   contains  language                                                              
defining  either  authorized  use   or  unauthorized  use  of  DNA                                                              
Number 1672                                                                                                                     
ANNE  CARPENETI,   Assistant  Attorney  General,   Legal  Services                                                              
Section-Juneau,  Criminal  Division,   Department  of  Law  (DOL),                                                              
indicated that  HB 49  itself does  not contain such  definitions;                                                              
instead,  AS 44.41.035(f)  currently sets  up the authorized  uses                                                              
for DNA samples.                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON mentioned  the that  there is a  proposed                                                              
committee  substitute (CS)  from the governor's  office that  will                                                              
include a provision regarding the unlawful use of DNA samples.                                                                  
CHAIR  McGUIRE  relayed  that the  aforementioned  provision  will                                                              
     A  person  commits the  crime  of  unlawful use  of  DNA                                                                   
     samples if  the person knowingly, without  authorization                                                                   
     under AS  44.41.035, possesses or allows  another person                                                                   
     access  to a  blood, oral,  or  tissue sample  collected                                                                   
     for  inclusion in  the DNA  identification  registration                                                                   
CHAIR McGUIRE posited  that this language will make  it clear, via                                                              
reference  to AS 44.41.035,  what  the authorized  uses are.   She                                                              
noted that also  included in the aforementioned CS  is a provision                                                              
to make unlawful use of DNA samples a class C felony.                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON indicated that  the aforementioned  CS is                                                              
not yet in its final form.                                                                                                      
MR. BEHEIM  offered  that Virginia's  DNA database  is one  of the                                                              
largest  and oldest  databases in  the  country.   He offered  the                                                              
following statistics:   in  1998 there were  5 cold hits;  in 1999                                                              
there were  74 cold  hits; in 2000  there were  178 cold  hits; in                                                              
2001 there  were 308 cold  hits; and in  2002 there were  445 cold                                                              
hits.  A  cold hit, he explained,  is when the lab enters  a crime                                                              
scene sample  into the database  without any knowledge of  who the                                                              
perpetrator  is, and it  results in  a match.   He mentioned  that                                                              
included in  these statistics  are 44 hits  on homicide  cases; 65                                                              
hits on  sexual assault  cases;  and 153 hits  on cases  involving                                                              
property crimes.   He also  mentioned that cumulatively,  Virginia                                                              
has "just  topped 1,000  hits in the  Virginia database;  they are                                                              
an 'all felon' state."                                                                                                          
Number 1422                                                                                                                     
MR.  BEHEIM   [referring   to  pages  28-31   of  the   PowerPoint                                                              
presentation]   mentioned  that   when  broken  down,   Virginia's                                                              
statistics  show the  number of  cold  hits for  each category  of                                                              
prior  conviction.   He noted  that  the percentage  of cold  hits                                                              
wherein  the  offender  had  a  prior  conviction  for  drugs  was                                                              
higher, at 18 percent,  than for those with a prior  conviction in                                                              
the categories  of crimes  against a person,  at a combined  total                                                              
of 17 percent:   sex crime, 7 percent; [wound/assault,  6 percent;                                                              
and  homicide/abduction/kidnapping,  4 percent].    He also  noted                                                              
that those who were  placed in the Virginia database  because of a                                                              
felony  drug  conviction   are  having  their  DNA   hit  on  many                                                              
homicides [23  percent], sexual  offenses [18 percent],  and other                                                              
crimes - especially  property crimes [48 percent].   Additionally,                                                              
those  who were  placed  in the  Virginia  database  because of  a                                                              
forgery  conviction -  what  many consider  to  be a  white-collar                                                              
crime  in which the  perpetrator  isn't someone  who is likely  to                                                              
commit a violent  crime - had their  DNA hit on 10  homicides [and                                                              
14 sexual offenses].   The statistics indicate that  85 percent of                                                              
Virginia's hits would  have been missed if that  database had been                                                              
limited to only violent offenders.                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON remarked  that a  constituent of  his has                                                              
expressed the  concern about including  samples from  persons with                                                              
multiple DWI (driving while intoxicated) convictions.  He                                                                       
invited Mr. Beheim to comment.                                                                                                  
MR. BEHEIM said:                                                                                                                
     I believe  that ... if  we would look  and were  able to                                                                   
