The Broward County, Fla., sheriff’s office is asking its detectives to submit their own DNA samples on Q-Tips, reports the Miami Herald. The office says they’re keeping the swabs on file and that the program is voluntary. A union official said the program is an invasion of privacy and officers do not know what their bosses will do with the unique genetic information. “They cannot compel the officer to do that and I would tell my officers not to do it. Absolutely not,” said Barbara Duffy, general counsel for the Broward County Police Benevolent Association.
Broward County spokeswoman Cheryl Stopnick said that the testing of detectives who go to crime scenes has been going on for two or three years. Investigators who go to violent crime scenes — robberies, sex crimes, aggravated batteries, and homicides — can accidentally contaminate the scene with their DNA, Stopnick said. That stockpiled DNA can be compared with genetic material found at the crime scene. Stopnick would not say how many detectives have already submitted samples. The testing is limited to detectives who investigate violent crimes and to crime lab employees. “Who knows what the heck they’re going to do with it. Why don’t we test everyone for DNA?” Duffy said.