Oklahoma Poised to Adopt DNA Access Bill
Oklahoma is the only state in the nation that doesn’t have a DNA testing law—but that could soon change. Legislation that would allow an individual who is convicted of a crime access to DNA testing of any biological evidence associated with the crime was approved unanimously by the Oklahoma House of Representatives Tuesday. The law, if it passes, will give hope to the wrongfully convicted, who could request DNA testing whether they are currently incarcerated, on parole, or free but still tainted by the conviction.
House Bill 1068, authored by State Rep. Lee Denney, R-Cushing, would also allow previously tested evidence to be subjected to newer testing techniques and would require the court to hold a hearing if the DNA testing results are favorable to the defendant. The Stillwater News Press reports:
“This legislation creates that process and thus makes it even more difficult for mistakes to fall through the cracks,” Denney said.
“If we have people sitting in our state prisons who actually are innocent, we want to move as fast as we can to exonerate them,” Denney said.
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