     get the statistics,  I'm sure that they would  have some                                                                   
     hits  from individuals  convicted of  felony DWI. ...  I                                                                   
     know  of cases  from England,  where  their database  is                                                                   
     very expansive  - they have the largest database  in the                                                                   
     world  right   now  -  where  ...  they've   solved  old                                                                   
     homicides from people arrested for DWI.                                                                                    
REPRESENTATIVE GARA asked:                                                                                                      
     Why  would  we  expand  the  DNA  list  to  include  the                                                                   
     storage,  the  taking,  the   processing  of  DNA  blood                                                                   
     samples  from  people  whose convictions  are  the  kind                                                                   
     that don't  show they have  a propensity for  violence -                                                                   
     somebody  who  passes a  bad  check, somebody  who  lies                                                                   
     under  oath -  the  things  like that?    You've got  me                                                                   
     convinced  that  we  need   to  collect  and  store  and                                                                   
     process  the  DNA  evidence  of  people  who  engage  in                                                                   
     violence,  who   threaten  violence,  who   use  weapons                                                                   
     during their  crimes, ... who  engage in sexual  conduct                                                                   
     that's inappropriate  and criminal.  I'm  just wondering                                                                   
     about  this  other  category  of  people  who  are  non-                                                                   
     violent, ... or why we would store their evidence.                                                                         
Number 1169                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM replied:                                                                                                             
     I  think  the  evidence  that   Virginia  has  for  just                                                                   
     individuals   convicted  of   felony  drug   possession,                                                                   
     [showing]   that  they   are   also  committing   sexual                                                                   
     assaults  and  homicides,  is pretty  convincing.    And                                                                   
     [the]  same  with  the case  [of]  ...  forgery;  again,                                                                   
     that's  a  non-violent  crime, yet  people  with  felony                                                                   
     forgery  convictions are also  perpetrating other  types                                                                   
     of crime.                                                                                                                  
REPRESENTATIVE GARA asked Mr. Beheim to elaborate on the                                                                        
statistic regarding the 10 homicides related to hits from those                                                                 
convicted of forgery.                                                                                                           
MR.  BEHEIM  explained  that  those   10  homicide  crimes  solved                                                              
constituted  14 percent  of the  total number  of hits from  those                                                              
convicted of forgery.                                                                                                           
REPRESENTATIVE ANDERSON  indicated that even one  hit [that solves                                                              
a homicide] makes it worthwhile [to expand the DNA database].                                                                   
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA said he  merely wants to  make sure  they are                                                              
doing  something  relevant.    He  asked  whether  there  are  any                                                              
statistics  which demonstrate  that a person  who commits  forgery                                                              
is more likely,  when compared to a general member  of the public,                                                              
to engage  in a  violent crime.   If  people who  are engaging  in                                                              
these  non-violent  crimes don't  have  a greater  propensity  for                                                              
violence  than people  in the general  public,  "why are we  doing                                                              
it," he asked.                                                                                                                  
MR.  BEHEIM  indicated  that  he  did  not  have  those  types  of                                                              
statistics,  and reiterated  that  85 percent  of Virginia's  hits                                                              
would have been  missed if that database had been  limited to only                                                              
violent offenders.                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA said he  wants to ensure,  if they  do expand                                                              
the DNA  database,  that it is  being expanded  to [only]  include                                                              
people who have  a higher propensity to do something  violent, and                                                              
to  that end,  he relayed  that he  would like  to see  statistics                                                              
regarding the  types of crimes  whose perpetrators fall  into that                                                              
MR.  BEHEIM  reiterate  that  he  did  not  have  those  types  of                                                              
statistics.     He   suggested   that  perhaps   a  professor   in                                                              
criminology or sociology might have such data.                                                                                  
Number 0800                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON  offered  his belief  that  the  national                                                              
statistics  do illustrate  that  such  a propensity  exists  among                                                              
convicted felons of all types of crimes.                                                                                        
