By Desiree Williams
Senate Bill 322, a law enacted Jan. 1 that requires a DNA sample from all felony arrestees, has already matched the new samples to previous cases through the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS). Prior to Jan. 1, officers only collected DNA samples from convicted felons.
In April, the Indiana State Police Laboratory released data detailing the effectiveness of the law from Jan. 1 to March 31.
- Total offender samples: 12,705
- Convicted offender samples: 3,330
- Felony arrest samples: 9,375
- Total CODIS hits (matches): 244
- 46 attributed to new convicted offender samples
- 72 attributed to felony arrest samples
- 126 attributed to recently completed unsolved crime scene samples
- Nine of the 126 hits are case-to-case matches
- 117 of the 126 hits are new cases profiles that match previous CODIS data
- The first hit was Jan. 14 and matched to an unsolved rape investigation
- 44 counties have been involved in hits
- There have been hits between Indiana and 23 other states
“Law enforcement now has answers in 72 cases that have heretofore gone unsolved,” Boone County Prosecutor Todd Meyer stated. “This law is doing what it was designed to do. It solves crime and makes our communities safer.”
Boone County law enforcement officials, including Meyer, Boone County Sheriff Mike Nielsen and Zionsville Police Chief Robert Knox, were instrumental in the passage of SB 322. They proposed the bill after the murder of 82-year-old John Clements in Zionsville. Nielsen said matching a DNA sample from the scene to a sample in Ohio was the only reason the case was solved, which led to the arrest of Damoine Wilcoxson in 2016.