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By Jill Rosen, The Baltimore Sun | May 14, 2010
Someone of the canine persuasion has been leaving his business all over the ritzy Scarlett Place condominium near the Inner Harbor. And the condo board says the only way to find the culprit: mandated DNA tests for every dog in the building. "We pay all this money, and we're walking around stepping in dog poop. We bring guests over and this is what they're greeted by. It's embarrassing for me as a dog owner and as someone who lives in this building," says Steve Frans, the board member who raised the idea of hiring a lab to identify which of the dozens of dogs in the luxury building is behind the droppings.
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NEWS
By Pamela Wood, The Baltimore Sun | September 9, 2014
The decomposing body of a man found in a Glen Burnie creek in May has been identified as a homeless man who had been reported missing, according to Anne Arundel County Police. Using DNA analysis, the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner identified the remains as belonging to Adam Demuth, police said. Demuth was a homeless man who had been reported missing in September 2013. His body was found May 21 by a man who was doing yard work in the 1200 block of Branch Lane. Police did not have information about the cause of Demuth's death.
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NEWS
May 7, 2012
I would like to respond to Dan Rodricks ' column on taking DNA samples from people who are arrested ("DNA: Why wait for an arrest?" May 3). I support his opinion, but I think he could have included more reasons, especially for a general gathering of DNA. If all of us gave samples, the medical world would benefit tremendously. Close matching organ donors could be located immediately. Untold information could ease the tracking of diseases from the common cold to virulent cancers.
NEWS
By Justin George, The Baltimore Sun | September 5, 2014
DNA recovered from a blanket taken from a crime scene decades ago has helped prosecutors bring charges against a Baltimore man they say raped and killed a 75-year-old woman in 1981. Phillip D. Lee, 55, is charged with first-degree murder and first-degree sex offense in the death of Anna Dorthea Smith. He has been held since mid-August without bail. Police and prosecutors announced his indictment Friday. The indictment "highlights the power of DNA analysis, which led us to this defendant," Baltimore State's Attorney Gregg L. Bernstein said.
NEWS
By Erin Cox and The Baltimore Sun | March 14, 2013
As the U.S. Supreme Court weighs whether to strike down Maryland's controversial DNA collection law, the House of Delegates on Thursday voted to extend it.  The 2009 law allows police to collect DNA samples from people arrested for certain violent crimes. It is set to sunset at the end of the year. By a 135-1 vote, the House decided to make it permanent.  The measure now moves to the Senate. In late February, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on whether the law violated the Fourth Amendment right against illegal search and seizure.
NEWS
by Annie Linskey | September 17, 2012
A bipartisan group of Maryland lawmakers today asked the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold a state law that allows police to collect DNA samples from those arrested for violent crimes and some burglaries.  The lawmakers, led by Montgomery County Del. Sam Arora (D), said the law is a critical tool for law enforcement, has helped put rapists and other criminals behind bars and should be reinstated. Eighteen others signed on to the amicus brief. Attorney General Doug Gansler has also asked the court to uphold the state law. The 2008 DNA collection law was overturned by the Maryland Court of Appeals in April, when judges agreed with civil liberties groups that have argued that people are presumed innocent at the time of arrest.
NEWS
November 8, 2002
HERE'S WHAT'S scary about the case against Bernard Webster, the Baltimore man who spent 20 years in prison for a rape he didn't commit: There was no prosecutorial misconduct. Police didn't beat a confession out of him. He had a good lawyer at trial. And three eyewitnesses said they saw him near the crime scene. If not for DNA evidence collected after he had sat in a cell for nearly half his life, and a lawyer hellbent on determining the indisputable truth, nothing about this case would have suggested he wasn't guilty.
NEWS
May 17, 2010
The residents of Scarlett Place should be ashamed of themselves. Some lady has her delicate sensibilities offended because she saw some dog waste, so now they are going to the trouble and expense of DNA testing every animal in the building. There are a lot of more important things in this world that are far more offensive to most people. Rather than waste time and money on silly DNA testing, they should be donating their time and money to the local food bank or homeless shelter instead.
NEWS
April 28, 2012
The criminal defense lawyers make the fair and typical plea for the "right to privacy" on behalf of the violent suspects they represent, but they ignore that the victim of a crime, be it an individual, a store or whatever, has not only lost their privacy but considerably more in the process ("Maryland police continue to collect DNA samples," April 26). There are consequences to bad behavior and if giving up your DNA is one of them, so be it. Peter Bell, Monkton
NEWS
By Brent Jones, The Baltimore Sun | August 6, 2010
Maryland officials announced Friday the arrests of more than 250 suspects through the use of a DNA database previously backlogged with more than 24,000 samples. Since 2007, Gov. Martin O'Malley said, the state has significantly decreased the backlog of DNA that had not been entered into the state's database. State officials say 267 arrests have been made since those samples were entered into the system. At a news conference with Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III and other city and state leaders, O'Malley said 28 of those arrests have led to convictions, including four life sentences.
