Understanding Arizona's DNA Testing Laws and Regulations (ARS-13-610)

Feature Article: Understanding the DNA Testing Laws and Regulations in Arizona


DNA testing has played a significant role in criminal investigations over the years. It has helped to identify suspects, exonerate those who have been wrongly accused, and facilitate convictions based on scientific evidence. However, the use of DNA evidence comes with its own set of legal considerations and regulations that must be adhered to, especially in criminal cases. In Arizona, the DNA testing laws and regulations are outlined in the Arizona Revised Statutes (ARS) Title 13-610. This article provides an extensive overview of the DNA law in Arizona and answers several questions about DNA testing in criminal cases.

What is the DNA Law in Arizona?

Arizona Revised Statutes Title 13-610 establishes the legal framework for DNA testing in criminal investigations. Under Arizona law, DNA evidence can be used to identify suspects, establish a link between the suspect and the crime scene, and corroborate witness testimony. The law mandates that every person who is convicted of a felony offense must provide a DNA sample to be stored in a state database.

Can police use DNA without my consent?

In Arizona, law enforcement officers can collect DNA samples from individuals during the course of a criminal investigation, even without their consent. The police can obtain DNA evidence by collecting samples of saliva, blood, hair, or tissue from the crime scene, the victim, or the suspect. However, the use of DNA evidence obtained without a search warrant or probable cause may be the subject of legal challenges.

Can police access DNA databases?

Law enforcement agencies can access the Arizona DNA database to search for matches with crime scene evidence or samples collected during an investigation. The database is maintained by the Arizona Department of Public Safety and is accessible to authorized law enforcement agencies. However, there are various safeguards in place to protect the confidentiality of the DNA samples and prevent unauthorized access to the database.

What happens if you refuse to give DNA?

Refusing to provide a DNA sample when requested by law enforcement can result in legal consequences. If a person fails to provide a DNA sample when ordered to do so by the court, they can be held in contempt and face a fine or imprisonment.

What is Familial DNA?

Familial DNA is a forensic technique that involves searching DNA databases for partial matches with crime scene evidence. This technique can be particularly useful in cases where there is no exact match with a suspect's DNA. Familial DNA analysis can help to identify potential relatives of the suspect, who may then be investigated further. It is important to note that familial DNA testing has raised concerns about privacy violations and the potential for false matches.

How can a Criminal Defense Attorney help?

A criminal defense attorney can help individuals who are facing criminal charges in Arizona to understand their rights and obligations with regard to DNA testing. They can also advise their clients on the legality of the methods used to collect DNA evidence, the admissibility of such evidence in court, and the potential consequences of refusing to provide a DNA sample. Additionally, a defense attorney can help to challenge the admissibility of DNA evidence if it was obtained illegally or in violation of an individual's constitutional rights.


In conclusion, DNA testing has become an invaluable tool in criminal investigations, but it is crucial to ensure that DNA evidence is collected and analyzed in accordance with the law. The DNA law in Arizona provides a framework for the collection, storage, and use of DNA evidence in criminal cases. However, it is essential to consult with a criminal defense attorney to understand your rights and obligations when it comes to DNA testing. To learn more about DNA testing laws and regulations in Arizona, visit DNA Testing Laws and Regulations- ARS-13-610-DNA,ARS.