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SPRINGFIELD – To help with locating missing persons, Assistant Majority Leader Tony Muñoz (D-Chicago) sponsored a proposal that strengthens the relationship between local law enforcement and the National Missing and Unidentified Persons Systems.

“Finding a missing person requires law enforcement to move fast and cover as much ground as possible and this tool helps them do just that,” Muñoz said. “By utilizing the national system we will have a better chance of finding missing persons sooner.”

House Bill 2708 adds NamUS to the list of laboratories law enforcement agencies can coordinate with under the Missing Persons Identification Act. NamUS is a national information clearing house and resource center for missing, unidentified and unclaimed person cases across the country.

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.

Under the new law, law enforcement agencies are allowed to attempt to collect and create a reference DNA sample from family members of the missing person, and collect a DNA sample of the missing person. All DNA samples collected in missing person cases from family members of the missing persons cannot be retained once the person has been located or identified.

The measure was signed into law on Friday and is now under effect.