REPRESENTATIVE GARA replied:                                                                                                    
     Just  so the  public understands,  ... I  may very  well                                                                   
     support  the bill as  written, but  the big question  is                                                                   
     how broadly  should we  expand the  DNA database.   Each                                                                   
     piece of DNA  that we take and that we process  and that                                                                   
     we  store costs  us a certain  amount of  money.   Right                                                                   
     now there's  federal money to  pay for that, ...  but in                                                                   
     a  few years  maybe there  won't  be.   And then,  maybe                                                                   
     we've expanded  this database  so broadly that  it's now                                                                   
     cutting  into  our  public   safety  budget,  and  we're                                                                   
     losing  troopers  on  the streets  and  law  enforcement                                                                   
     officers on the street in Anchorage.                                                                                       
     And maybe this  is the time for us to say,  "Well, let's                                                                   
     figure  out  how broad  to  make  it,  but not  make  it                                                                   
     broader than  we need to,  and not increase  the expense                                                                   
     broader  than we  need to."   So  I think  I keep  going                                                                   
     back  to:   ... If  the person's  convicted  of a  crime                                                                   
     that  gives  us any  reasonable  expectation  that  they                                                                   
     might  be  more likely  than  a  general member  of  the                                                                   
     public to  commit a violent  crime in the future,  let's                                                                   
     take  their DNA  evidence. ...  But my  concern is,  why                                                                   
     are  we taking  it  from people  if  we  don't have  any                                                                   
     understanding  whether or not  they're more likely  than                                                                   
     the average  person to  commit a violent  crime?   And I                                                                   
     guess I'm struggling with that.                                                                                            
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  sought confirmation  that  fingerprints                                                              
are  collected  from a  large  variety  of people,  regardless  of                                                              
whether  they have  committed a  crime, including  members of  the                                                              
military  and  people   who  apply  for  membership   in  the  bar                                                              
association,   and  often  are   simply  used   as  a   method  of                                                              
MR. BEHEIM confirmed this.                                                                                                      
Number 0560                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG asked  Mr. Beheim  whether there  is any                                                              
real difference between [DNA samples] and fingerprints.                                                                         
MR. BEHEIM said:   "Not the way that we are applying  it here.  We                                                              
are strictly  using law  enforcement identification  markers here.                                                              
We're  treating  the  DNA  as a  piece  of  identification."    In                                                              
response to  questions, he acknowledged  that having a  DNA sample                                                              
of all children  born could assist law enforcement  in identifying                                                              
individuals  who are later  kidnapped, as  well as in  identifying                                                              
found  human remains  burned beyond  recognition  in a  fire.   He                                                              
also mentioned  that the  NDIS currently  has indexes  for missing                                                              
persons.  In  addition, the NDIS also allows  relatives of missing                                                              
persons  to volunteer  their DNA  for the  purpose of  "paternity-                                                              
type  testing"; he  noted that  those  types of  samples are  kept                                                              
separate  and not included  in the  samples that  can be  searched                                                              
against samples collected at crime scenes.                                                                                      
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG  said it doesn't seem to  him that "this"                                                              
is  much different  than any  other  type of  identification.   On                                                              
that  point,   he  asked   why  "this"   should  be  treated   any                                                              
MR. BEHEIM  pointed out  that DNA testing  is much more  expensive                                                              
than "rolling  a fingerprint  card."   Thus it  would not  be cost                                                              
effective  to  just take  everybody's  DNA  and  put it  into  the                                                              
system; the  costs would  be astronomical.   He surmised  that the                                                              
cost of  DNA testing is  the reason why  states have  set specific                                                              
limits regarding whose samples are collected.                                                                                   
CHAIR  McGUIRE  noted  the  legislature  must  also  consider  the                                                              
privacy  issues surrounding  DNA  testing  and sample  collection.                                                              
She  reminded  members that  DNA  doesn't  just reveal  one's  own                                                              
genetic  makeup, but  also that  of  one's blood  relations.   She                                                              
remarked  that it is  critical to  ensure that  collecting  DNA is                                                              
