Legal Aid Society


NYPD Admits Almost 2,000 People Should be Removed From City DNA Index​

The Legal Aid Society called on the City Council to abolish genetic stop-and-frisk after the New York City Police Department (NYPD) recently announced that it would remove some New Yorker’s profiles from its DNA database, according to the New York Daily News.

In a memorandum published on its website, the NYPD claimed it has reviewed approximately 4,000 DNA profiles currently in the City databank and determined that nearly half of them (1,845) would be removed because those people had not been convicted of a crime.

However, the NYPD insisted that it would keep the remainder of the profiles in the databank, claiming that those people were later convicted of a crime or are currently the subject of an NYPD investigation. Additionally, for a small number of people, the NYPD stated that it was keeping the DNA profiles because it did not believe that the people involved were exonerated for legitimate reasons.

The NYPD claims that it will continue to review additional profiles in the DNA index after the OCME previously identified 20,000 for potential removal. The NYPD did not disclose any names of the people whose DNA was removed or kept, nor did it indicate whether the people whose DNA was reviewed would be notified about the status of their genetic material.

“We’re not living in ‘Minority Report,’ where we put people in a DNA database before they’re convicted, thinking that one day they might be,” said Terri Rosenblatt, Supervising Attorney of the DNA Unit at The Legal Aid Society.