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Md.: DNA law in front of SCOTUS aided 43 cases

Friday - 2/22/2013, 5:15pm  ET

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Maryland DNA law being challenged in the Supreme Court helped lead to 43 convictions over the last four years. But state data shows most of the convictions could eventually have happened even without the new law.

Maryland has required people convicted of serious crimes to provide a sample of their DNA for years. The state changed its law in 2009, however, so that people arrested for certain violent crimes now have to provide DNA.

Those samples led to 43 convictions. But 29 of the convictions could have happened even if the state hadn't changed its law. State data says that's because those people were ultimately convicted of the offense their DNA was taken for.

The change is at the center of a U.S. Supreme Court case being argued Tuesday.

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