done for the  right reasons, and  that when people use  it for the                                                              
wrong reasons,  "we put the hammer  down on them  heavily" because                                                              
the potential for  misuse of DNA information is  much greater than                                                              
for misuse of fingerprint information.                                                                                          
REPRESENTATIVE GRUENBERG asked what the cost is per sample.                                                                     
Number 0289                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM said  that the cost for a convicted-offender  sample is                                                              
about $40.   He noted that this  price does not apply  to forensic                                                              
evidence.        For    convicted-offender    samples,    contract                                                              
laboratories,  which often  are  highly automated,  are  utilized.                                                              
In  contrast, a  lot  more  care has  to  be taken  with  forensic                                                              
samples, he added.                                                                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA  relayed that  one  of his  concerns  centers                                                              
around  the  cost;  he  said  he wants  to  ensure  that  the  DNA                                                              
database  isn't so  big that  "we're going  to end  up taking  law                                                              
enforcement  officers off  the street to  pay for  it."   He asked                                                              
whether there is  any data regarding the cost, in  addition to the                                                              
$40  per  sample,  to  law  enforcement  for  taking  the  sample,                                                              
temporarily  storing  it,  sending  it off  to  the  [laboratory],                                                              
receiving it back, and then storing it for the long term.                                                                       
MR. BEHEIM  said he did not  have any information  regarding those                                                              
costs.   He noted, however,  that the collection  of a  DNA sample                                                              
involves  just taking  an  oral  swab, which  is  often now  being                                                              
collected,  along  with  fingerprints,  at sentencing.    He  also                                                              
clarified that in  addition to the aforementioned  $40 per sample,                                                              
which  is the  cost  of processing  the  sample,  the DNA  sample-                                                              
collecting kits themselves cost about $10 each, maybe less.                                                                     
MR.  BEHEIM, returning  to  his  presentation, relayed  that  when                                                              
Oregon  expanded its  DNA  database last  January  to include  all                                                              
felons, the hit  rate in the first  year went up 400  percent.  He                                                              
indicated  that  of those  offenders  with  hits, 22  percent  had                                                              
prior felony drug  convictions and 21 percent had  prior sex crime                                                              
TAPE 03-15, SIDE A                                                                                                            
Number 0001                                                                                                                     
MR. BEHEIM [referring  to page 34 of the  PowerPoint presentation]                                                              
posited that the  recent trend around the nation is  to expand DNA                                                              
databases to  all felons:  there  were 5 states in 1998;  6 states                                                              
in 1999; 7 states  in 2000; 14 states in 2001;  23 states in 2002;                                                              
and,  in addition  to  North Dakota  just  becoming  one of  those                                                              
states, [15] other  states have such legislation  pending in 2003.                                                              
Turning  again to the  question  of why Alaska  should expand  its                                                              
DNA  database, he  posited that  law enforcement  will catch  more                                                              
criminals,  the  innocent  will  be exonerated,  it  will  enhance                                                              
public safety, and  it is very cost effective.   He mentioned that                                                              
June  3, 2002, the  Crime Lab  had a  CODIS hit  against a  sexual                                                              
assault  that  happened  in  Anchorage  in  2000.    The  criminal                                                              
history  of the  offender  showed that  he  had convictions  going                                                              
back to [1984].   Mr. Beheim  remarked that had Alaska's  law been                                                              
retroactive, when  that offender  was in jail  in 1996 for  a 1994                                                              
conviction, they  could have collected  a DNA sample then,  and he                                                              
would  have created  a  hit from  the  2000 sexual  assault;  thus                                                              
preventing his subsequent victim in 2001 from being assaulted.                                                                  
MR.   BEHEIM  [turning   to   pages   38-41  of   the   PowerPoint                                                              
presentation]  highlighted the  issue of  costs and  funding.   He                                                              
relayed  that the  congressional  budget passed  in February  2003                                                              
includes  millions  of  dollars  for DNA  [issues]:    over  $40.5                                                              
million  for  the  Crime Lab  Improvement  Program  (CLIP),  $28.1                                                              
million for DNA  grants, and $13.1 million for  DNA "elimination."                                                              
He  noted that  current  federal  DNA legislation  has  bipartisan                                                              
support,  and that congressional  Senate  Bill 149 "includes  $100                                                              
million  for  DNA  authorization."   He  stated  his  belief  that                                                              
Alaska would be  able to get federal funds to pay  for "the entire                                                              
