SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


DNA Testing
By Peter Bolling


June 19, 2009

Today the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Alaska's policy of not granting post-conviction DNA testing to inmates even if they are willing to pay for the tests. This is not a victory for Alaska or Alaskans.

Alaska is one of only 3 states that do not provide a route that inmates can pursue to access DNA evidence after they have been convicted. DNA evidence should be recognized as a fundamental part of due process and, although the Supreme Court disagrees (5-4), the State of Alaska needs to legislate reasonable access to DNA evidence for inmates who claim innocence and for whom DNA evidence offers the possibility of exoneration.

The state will incur some financial burden by providing access to DNA evidence and by paying for DNA testing, but that cost must be viewed as part of the necessary costs of having a justice system that Alaskans can be confident is performing effectively.

I hope that Sitnews readers will contact their elected representatives and encourage them to review the procedures in other states and provide reasonable access to post-conviction DNA testing in our state.


Peter Bolling
Ketchikan, AK

About: "American Government Teacher: Ketchikan High School"

Received June 19, 2008 - Published June 19, 2009


Viewpoints - Opinion Letters:

letter Webmail Your Opinion Letter to the Editor



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.


E-mail your letters & opinions to
Your full name, city and state are required for letter publication.

SitNews ©2009
Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska