By The Associated Press
The Arizona Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday on the constitutionality of a 2009 state law requiring pretrial DNA testing of juveniles accused of sex crimes and certain other offenses.
At issue is whether the testing is an unconstitutional search and seizure. The attorneys for the juveniles argued that “A suspicionless search of the DNA of an unadjudicated juvenile does not fall under any valid exception to the warrant requirement.”
The justices are reviewing a Court of Appeal panel's split ruling last October, which said that the law is constitutional because state interests trump the privacy of the juveniles. The samples are entered into a state database and the Combined DNA Index System, or CODIS, a national database managed by the FBI.
Two Court of Appeals judges said five juveniles could be required to be tested because courts had already ruled there was probable cause to believe those juveniles committed crimes.
But one of those judges and a third said DNA testing of two other juveniles was out of bounds because there hadn't been court findings of probable cause.
The Supreme Court is hearing the arguments at Coconino High School in Flagstaff.