program,"  and   that  Congress   would  authorize  "this"   as  a                                                              
continuing program.   He also  mentioned that in  President Bush's                                                              
proposed  2004  budget,  there  is almost  $130  million  for  DNA                                                              
backlog elimination,  and that there  is a large  research project                                                              
in progress  to increase DNA  capacity and develop  new technology                                                              
that will lower the costs of DNA collection and testing.                                                                        
MR. BEHEIM [referring  to page 42 of the  powerpoint presentation]                                                              
highlighted some  of the safeguards  already in place  with regard                                                              
to  the  DNA  process:    laboratories   performing  analyses  are                                                              
accredited; lab  procedures are strictly controlled  and reviewed;                                                              
all hits  to convicted  offenders are  confirmed; CODIS  computers                                                              
and lines are very  secure; and DNA profiles provide  no health or                                                              
genetic  information.    He  noted that  all  CODIS  operators  go                                                              
through a  national security check  before they are  authorized to                                                              
utilize the system.                                                                                                             
REPRESENTATIVE   GARA  asked  how   long  they  could   anticipate                                                              
receiving  federal   funding  to  cover  the  costs   of  Alaska's                                                              
MR. BEHEIM suggested four to five years.                                                                                        
Number 0690                                                                                                                     
DALE  PITTMAN, Police  Chief,  University  of Alaska  -  Anchorage                                                              
(UAA),  recapped  the sexual  assault  incident mentioned  by  Mr.                                                              
Beheim that  took place at the  UAA wherein the first  suspect was                                                              
exonerated  by  the  DNA  evidence,   and  a  second  suspect  was                                                              
subsequently  convicted because  of the  DNA evidence.   He  noted                                                              
that in  addition to a  previous crime  of assault for  which he'd                                                              
had his DNA  sample taken in 1997,  the man that was  convicted of                                                              
the 2002 sexual  assault had also been convicted  previously for a                                                              
misdemeanor sexual  offense.  He  opined that it would  be helpful                                                              
if the  DNA database  were expanded  to include,  at the  minimum,                                                              
samples  from  all  those  convicted  of  any  misdemeanor  sexual                                                              
Number 0815                                                                                                                     
LINDA  WILSON,  Deputy  Director, Public  Defender  Agency  (PDA),                                                              
Department  of  Administration,  said  that the  PDA  has  several                                                              
concerns with HB 49.  She elaborated:                                                                                           
     There are,  of course, several  concerns that  the [PDA]                                                                   
     has  with  the proposed  significant  expansion  of  the                                                                   
     list  of  crimes for  which  a  person is  convicted  or                                                                   
     adjudicated  that would  require  the person  to give  a                                                                   
     DNA sample  - those crimes  that have been added  to the                                                                   
     list, as  already have been  mentioned.  But I  think we                                                                   
     need  to look  at  all of  them.   [There  are] two  sex                                                                   
     offense  misdemeanors,  but   [with]  the  inclusion  of                                                                   
     every  felony, this would  add over  80 offenses  to the                                                                   
     list  of   the  felonies  currently  targeted   for  DNA                                                                   
     sampling.   Under  Title 11  - there  are many  offenses                                                                   
     under  that   title;  also   under  Title  28,   so,  as                                                                   
     Representative Gara  mentioned, DWI - felony  DWI.  That                                                                   
     would also include  felony failure to stop,  under Title                                                                   
     4;  it would  include  felonies under  that.   It  could                                                                   
     include  issuing   a  bad  check;  felony   shoplifting;                                                                   
     vehicle  theft; [and]  criminal mischief.   And it  adds                                                                   
     over 80  offenses to  the current list.   And these  are                                                                   
     ones  that  are  not  ...  a  violent  crime  against  a                                                                   
     In  some of  the  examples given,  it  appears that  the                                                                   
     people that  were identified  in the database  had prior                                                                   
     misdemeanors,  but they  also had  a burglary  or ...  a                                                                   
     violent  crime against  a person that  would already  be                                                                   
     covered under  the current [law].  Certainly,  there are                                                                   
     concerns  with privacy,  that if  this serious  invasion                                                                   
     of a  person's privacy  that would  be impacted by  this                                                                   
     bill  [were] warranted,  right now it  is a  misdemeanor                                                                   
