Maryland’s highest court will not overturn or suspend its April ruling that prohibits DNA collection from individuals charged, but not convicted, of violent crimes and burglaries, The Washington Post reports. The Maryland Court of Appeals clerk’s office confirmed that judges denied the request of the Maryland Attorney General to reconsider the decision made in Alonzo Jay King Jr. v. State of Maryland, which found that swabbing criminal suspects for DNA after they are charged is a violation of their constitutional rights. With this new ruling, police will not be able to collect DNA from charged criminal suspects while they await action from the court.
The case centers around a piece of legislation in Maryland that allowed police, starting in 2009, to collect DNA from suspects after they were charged with burglaries or violent crimes; prior to this new law, police officers were only able to collect DNA from convicted criminals. Alonzo Jay King Jr. challenged the law after his April 2009 arrest in Wicomico County on first and second degree Maryland assault charges. Prosecutors in the case used a DNA swab from this case to connect him to a rape which occurred in 2003, and he was later convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the crime.