munoz 02182020HAO0320SPRINGFIELD – Law enforcement agencies can face roadblocks with collecting DNA samples when trying to locate missing people, but now that process will be a bit easier thanks to a measure passed by Assistant Majority Leader Tony Munoz (D-Chicago).

“DNA testing can help reunite missing people with their families,” Munoz said. “If a family member of yours is missing, you can now provide DNA samples to law enforcement to help find them.”  

Public Act 101-0266, allows law enforcement agencies to collect DNA samples of the missing person or attempt to collect and create a reference DNA sample from their family members. All DNA samples collected in missing person cases from family members of the missing person cannot be retained once the person has been located or identified.

The law also adds the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUS) to the list of laboratories law enforcement agencies can coordinate with when trying to find a missing person. NamUS is a national information clearing house and resource center for missing, unidentified and unclaimed person cases across the country.

“Successfully finding a missing person requires law enforcement to move fast, and we want to make sure they have every tool available to do their job,” Munoz said. “By using the national system, we have a better opportunity of finding missing people sooner.”

Missing people’s information would need to be submitted to NamUS within 45 days. In high-risk missing person cases, law enforcement would be required to submit a packet of all relevant DNA samples to NamUS within 30 days.

The new law takes effect Jan. 1, 2021.