     to refuse  to supply  that DNA sample.   The [PDA]  does                                                                   
     not  represent very  many people that  are charged  with                                                                   
     that.   Certainly keeping  it a  misdemeanor - we  would                                                                   
     strongly   encourage.     Raising   it   to  a   felony,                                                                   
     especially  when you're  including misdemeanor  offenses                                                                   
     in the  hits that you would  require a sample,  then, if                                                                   
     the  person  does not  provide  the sample,  ...  giving                                                                   
     them  a  felony for  a  misdemeanor  underlying  offense                                                                   
     seems extreme.                                                                                                             
Number 0969                                                                                                                     
MS. WILSON continued:                                                                                                           
     [We]   also   have   concerns   with   the   retroactive                                                                   
     application  that is  mentioned, and  those would be  ex                                                                   
     post  facto concerns.   The other  consideration I  have                                                                   
     is  that in  all [of]  the studies  and the  information                                                                   
     received in  the presentation from Mr. Beheim,  it seems                                                                   
     there  is no  provision or  mechanism in  this bill  for                                                                   
     exonerating   innocent   people  who   were   wrongfully                                                                   
     convicted  a  substantial period  ago.   It  looks  like                                                                   
     most  of   the  efforts  are   for  ongoing   or  active                                                                   
     investigations.    But  what   about  a  person  who  is                                                                   
     sitting  in  jail  who  has  been  wrongfully  convicted                                                                   
     prior  to [1995  or 1996],  where  there was  biological                                                                   
     evidence  taken  at  the  scene   that  has  never  been                                                                   
     In the  bill as  passed now, the  offender may  have his                                                                   
     DNA  sample  taken, but  what's  missing is  there's  no                                                                   
     mechanism  for accessing  that DNA evidence  that is  at                                                                   
     the scene  that may  be sitting in  a records locker  in                                                                   
     the  basement of  a  jail or  ... a  police  department.                                                                   
     That  forensic  evidence is  in  the possession  of  the                                                                   
     public  safety [agency].   It is  not easily  accessible                                                                   
     for  a  person who  is  sitting  in  jail who  has  been                                                                   
     convicted.    So,  it applies  to  ongoing  or  unsolved                                                                   
     crimes.    But  what  if  a   person's  been  wrongfully                                                                   
     convicted?   And  certainly  across  the country,  there                                                                   
     are,  in over  30  states, provisions  for  a person  to                                                                   
     access DNA  sampling or  apply to a  court to get  a DNA                                                                   
     sample;  test,  then,  and   see;  and  make  a  showing                                                                   
     whether  or not that  sample matches  what was taken  at                                                                   
     the crime scene. ...                                                                                                       
     That  may not  be something  that could  be included  in                                                                   
     this bill and  it may ... be a whole separate  bill, but                                                                   
     it  certainly is  a  consideration that  if  one of  the                                                                   
     purposes  stated is  to  exonerate innocent  people,  it                                                                   
     would be  nice if we  could look at  some of the  people                                                                   
     that   may   be  convicted.   ...   I  did   submit   an                                                                   
     indeterminate  fiscal note.   We represent people  right                                                                   
     now  who  are  charged  with  that  ...  misdemeanor  of                                                                   
     failing  to provide;  ... there's hardly  any of  those.                                                                   
     If it  was raised  to a felony,  certainly, there  would                                                                   
     be more  of ... those.   But, at this point,  there's no                                                                   
     way  of knowing  -  ... especially  if  you expand  this                                                                   
     list of  crimes that  you would  be including, that  you                                                                   
     would want  a DNA sample [for]  - how many  people would                                                                   
     then refuse in the future.                                                                                                 
MS. WILSON said this is a well-intended bill, but the PDA has                                                                   
concerns with it.  She said she would be happy to work with the                                                                 
Number 1117                                                                                                                     
CHAIR  MCGUIRE  noted  that  she   and  Representatives  Gara  and                                                              
Anderson  have discussed  the  issue  of exonerating  the  wrongly                                                              
convicted, adding  that the testimony  from the university  police                                                              
