- Associated Press - Monday, May 29, 2017

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia officials are studying a DNA database expansion to include more people convicted of misdemeanors.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports (https://bit.ly/2s6UaAl ) that supporters expect a larger database to help solve more crimes, but opponents say an expansion raises cost and privacy concerns. The Department of Forensic Science’s website shows Virginia’s database now holds more than 415,000 offender DNA profiles.

A bill that would have directed the Virginia State Crime Commission to study an expansion didn’t pass in the General Assembly this year, but the commission’s executive committee decided to do it anyway. Staff will also review safeguards and the cost of any additional collections.

ACLU of Virginia spokesman Bill Farrar says and his group opposes collections from people who have only committed a misdemeanor.

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Information from: Richmond Times-Dispatch, https://www.timesdispatch.com

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