NEWS
By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun | July 30, 2014
An appeals court on Wednesday sanctioned the police's use of genetic material obtained in one investigation to solve other crimes, but agreed with attorneys for a burglar that questions surround the little known practice. Three judges of the Court of Special Appeals upheld the burglary conviction of George Varriale, a homeless Anne Arundel County man, which was based in part on DNA that he had voluntarily given to police to clear himself in a rape investigation . Genetic material obtained by police with consent of a suspect is not subject to the same legal protections as that compelled from people arrested for certain crimes - the profile need not be expunged from law enforcement databases if the suspect is cleared of wrongdoing, for example.
NEWS
By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun | April 10, 2014
An Anne Arundel County man who was found guilty of a burglary based in part on DNA evidence asked a state appellate court Thursday to throw out his conviction, arguing that police improperly kept his genetic information in the database they used to link him to a Coke can from the crime scene. George Varriale, 46, gave a DNA sample to Anne Arundel County police in 2012 as they were investigating a reported rape. The sample did not link him to that crime, but police later used it to place him at the 2008 burglary of a Glen Burnie business.
NEWS
By Justin George, The Baltimore Sun | April 4, 2014
Baltimore police arrested a 45-year-old Baltimore man they suspected in two sexual assaults over a period of 15 months in Northeastern Baltimore. John Thomas Leach, of the 3400 block of Mary Ave. in the Glenham-Belhar neighborhood, was charged with multiple counts of rape, sexual offense, assault, burglary and other charges. Police believe he assaulted two women on his block. The first incident took place in January 2013. According to an arrest warrant in that case, police said the victim came out of her shower around 9:30 a.m. to face a masked intruder who bound, gagged and blindfolded her before sexually assaulting her. Police said the suspect barricaded the victim in a closet, allowing him time to escape.
NEWS
By Colin Campbell, The Baltimore Sun | February 17, 2014
A 25-year-old man suspected in multiple sexual assaults and robberies, including one last week, has been arrested, police said. Police arrested Bernard Burton, of the 2000 block of E. Baltimore St., Feb. 12 on an open warrant in a sexual assault in the 100 block of N. Rose St., from July of 2012, police said. A police spokesman did not know how long the warrant had been open. A DNA test linked Burton to a more recent sexual assault and robbery in the 2800 block of E. Fairmount Ave., on Monday of last week, police said.
NEWS
By Jessica Anderson, The Baltimore Sun | October 25, 2013
A man linked by DNA in four separate sexual assault cases since 2011 was acquitted on sex offense charges again on Friday in Baltimore City Circuit Court. A man linked by DNA in four separate sexual assault cases since 2011 was acquitted on sex offense charges again on Friday in Baltimore City Circuit Court. Nelson Bernard Clifford, 35, was accused of breaking into a third-floor apartment in West Baltimore and sexually assaulting a woman Dec. 3, 2011 but his attorney Gregory Fischer told jurors earlier this week his client had a "consensual encounter.
NEWS
By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun | August 29, 2013
The Baltimore Police Department will get more than $500,000 in federal grants to reduce a significant backlog in processing DNA evidence, according to Maryland's two U.S. senators. The grant, awarded by the U.S. Department of Justice through the DNA Backlog Reduction Program, will reduce the turnaround time in processing DNA samples and reduce processing backlogs, U.S. Senators Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin said in a statement Thursday. A review by the state Office of Legislative Audits released in June found Baltimore had the second-longest DNA processing turnaround time in 2011, following Prince George's County.
NEWS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2012
Police around Maryland said Wednesday that they would continue to collect DNA samples when suspects are arrested for violent crimes and burglaries, despite a recent ruling by the state's top court limiting the practice. Several law enforcement agencies, including the state Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, were awaiting a decision on whether the state will appeal before they make changes. Gov. Martin O'Malley, Baltimore's mayor and a chorus of state and local officials called for an appeal of what they see as a crucial tool that has linked suspects to other, unsolved crimes.
NEWS
By Frank D. Roylance, The Baltimore Sun | April 29, 2011
A reporting system set up to provide Maryland lawmakers with data on crime scene DNA testing by state and local law enforcement agencies has major flaws, a state auditor's review has found. The report by the state Office of Legislative Audits said that a "lack of clear guidance" in the legislation, in implementing regulations and in the report forms provided to police, led to "inconsistencies" in the reporting that have rendered any conclusions drawn from the numbers "unreliable.
NEWS
By Alison Knezevich, The Baltimore Sun | July 29, 2013
As the sky-blue Winnebago makes its way though midday traffic in downtown Baltimore, pedestrians can't help but stare. Onlookers giggle and pull out their camera phones. The RV, painted with the phrase "Who's Your Daddy?" offers a service most wouldn't think of using during their lunch break: DNA testing. Demand for such tests has grown in recent decades, as a legal tool in cases of child custody and paternity cases but also as an increasingly accepted way to confirm biological ties at a time when single motherhood has skyrocketed.
NEWS
June 17, 2013
Students from three Anne Arundel County high schools will receive prizes Tuesday from the Anne Arundel County Bar Foundation for taking top honors in the organization's annual essay contest. This past spring, the contest asked students to write an essay about a Maryland case before the U.S. Supreme Court -- King v. Maryland - which raised the question of whether it was an unreasonable search and seizure for police to take a DNA sample from a person arrested for, but not convicted of, a crime of violence.
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