provided  an excellent  example  of  DNA samples  exonerating  the                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA said  he agreed  with  the exoneration  point                                                              
and is  considering whether  it should be  addressed in this  or a                                                              
different bill.   He  asked Ms. Wilson  whether she  could provide                                                              
draft language regarding  exoneration for the next  hearing on the                                                              
REPRESENTATIVE  ANDERSON  said the  issue  is  access  to the  DNA                                                              
sample as much as it is exoneration.                                                                                            
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA  replied  that   there  are  two  issues  the                                                              
committee would like  to look at separately.  One  is to make sure                                                              
that convicted  people have  access to  DNA evidence through  this                                                              
process to  try to prove their  innocence.  The  separate question                                                              
is whether  the procedure is  allowed currently under  Alaska law,                                                              
and how it  can be changed to  make sure that somebody,  after the                                                              
appeal  time  runs out,  can  open  a  case  if he/she  finds  DNA                                                              
evidence and  proves they are actually  innocent.  One  relates to                                                              
AS 44.41.035  and whether it is  broad enough to  allow defendants                                                              
access to  the evidence for exoneration.   The other  question is,                                                              
does the  legislature have to  change Alaska's legal  procedures -                                                              
as  30-some other  states have  - to  give people  time to  reopen                                                              
their cases.                                                                                                                    
CHAIR McGUIRE invited  witnesses to submit written  statements and                                                              
backup  material, which  would be  distributed to  members of  the                                                              
Number 1302                                                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG said  he supports  leaving the  [refusal                                                              
to  give  a  DNA  sample] a  class  A  misdemeanor,  and  he  also                                                              
supports  access for  the purpose  of exoneration.   He  mentioned                                                              
that it  would be  really helpful  to put  all issues relating  to                                                              
DNA in one bill.                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  GARA asked  Ms.  Rudinger,  Executive Director  of                                                              
the  Alaska Civil  Liberties  Union (AkCLU),  to  provide, at  the                                                              
next hearing  of HB  49, the  AkCLU's perspective  on current  law                                                              
regarding  allowed uses  of DNA  evidence and  violations of  that                                                              
authorized use.                                                                                                                 
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG said  that the  availability of  federal                                                              
money is  one of the driving  forces for this  bill.  He  said his                                                              
concern  is  that  state  and local  governments  are  faced  with                                                              
legislation that  is driven  by available money,  but after  a few                                                              
years,  the funding  goes away.   He  said there  is no  provision                                                              
made  for that  eventuality,  when  the legislation  is  initially                                                              
passed.  The state  may be left with an expensive  program that it                                                              
can't  afford  to  maintain.     Since  this  is  the  first  bill                                                              
resulting from  federal money  that he has  seen this  session, he                                                              
said he  wants to be sure  the state is  not put in a  position of                                                              
an unfunded federal  mandate.  He said he's asking  people on line                                                              
and in person to consider this [situation].                                                                                     
REPRESENTATIVE  GRUENBERG  suggested  the intent  language  should                                                              
include the  note that  the bill  is being  passed because  of the                                                              
availability   of  federal   money.     Maybe,   he  opined,   the                                                              
legislature ought  to consider building  a sunset clause  into the                                                              
bill, so  that when the  money goes away,  the legislature  has to                                                              
reauthorize it, to  be sure that the state has that  money in five                                                              
years  or whenever.   Such would  force the  legislature to  think                                                              
about that  now, and put  a provision in  each bill.   It's almost                                                              
like a joint  resolution rolled into  the bill, so that  a copy of                                                              
that bill  and that provision shall  be sent to the  delegation in                                                              
Congress.   If Alaska  starts taking  that kind  of a  step, maybe                                                              
through  the NCSL  [National  Conference  of State  Legislatures],                                                              
other groups, and  other state legislatures would  be convinced to                                                              
do it  also.  He said  he may offer  language on this  concept [at                                                              
the next meeting].                                                                                                              
[HB 49 was held over.]                                                                                                          

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