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Should Cops Ask Parent Permission Before Taking DNA Samples?

Authorities have collected DNA samples from local students while investigating Jessica Funk-Haslam's killing.

When detectives take DNA samples from minors, should parents have to give persmission?

That's the question at least one parent wants answered, according to Fox 40.

Sacramento County Sheriff's Department investigators took DNA samples from Albert Einstein Middle School students last week while investigating the killing of Jessica Funk-Haslam, Fox 40 reported.

Parent Michaela Brown told Rosemont Patch she thinks parents or attorneys should have been present while DNA samples were being taken.

A legal analyst told Fox 40 that's not the case.

"Ideally, you'd want the juvenile's parents or legal guardian there, but the police don't have to have them there to take a DNA swab," Ken Rosenfeld told the station.

Sheriff's department spokesman Dep. Jason Ramos told the station the department doesn't require parental consent.

Rosemont, what do you think? If investigators took DNA samples from your kids, would you want to be asked for permission?

Cody Kitaura April 19, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Hi all, Bee columnist Foon Rhee brought this up today: http://www.sacbee.com/2012/04/19/4425032/foon-rhee-in-hunt-for-killer-dont.html "The presumption of innocence and our privacy are worth protecting. If they fall by the wayside because it's a high-profile case, what lesson does that teach the students as they're having their cheeks swabbed?" What do you folks think of what he wrote?
Teresa Savage April 20, 2012 at 06:48 AM
A minor is a minor! Until they are 18. I am not saying that I would by any means be a parent obstructing justice, but just being present for my child. I still want justice for Jessica. Elementary school is for sure too young for any police officer to want DNA taken from a child without prior consent or presence of their parent/guardian. For all you out there that have no children, or your children are still young, I am sure your opinions will change when your child becomes an adolescent. Love them or hate them you still are the Mama Bear!
JDOM April 20, 2012 at 11:22 AM
All I have to say is " what if it was your child"
Brad April 20, 2012 at 12:11 PM
That's an interesting question, can you clarify? Do you mean the child who is being questioned (not accused, by the way), or the one who is dead? I believe that most parents naturally want to protect their children, as they should, but I also think that most parents would stop at nothing to find the killer of their child and bring them to justice. Which would any of us be in either situation? But frankly, by now most parents should be aware that detectives are talking to kids in the neighborhood, and likely will continue to. I'd recommend just telling them it is a possibility, and just be honest with investigators. Make them aware, but also have a little faith in them, it's not like your kids aren't already talking about this case. At the moment, I'd say this whole thing has hit them far harder than their parents. If someone chooses to not consent, so be it, but I wouldn't expect those who deny samples to the authorities to be excluded from the investigation in the future.
MH April 23, 2012 at 09:02 PM
I think if your child is innocent you have nothing to worry about. If they would have asked permission then your child would have conveniently not been at school that day. Some parent knows way more than they are letting on. I really hope they solve this--I would look at the NEW group of friends she was hanging out with.

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